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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Philippines, Singapore and Indonesia battling new Covid-19 cases in SE Asia

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PHOTO: New Indian Express

Indonesia, The Philippines and Singapore are leading the way in South East Asia, contributing the most number of new cases of the coronavirus in the past week (worldometers.info).

In the past 24 hours The Philippines (1,841), Indonesia (1,462) and Singapore (327) have added the highest number of new Covid-19 cases in the ASEAN region. In The Philippines the numbers have surged since the end of March. Singapore had a big surge, with an outbreak amongst its huge migrant worker population in mid-April, slowly dropping back to manageable levels, only to see a ‘blip’ in new cases this week. Indonesia’s level of new cases appears to have peaked and has spent this week slowly dropping, although the number of daily deaths continues to rise, an indication that many cases are probably not being reported.

Both India and Bangladesh continue to be the Asian region’s clearest dangers – both with a low-standard of medical care and chaotic containment attempts.

India recorded 34,820 cases in the past 24 hours, Bangladesh 3,034.

Thailand’s immediate neighbours continue to defy the world trend with nominal new cases being reported and generally low cases throughout the pandemic response. Malaysia, directly to Thailand south, has seen a gradual drop in cases since the start of April and has only been reporting new daily cases in the teens for the past month.

Speculation continues how the South East Asian nations appear to have had general success in containing the spread of Covid-19 despite leaky borders and the high amount of tourism and discount airline travel between the nations.

Epidemiologists have speculated genetic or meteorological reasons to the limited spread, but others say it’s most likely cultural reasons – the non-controversial wearing of masks and the generally compliant populations accepting draconian lockdowns in the early days of the pandemic.

Thailand was the first country for a Covid-19 case to be identified outside of China on January 13.

 

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