Reports of new coronavirus cases around the world are showing signs of flattening, even though they are still rising rapidly in the United States, the World Health Organization said in its latest weekly assessment.
In the week ended Aug. 22, the W.H.O. said, some 4.5 million new cases were reported worldwide, about the same as the week before, and the rate now “seems to be stable” after two months of sustained growth.
“It is stable at a very high level,” Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the director general of the organization, said at a news briefing. “As long as this virus is circulating anywhere, it’s a threat everywhere.”
Deaths reported from Covid-19 were also similar to the previous week, at 68,000 overall, though they continued to rise in Europe and the Americas, the W.H.O. said.
The United States reported the most new cases and deaths of any country, and a 15 percent increase in cases from the week before, the W.H.O. noted, as the Delta variant spread rapidly and politicians sparred over whether to reintroduce mitigation measures. The country recorded 6,712 deaths for the week, an increase of 58 percent from the previous week.
Cases are also rising fairly rapidly in Britain, which recorded 219,919 new cases for the week, an 11 percent increase, the W.H.O. said. Iran and India each reported more new cases than Britain did, but their figures and those of Brazil, another major locus of the pandemic, fell last week.
Japan, host to the Olympic Games and now the Paralympic Games, reported the fastest case growth — its 149,057 new cases for the week represented an increase of 34 percent from the week before. Some Southeast Asian countries, particularly Malaysia and the Philippines, also reported significant increases in cases, while Thailand and the Philippines reported sharp increases in deaths.
So far, the W.H.O. said, about 211 million people around the world have had confirmed coronavirus infections since the start of the pandemic, and just over 4.4 million people are recorded as dying from Covid-19.