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WHO reports biggest single-day increase in confirmed COVID-19 cases

More than 183,000 new cases worldwide were reported

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Photo (c) sankai - Getty Images

On Sunday, the World Health Organization (WHO) reported the biggest increase in coronavirus cases within a 24-hour period. The organization said there were more than 183,000 new cases worldwide, which topped the previous record of 181,232 on June 18.

The biggest surge was in Brazil, with nearly 55,000 new COVID-19 infections. The U.S. followed, with more than 36,000 new cases reported Sunday. In India, more than 15,000 new cases were tallied, the WHO said.

By region, the U.S. saw the largest increases across the West and South. Arizona reported over 3,100 new infections and 26 deaths, and Nevada reported a new high of 445 cases.

Contributing factors

Overall, the World Health Organization has reported 8,708,008 cases across the globe. The U.S. has the highest number of reported infections at over 2.2 million. Health experts say the latest tally reflects an increase in testing as well as an increase in infections. 

Amid concerns of a second wave, the WHO and other health officials are encouraging the public to remain vigilant with safety precautions. 

“The virus can return and it can hit us again in a second wave, and we have to do whatever we can to avoid that at all cost,” Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez said in a statement. 

Last week, former FDA head Dr. Scott Gottlieb said widespread testing and contact tracing -- particularly in areas seeing spikes in cases -- will be crucial to mitigating the spread of the virus. 

“We’re not going to be able to shut down the country again this summer. We’re probably not going to be able to shut down the country again this fall,” he said. “And so we’re going to need to try to isolate the sources of these outbreaks and take targeted steps. If we can’t do that, these will get out of control.”

Trump wants to ‘slow the testing down’

At a campaign rally over the weekend, President Trump said the U.S. has tested 25 million people. The “bad part,” he said, was that widespread testing tends to turn up more cases. 

“When you do testing to that extent, you’re going to find more people, you’re going to find more cases,” Trump said. “So I said to my people, ‘Slow the testing down, please.’ They test and they test.”

Likely Democratic presidential rival, Joe Biden, accused Trump of “putting politics ahead of the safety and economic well-being of the American people.”

“This virus has killed nearly 120,000 Americans and cost tens of millions their jobs, in large part because this president could not and would not mobilize testing as quickly as we needed it,” Biden said in a statement. “To hear him say tonight that he has ordered testing slowed — a transparent attempt to make the numbers look better — is appalling.”

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