Charting the outbreak day by day in each country allows us to see the succession of events as a global story. Because the epidemic began at different times in different countries, viewing each country’s curve from the same starting point can allow us to more easily compare countries. The starting point for this chart is the day on which the 50th case was confirmed in each country, with the trend lines following the number of days since that event. As with the graph above, use the dropdown menus to visualize confirmed cases or deaths (totals or per 100,000 population), and linear or logarithmic scale.
For the twenty countries with the highest absolute daily number of deaths, the lines below show the cumulative number of cases or deaths reported in that country at each date in time. Use the two dropdown menus to see either confirmed cases or deaths (absolute numbers or per 100,000 population), and linear or logarithmic scales. Increases in deaths may happen two or more weeks after the corresponding increase in cases, but the number of deaths may be more reliable than confirmed cases because deaths are more likely to be accurately reported. The logarithmic scale helps visualize early exponential growth.
Seeing the total number of cases over time, on a country-by-country basis, can illustrate how the pandemic is expanding. These charts show cumulative cases – for instance, the number of people who have ever tested positive for coronavirus in a given country, regardless of whether they have recovered. An upward bend in a curve can indicate either a time of explosive growth of coronavirus cases in a given country or a change in how cases are defined or counted. Comparing across countries can also show where the pandemic is growing most rapidly at any point in time.