Every country in Europe and Central Asia faces the threat of a COVID-19 resurgence, the World Health Organization’s Europe region head said Thursday, voicing “grave concern” as cases again reach record levels.
“Last week, with nearly 1.8 million new cases and 24,000 new deaths reported, Europe and Central Asia saw a 6% increase and 12% increase, respectively, as compared to the previous week,” said Hans Kluge.
Over the past four weeks, he observed that Europe has seen a greater than 55% increase in new COVID-19 cases.
“The current pace of transmission across the 53 countries of the European region is of grave concern,” Kluge said, noting that the more transmissible Delta variant is continuing to dominate transmission.
He said that where vaccine uptake is low, hospital admission rates are high in many countries in the Baltics, Central and Eastern Europe, and the Balkans.
The European region, extending from Greenland in the northwest to the Russian Far East, is seeing rising trends across all age groups, he said.
The rapid climb in the older population groups is of greatest concern, he said, translating into more people with severe disease and dying.