At the end of December 2019, Chinese public health authorities reported several cases of acute respiratory syndrome in Wuhan City, Hubei province, China. Chinese scientists soon identified a novel coronavirus as the main causative agent. The disease is now referred to as coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), and the causative virus is called severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). It is a new strain of coronavirus that has not been previously identified in humans.
The initial outbreak in Wuhan spread rapidly, affecting other parts of China. Cases were soon detected in several other countries. Outbreaks and clusters of the disease have since been observed in Asia, Europe, Australia, Africa and the Americas.
For a quick overview, please refer to the following pages:
Latest situation update, epidemiological curve and global distribution
Situation dashboard: latest available data
Current risk assessment
Q&A on COVID-19
The COVID-19 pandemic is rapidly evolving, and outbreak investigations are ongoing. ECDC is closely monitoring this outbreak, providing risk assessments, public health guidance, and advice on response activities to EU Member States and the EU Commission.
Rapid risk assessment: Novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic: increased transmission in the EU/EEA and the UK – sixth update
Risk assessment – 12 Mar 2020
Download today’s data on the geographic distribution of COVID-19 cases worldwide
Table – 17 Mar 2020
Communicable disease threats report, 8-14 March 2020, week 11
Publication – 13 Mar 2020
Information on COVID-19 for specific groups: the elderly, patients with chronic diseases, people with immunocompromising condition and pregnant women
News story – 13 Mar 2020
Poster: Effective hand-washing