- REUTERS/Lucas Jackson/File Photo
- Governments have told at least 2.8 billion people to stay home in an effort to limit the spread of coronavirus.
- That means more than 37% of the world is supposed to be confined to their homes.
- On Monday, the World Health Organization warned that the outbreak was accelerating and called on countries to take strong action.
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Heeding the World Health Organization’s warnings about an accelerating pandemic, governments around the world have imposed lockdowns in an effort to stem the coronavirus pandemic.
On Tuesday morning, more than 1.5 billion people around the world had been required to remain at home.
Hours later, when India – which has around 1.3 billion residents – declared its own form of lockdown, that number nearly doubled.
“We are not helpless bystanders,” WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said Monday, the Associated Press reported. “We can change the trajectory of this pandemic.”
Ghebreyesus noted that it took 67 days to reach 100,000 cases worldwide but just four days to go from 200,000 to 300,000.
After the WHO announcement, Britain joined the lockdown efforts and imposed its “most draconian peacetime restrictions” on Monday, according to the AP. India followed suit, with a 21-day lockdown to begin Tuesday night.
“Wherever you are, stay there,” Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in Hindi in a televised address. “If we’re not able to manage the pandemic in the next 21 days, the country and your family will be set back for 21 years.”
The lockdowns and social distancing measures have been imposed in an effort to “flatten the curve,” or slow the spread of the coronavirus.
Healthcare systems around the world are struggling to keep up with the number of patients and are facing a shortage in protective gear and tests.
Staying home prevents those who have the coronavirus, but are asymptomatic, from spreading it to more vulnerable individuals.