WHO: global COVID cases up 11% last week, omicron risk high

BERLIN (AP) – The World Health Organization says the number of COVID-19 cases recorded worldwide increased by 11% last week compared with the previous week, with the biggest increase in the Americas. The gain followed a gradual increase since October. It said in its weekly epidemiological report that the overall risk related to the advancing omicron variant “remains very high.” The U.N. health agency said in the report released late Tuesday that there were nearly 4.99 million newly reported cases from Dec. 20-26.  Europe accounted for more than half the total, with 2.84 million, though that amounted to only a 3% increase over the previous week. WHO said that new cases in the Americas were up 39% to nearly 1.48 million.

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