CoronavirusCovid-19International

Global COVID Death Toll Tops 4 Million

More than 4 million people worldwide have now died of COVID-19, according to data from Johns Hopkins University — a grim reminder of the deadly pandemic’s global impact as health officials race to vaccinate all corners of the world.

As of Thursday, 4,004,923 virus-related deaths have been reported, with the U.S. outpacing the rest of the world with roughly 606,000, according to a Johns Hopkins tracker. Brazil is second with approximately 529,000, followed by India with 405,000.

Those three countries alone account for more than a third of all global deaths.

Though the numbers of deaths and overall coronavirus cases have slowed significantly in wealthier countries where vaccines are plentiful, including the U.S., other developing nations are still grappling with outbreaks as newer, more contagious variants of the virus take hold.

World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, speaking Wednesday during a news conference in Geneva, lamented the “shocking inequity” in vaccine access, chiding richer countries for hoarding vaccines.

“Vaccine nationalism, where a handful of nations have taken the lion’s share, is morally indefensible and an ineffective public health strategy against a respiratory virus that is mutating quickly and becoming increasingly effective at moving from human to human,” Tedros said.

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