Reported Covid-19 cases worldwide declined for the third week in a row, although the numbers confirmed are still at some of the highest levels over the course of the pandemic, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
Another 4.8 million new Covid-19 cases were reported around the world this week, along with nearly 86,000 new deaths, according to WHO's Covid-19 Weekly Epidemiological Update, which compiled data from national health authorities through May 16.
Declining cases: Cases fell 12% overall on the previous week. Europe reported the sharpest decline, with 26% fewer cases on the week before.
"All regions reported a decline in new cases this week apart from the Western Pacific Region, where the incidence of new cases was similar to the previous week," the report said.
Record highs: The global drop in recent weeks comes after Covid-19 cases reached an all-time peak in April. Covid-19 is continuing to spread at high rates in many countries.
The highest number of new cases was in India, with 2.3 million more people falling ill this week -- a 13% decrease from the last week. In Brazil, there were 437,000 new cases, up 3% from the previous week.
While India is in crisis, there are also worrying spikes in cases and hospitalizations in many nations including Nepal, Sri Lanka, Vietnam and Egypt, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a media briefing Friday.
"Covid-19 has already cost more than 3.3 million lives and we’re on track for the second year of this pandemic to be far more deadly than the first," he said.