A record number of daily worldwide coronavirus cases has been reported, for the second day in a row.
The World Health Organization (WHO) said on Sunday there had been 259,848 new COVID-19 cases globally in 24 hours, the highest daily figure so far and the first time the tally has crossed a quarter of a million.
It immediately surpassed Saturday’s previous record figure of 237,743 cases.
The WHO figures follow a similar pattern to the previous weekend, when record figures were reported twice in three days.
On Sunday, the daily worldwide death toll rose by 7,360, the highest one-day increase since 10 May. Deaths have been averaging about 4,800 per day in July.
Of the new global cases revealed on Sunday, more than 71,000 were reported in the US, the world’s worst-hit country.
More than 45,000 daily new cases were recorded in Brazil, more than 34,000 in India and more than 13,000 in South Africa.
The surge in cases meant 1 million cases were reported in less than 100 hours.
According to Johns Hopkins University, there have been more than 14.5 million coronavirus cases worldwide and more than 606,000 deaths.
In the US, there have been more than 3.7 million cases and more than 140,000 deaths.
The number of cases in Brazil passed the 2 million mark last Thursday, while India reached 1 million cases a day later.
The death toll in the US passed 140,000 on Saturday. In Florida, more than 12,000 new cases of COVID-19 were reported on Sunday, the fifth day in a row the state has announced more than 10,000 new infections.
Teams of military medics have been deployed in Texas and California to help hospitals deal with a deluge of patients who are flooding emergency rooms.
Patients are waiting "hours and hours" to get admitted, said Dr Alison Haddock at Baylor College of Medicine in the state of Texas, which reported a new daily record for virus deaths on Friday and more than 10,000 confirmed cases for the fourth consecutive day.
"I've never seen anything like this COVID surge," said Dr Haddock. “We're doing our best, but we're not an ICU."
On Sunday, Mexico reported 5,311 new cases of coronavirus, bringing its total to more than 344,000 cases and more than 39,000 deaths.
Russia reported 6,109 new cases, giving it a tally of more than 771,000.
Coronavirus: what happened today
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