Germany and Switzerland, which both have the best healthcare system in the world, are among the nations with the most number of cases in the European region. The two countries passed the 10,000 mark along with Italy, France, Spain, and the United Kingdom.
Europe has fastly become the new epicenter of the coronavirus. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said the region is now in a "fight for its life." She calls out other nations that now stopped selling medical equipment and instead keep the stocks within their territories.
According to the latest figures from the World Health Organization, the whole of the European Region now has 250,287 confirmed cases with 29,771 new cases in the past 24 hours. Deaths in the region are now at 13,950 with new fatalities at 1,964.
With the rising number of cases, a German organization with 150 hospital members said it received a special permit from the Philippines to fly in some 75 Filipino nurses to Berlin. Later, Philippines Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello said the permit had been canceled now that the Southeast Asian country is also bearing the brunt of the crisis.
The Philippines is also having difficulty deploying health workers now that it is also seeing a spike in cases. The country now has a total of 636 cases, with 84 new infections in the past 24 hours. The number of infections may be relatively small compared to many European nations but the Philippines is a developing nation. Its health system is now currently overwhelmed.
Germany, nevertheless, ramps up its coronavirus testing to 500,000 a week. Officials believed that early detection is key in stopping the spread of the virus. The country has 36,508 new cases as of Thursday plus 4,954 new cases in the past 24 hours. Deaths are at 198, with new fatalities at 49.
Meanwhile, concerns are high again after Italy's northern region of Lombardy reported 2,500 new cases on Thursday. The region alone has 32,346 total cases as of Wednesday. Overall, Italy has 74,386 cases plus 5,210 new cases. Deaths are now at 7,505, with new fatalities at 685 in the past 24 hours.
In Spain, death toll surged to 4,809 after 655 people died in the past 24 hours. The country has already overtaken China in the number of deaths due to COVID-19. The number of confirmed cases in total is currently at 56,188. On the other hand, as many as 1,068 people have recovered from the virus as of Wednesday.
In France, 365 people died in the past 24 hours, March 26 has become the country's worst one-day figures to date. Fatalities include a 16-year-old girl.
French health officials are now estimating that about 100 people die over the weekend and just over 200 deaths per day at the start of this week. France now has 13,904 people at the hospital. Of that, 3,375 are in ICU.
In the United Kingdom, deaths jumped by more than 100 in a day for the first time. The death toll has increased from 475 to 578 in the past 24 hours. UK now has 11,658 confirmed cases.
Switzerland now has 10,661 number of infections and 161 deaths.