World The most important graphics for Sars-CoV-2

The most important graphics for Sars-CoV-2

Which country is affected by the virus and how badly? What are governments doing to fight Sars-CoV-2? The most important data and facts about the corona virus.

The “extraordinary situation” according to the Epidemic Law has prevailed in Switzerland for seven weeks. On March 16, the Federal Council tightened measures to protect the population. Shops, restaurants, bars, entertainment and leisure facilities were closed, as were schools and universities. Since Monday, April 27th, hairdressing, cosmetic and massage studios, hardware stores, garden centers, flower shops and garden centers have been reopened, with further easing to follow.

How Switzerland is getting back to normal

The measures are intended to slow down the spread of the virus and, above all, to prevent many people from falling ill at the same time and the health system from collapsing, because the number of cases had initially continued to increase. Now it can be seen that this growth is leveling off considerably. In addition, the majority of patients have probably recovered.

The number of people currently infected is falling

Confirmed coronavirus cases in Switzerland (in thousands)


Change of data source from Johns Hopkins University (JHU) to the information provided by the cantons

Calculations by the research team led by Tanja Stadler at ETH Zurich indicate that the restrictive measures worked in Switzerland. Based on the confirmed infections, the number of hospitalizations and deaths, the working group reconstructed how the so-called reproductive number in Switzerland has developed since the beginning of March. This number must be less than 1 to stop exponential growth. Because on average, an infected person is less infected than another. According to the calculations, the number of reproductions in Switzerland is now between 0.65 and 0.8 with a high probability.

Reproduction number in Switzerland at a low level

Estimation of the number of reproductions, based on the confirmed cases in Switzerland


March 13-16: Most of the lockdown measures come into force

April 27: First easing takes effect

The statistics of weekly deaths in Switzerland are slowly showing how serious the Covid 19 pandemic is compared to a flu outbreak. In calendar week 14 (ending on April 5), there were 411 more deaths in people over 65 years of age than would be statistically expected at that time. In the following weeks, however, the number decreased again.

Fewer deaths than last week

Range of statistically expected and actually occurring deaths per week for people over 65 in Switzerland

Expected deaths (range)

Actual deaths

For comparison: At the height of the flu wave in 2015 there were around 270 more deaths than expected, in 2017 there were 230 more. To count all cases of current mortality alone against Covid-19 would be wrong, because the lung disease is rarely the only cause of death. Many patients have some serious pre-existing conditions. According to the figures from the Federal Statistical Office, there is currently no evidence of over-mortality among people under the age of 65.

The following graphics always show confirmed coronavirus infections. The number of known infected people always lags behind reality. It can be assumed that the number of people effectively infected with the virus is higher everywhere. For one thing, in many countries only risk patients and patients with strong symptoms are tested. On the other hand, about five days pass between the infection and the appearance of the first symptoms, and the Sars CoV-2 test and its evaluation also take time.

An international comparison makes it clear that the spreading curve is currently flatter in Switzerland than in Italy or Germany. It rises more steeply in the USA, but a flattening is now also discernible there.

The curve also flattens out a bit in the USA

Confirmed coronavirus infections by country and number of days since the 100th case

The curve is also flattening a little in the USA - confirmed coronavirus infections by country and number of days since the 100th case

The number of cases in Switzerland is now growing by less than one percent per day, and the increase has slowed considerably. This growth was earlier and more strongly reduced in Switzerland than in Germany, Italy or the USA.

The growth in Switzerland has dropped rapidly

Daily growth (7-day average) of the number of confirmed coronavirus cases, in percent

012nd3rd4th5678th910th1112th1314151617th18th19th20th21222324th25th2627282930th3132333435363738394041424344454647484950515253545556575859606162636465666768697071727374Days since the 100th case020th406080

However, South Korea was even faster than in Switzerland, where the authorities carried out a comparatively large number of tests at an early stage in order to be able to precisely understand the spread, so that infected people were strictly isolated.

You can read our analysis of the measures taken in six regions in the United States, including South Korea and Switzerland, which are badly affected.

The slowdown in the number of confirmed cases in Switzerland is likely to be a consequence of the “extraordinary situation” that has been in effect since March 16, which severely restricts public life.

A study by the market research institute Intervista on behalf of the ETH and the canton of Zurich shows how much the distance traveled by the Swiss has reduced in recent days.

In all age groups, the daily distance traveled per person has dropped to significantly less than 10 kilometers on average; people under the age of 25 have adjusted their behavior the most. No significant increase is visible even after the first easing.

