5 Must-Reads of the Day: Fears of second virus wave in Aus, France records more than 3,000 new COVID cases in just four days, satellites capture plummeting air pollution and more

Today's global headlines.

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5 must-read coronavirus global headline stories from around the world on April 23rd, 2020.

1. Australia faces the “permanent risk” of a second wave of COVID-19

The Chief Medical Officer told a parliamentary committee today that while there had been positive signs of containing the virus in Australia, we would never be able to rule out another spike in cases.

“We have to be very, very aware that whilst we’ve only had seven cases over the last 24 hours, we’re in a wonderful position, but there is a permanent risk of further waves,” he said.

It comes as Australia recorded just four new cases in a 24-hour period across the whole country.

Read more: Why we can’t be sure we’ve ever fully beaten coronavirus

2. France records enormous spike in new cases over just four days.

France today reported that, over the past four days, more than 3,200 coronavirus cases had been confirmed.

The shocking number brings the country’s new case total to 181,373.

COVID-19 has so far claimed 544 people, compared to 74 now confirmed in Australia.

It comes as France’s lockdown – put in place on March 17 – continues until at least May 11, when it will be next reviewed.

Read more: France records worst four days ever for coronavirus cases, with thousands diagnosed despite lockdown restrictions

3. Incredible images from space capture the drop in air pollution as countries around the world stay in tight lockdown

Satellite imaging shows some of the worst polluting cities in the world recorded a drop in air pollution by up to 60 per cent from the previous year.

In a report released today – which happens to be Earth Day – showed countries like India and China especially showed the most remarkable differences.

But experts said they fully expected those levels to return to levels seen before COVID-19.

Read more: Satellite imaging shows remarkable difference coronavirus lockdowns have made to air pollution levels

4. Trump says COVID-19 may very well “not come back” in Autumn

The US President expressed confidence in his nation’s ability to beat the virus to the point of eliminating the possibility of any resurgence later in the year.

Despite concern from medical experts that the virus could very well come back with a vengeance, Trump played down concerns of any further waves.

“We’re going to be watching for it, but it’s also possible it doesn’t come back at all,” he said.

“If it does return, it won’t be coming back in the form that it was.”

Read more: Trump plays down possibility of future COVID-19 waves hitting country

5. New study shows slim survival rate for COVID patients on ventilators

A sombering new study has found nine out of ten coronavirus patients on ventilators survive.

The findings, which were made on outcomes from more than 2,600 patients in the US, found an extremely high death rate of those put on ventilators of about 88 per cent.

“The findings of high mortality rates among ventilated patients are similar to smaller case series reports of critically ill patients in the US,” the authors wrote in the paper.

It comes as America’s death rate creeps towards 50,000, with debate raging across the country on whether or not to lift stay-at-home restrictions.

Read more: Death rate of those put on ventilators in US found to be almost 90 per cent

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