• This daily roundup brings you a selection of the latest news updates on the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, as well as tips and tools to help you stay informed and protected.
  • Today's big stories: Worldwide cases top 3 million; Australia begins to reopen; WHO warns countries to stay vigilant; and three of Europe's hardest-hit nations prepare to lift restrictions.

What is the World Economic Forum doing about the coronavirus outbreak?

Responding to the COVID-19 pandemic requires global cooperation among governments, international organizations and the business community, which is at the centre of the World Economic Forum’s mission as the International Organization for Public-Private Cooperation.

Since its launch on 11 March, the Forum’s COVID Action Platform has brought together 1,667 stakeholders from 1,106 businesses and organizations to mitigate the risk and impact of the unprecedented global health emergency that is COVID-19.

The platform is created with the support of the World Health Organization and is open to all businesses and industry groups, as well as other stakeholders, aiming to integrate and inform joint action.

As an organization, the Forum has a track record of supporting efforts to contain epidemics. In 2017, at our Annual Meeting, the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) was launched – bringing together experts from government, business, health, academia and civil society to accelerate the development of vaccines. CEPI is currently supporting the race to develop a vaccine against this strand of the coronavirus.

1. How COVID-19 is affecting the globe

Early results from seroepidemiology data have begun to show the extent of the infection in people who may have been missed by surveillance measures, Dr Maria Van Kerkhove, a World Health Organization (WHO) Technical Lead, said at a briefing in Geneva Monday. This tool is helping experts detect antibody levels in those individuals, she said.

The results currently available suggest that there are many more people the disease can infect, said Van Kerkhove, making it all the more important that communities remain vigilant when it comes to identifying cases and stamping them out.

“It's important that we understand at this point in time, four months into a global pandemic, a large proportion of the population still remains susceptible", said Van Kerkhove.

As vaccination programs for other diseases have been postponed or disrupted as result of the focus on mitigating the coronavirus pandemic, the WHO warned the number of deaths from malaria could double in hot spots like sub-Saharan Africa this year.

How health service disruptions caused by COVID-19 could impact malaria deaths.
How health service disruptions caused by COVID-19 could impact malaria deaths.
Image: WHO

4. Three of the world's hardest-hit nations prepare to ease restrictions

Spain, Italy and France - the countries with the highest number of confirmed coronavirus cases after the US - have announced plans for cautious and gradual exits from their lockdowns. As the number of new infections continues to fall, this is how each country is preparing to lift restrictions.