There is still significantly less movement by the Swiss than before the lockdown

Average distance traveled per person (median) in Switzerland, by age group, in kilometers

February 16, 202002.05.2020010th20th30th4012nd3rd

March 13: The Federal Council closes schools, prohibits events with over 100 people, in bars / restaurants max. 50 people allowed.

March 16: The Federal Council declares the “extraordinary situation”. Bars, restaurants and many shops have to close.

The first loosening takes effect

The study is based on the movement data of around 2500 people who have their movement tracked using an app. The numbers were weighted in such a way that they are representative of the Swiss population aged 15 to 79.

Despite this good news: with around 351 confirmed infections per 100,000 inhabitants, Switzerland is severely affected by the corona virus, and only five countries have more cases per capita. According to the cantons’ figures, there are currently a total of almost 30,000 cases in Switzerland.

The USA is also ahead of Switzerland, with a population of 328 million, which is around 38 times as large as that of Switzerland.

Qatar and Spain are currently the most affected per capita

Confirmed coronavirus cases per 100,000 population, by country *

greatly slowed down or stopped spreading

0200400600QatarSpainIrelandBelgiumUnited StatesSwitzerlandItalySingaporeGreat BritainFrancePortugalNetherlandsSwedenBahrainGermanyIsraelAustriaBelarusEcuadorPanamaDenmark

The per capita comparison of those infected should also be used with caution. First, because in countries with a smaller population the share of per capita increases faster than in larger countries, and second, because many countries have very different test procedures. Countries like Norway and Switzerland tested much more per capita than the UK or France. (As of April 30th)

Switzerland tests more than South Korea

Test frequency in selected countries


was standing


April 30

86 056



31 593


April 28

31 506


April 30

31 062


April 26

30 765


April 30

29 064

United States

April 30

18 417

United Kingdom

April 30


South Korea

April 30

12 044


April 21

8 884

The number of deceased is therefore more meaningful for a country comparison. But here, too, Switzerland has a relatively high number per inhabitant. To date, around 26 people in Switzerland have died from Covid-19 lung disease per 100,000 inhabitants.

However, other countries are more affected. Belgium, with a population of 11 million similar to Switzerland, has more than three times as many deaths per capita and is ahead of Spain or Italy. Belgium also counts fatalities in nursing homes, while other countries only consider fatalities in hospitals.

The USA and Switzerland have the same number of deaths compared to the number of inhabitants

Number of corona deaths per 100,000 population

BelgiumSpainItalyGreat BritainFranceNetherlandsIrelandSwedenUnited StatesSwitzerlandCanadaPortugalEcuadorDenmarkGermanyIranAustriaPanamaSloveniaFinlandEstonia68.6754.0747.842.8937.1729.4426.8526.3120.6920.6910.2410.149.158.358.287.586.764.724.644.174.16

In the management report of the Federal Office of Public Health (BAG) (as of April 29), the cases confirmed in Switzerland, the hospitalized and the deceased are shown by age and gender. Of those who tested positive, 54 percent are women and 46 percent men. In the age group 80 and older, there are most cases per 100,000 inhabitants.

More women infected among the younger ones, more men infected among the older ones

Number of people who tested positive per 100,000 inhabitants in Switzerland and Liechtenstein, by age group and gender


There is information about over 3600 people about their hospitalization. More men than women are hospitalized across all age groups, 61 percent of those hospitalized are men. The median age is 72 years. Complete data are available for 3,223 hospitalized people, 87 percent of whom had at least one previous medical condition, the most common being high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

Most of the hospitalized are older men

Number of hospitalized in Switzerland and Liechtenstein, by age group and gender


Broken down by cantons, it can be seen that it is no longer Ticino as in the beginning, but the canton of Geneva that is most severely affected by the corona virus. According to the cantons’ figures, almost 1,000 people per 100,000 inhabitants are already infected with the virus there.

Latin Switzerland is more affected than German-speaking Switzerland

Number of coronavirus cases per 100,000 inhabitants, by canton

Latin Switzerland is more affected than German-speaking Switzerland - number of coronavirus cases per 100,000 inhabitants, by canton

Many European countries have introduced restrictive measures in recent weeks. The following map shows the Overview of the situation in Europe:

The corona virus dominates Europe

National regulations

The corona virus dominates Europe - national regulations

The red-colored countries have imposed a national curfew, as Italy did on March 9th.

Spain has the highest number of infected people in Europe, followed by Italy, France and the UK.

