The World Health Organization said COVID-19 has now infected 80,239 worldwide. Of that, China accounted for 77,780 confirmed cases and 2,666 deaths as of February 25. The rest of the cases - 2,459 new infections and 34 deaths - came from 33 countries.   

Japan has the largest number of cases - 691 - next to China because of the patients on the Diamon Princess cruise ship. South Korea followed with its 977 cases. 

Attention, however, is now in Iran and Italy due to the rising cases even with its geographical location being far away from the epicenter of the outbreak, the Hubei province of China.

There is now strong concern over the virus evolving to become a pandemic since it has already reached several European countries

Most recently, Algeria confirmed its first case. The patient, who has been in quarantine, is an Italian man who arrived in Algeria on February 17.   

Switzerland has also confirmed its first case. Reports were not immediately clear if he is a citizen but the patient traveled from Italy. The people who had been in close contact with the said patient were also placed in mandatory quarantine. 

Croatia was also among the country that reported its first confirmed case. Croatian officials said the patient stayed in Milan before coming to the country. Health officials said he is exhibiting milder symptoms of the disease. 

At the same time, nine Croatians working at a factory in Italy were asked to place themselves on quarantine. The Croatians were working in a factory where 20 Italians were confirmed to have the infection.   

In Serbia, two citizens on the Diamon Princess cruise ship were confirmed to be infected. The patients are both crew members on the cruise ship. Nine more Serbians were still on the ship while three were already ruled out from infection.  

To contain the spread of the disease, Croatia, and Serbia are now monitoring travelers coming in and out through their borders. 

In Bosnia, citizens arriving from China, Italy, South Korea, and Iran were required to under 14-day quarantine. Similar preventive measures were already in place in Herzegovina and Montenegro. 

Albania has no confirmed case yet but ordered medical teams on high alert, checking travelers coming from Italy through air travel or travel by sea.  

No cases of infection were also reported in Macedonia, Kosovo, Moldova, and Bulgaria. The latter has canceled all flights to and from Milan until March 27. 

Austria confirmed its first two cases. The patients are two Italians who reside in one of the provinces in the country. Initial investigation showed that the individuals were infected in Italy's Lombardy region. 

Spain, meanwhile, reported its first case in the mainland, in Catalonia. The patient became the fourth confirmed case in the country. The three were tourists from Germany, Italy, and Britain who stayed in the Canary Islands and Mallorca. 

The Canary Islands made the headlines this week after officials lockdown a Tenerife hotel. To date, hundreds remained inside their rooms. They can only go if they undergo health check-ups. So far, no mandatory quarantine was imposed for the tourists.  

In Italy, where most of the infection in the European region was said to have originated, health officials confirmed the deaths of 11 people. The country now has 322 cases and hence became the place with the most number of cases in the European region.  

The situation in Italy compelled producers of Tom Cruise's new Mission: Impossible film to postponed shooting until the outbreak is effectively contained. 

Meanwhile, the United Kingdom advised all citizens against unnecessary travel to 11 Italian towns that include Codogno, Castiglione d'Adda, Casalpusterlengo, Fombio, Maleo, Somaglia, Bertonico, Terranova dei Passerini, Castelgerundo, San Fiorano, and Vo' Euhaneo. 

Saudi Arabia warned citizens against traveling to Italy and Japan. 

Iran, with a rising number of infections, now has 95 cases and 15 deaths. There are growing suspicions that the Iranian government is hiding the real magnitude of the situation in the country.  

Latin America has also recorded its first case, a Brazilian resident who has just come back from Italy.  

In the United States, officials from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that the spread of the virus in the country is imminent. The country now has 57 cases with the San Francisco being placed under a state of emergency. 

Air Canada, suspended flights between Canada and Beijing and Shanghai until April 10. The airline has also stopped suspended daily flights between Toronto and Hong Kong until April 30.