Spain and Italy continue to have the most cases in Europe

Confirmed cases of coronavirus in European countries, by patient status (in thousands)

050100150200SpainItalyGreat BritainFranceGermanyBelgiumNetherlandsSwitzerlandPortugalSwedenIrelandBelarusAustriaRomaniaUkraineDenmarkSerbiaNorwayCzech RepublicFinlandMoldova

The countries with the highest number of cases in Europe also have a high proportion of patients who have died; well over 20,000 people have died of Covid-19 in Spain, France and Italy. In Germany, with a comparable number of confirmed cases, there are currently only over 6,800 deceased.

European mortality data show how serious the Covid 19 pandemic is compared to a flu outbreak. The Euromomo network gathers data from various European countries on mortality.

In England, the number of deaths deviates the most from the statistically expected value, and the rash far exceeds that of the flu. In Spain, Italy, Belgium or the Netherlands, too, the values ​​are higher than with a flu wave. In Ireland, Finland or Denmark, however, there is no sign of over-mortality.

In England and Spain, many more people die than a flu wave

Deviation of weekly deaths from statistically expected mortality (number of standard deviations), seasonally adjusted, for different European countries and regions

In England and Spain, many more people die than a flu wave - deviation of weekly deaths from statistically expected mortality (number of standard deviations), seasonally adjusted, for different European countries and regions

According to figures from the Federal Statistical Office, there is currently no significant over-mortality in Germany.

Hardly any mortality in Germany

Daily deaths in 2018, 2019 and 2020 *

01/0102/0103/0104.0105/0106.0107/0108/0109/0110/0111/0112/0113/0114/01January 1516/0117/0118/0119/0120/0121/0122/0123/0124/0125/0126/0127/0128/0129/0130/01January 3101.0202.0203.0204.0205.0206.0207.0208.0209.0210.0211.0212.0213.0214.0215.0216.02February 17th2/18February 1920.0221/0222.02February 2324.0225.0226.0227.0228/0201.0302.0303.0304.0305.0306.0307.03March 809.0310.03March 1112.0313.0314.0315.033/163/173/183/19March 2003/2122/0323/0324.0325.0303/2627.0328/0329.033/30March 31April 1April 2April 304/0404/05April 6April 7April 8April 9April 10April 11April 12April 13April 14April 15April 16April 17thApril 18April 1904/20April 21April 22April 23April 24April 25April 26April 27April 28April 29April 3001/0502.0503.0504.0505/0506.0507.05May 809.0510.05May 1105/12May 13May 14May 15May 1605/17May 18May 1920.05May 21May 22May 23May 2425.05May 26May 2728/05May 29May 30May 3101.0602.0603.0604.0605.0606.0607.0606/0806/0906/1011/0606/1213/0614.06June 15June 16June 1706/1806/1906/2006/2106/2206/2324.0625.0606/2606/2728/0606/2930.0601/0707/0207/0304.0707/0506.0707/07July 8thJuly 9July 1011.0707/12July 13July 14July 15July 16July 17th07/1807/1907/2021.07July 2207/23July 2425.0707/2607/2728/0729/0730.07July 3101.0802.0803.0804.0805.0806.0807.0808.0809.0810.0811.0812.0813.0814.08August 15August 16August 17August 18August 198/208/218/228/2324.0825.088/2627.0808/2829.0808/30August 3101.0902.0903.0904.0905.0906.0907.0908.0909.0910.0911.0912.0913.0914.0915.0916.0917.0918.0919.0909/2021.0922.0923.0924.0925.0926.0927.0928.0929.0930.0901.1010/0203.1004.1005.1006.1007.1008/1009.1010/1011/1012.1013.1014.1015.1016.1010/1710/18October 1910/2010/2110/22October 23October 2410/2510/2610/2710/2810/2930/1010/3101.1102.1103.1104.1105.1106.1107.1108.1109.1110.1111/1111/1213.1114.11November 15November 1611/1711/1819/1111/2011/2111/2211/2324.1125.1111/2611/2711/2811/2911/3001.1202.1203.1204.1205.1206.1207.1208.1209.1210.1211/1212/1213.1214.1215/1216.12December 17th18/1219.1212/2021.1222.12December 2324.1225.1226.1227.1228/1229/1212/3012/3101000200030004000

The statisticians report that the flu wave 2020 has been over since mid-March and thus the number of daily deaths should actually decrease, as in previous years. However, since it is rising slightly, it is obvious that the currently comparatively high values ​​are related to the corona pandemic.

In the United States, the number of confirmed infections continues to rise sharply, the total number is higher than anywhere else. Since March 26, more cases have been counted in the United States than in China and Italy, and the million of confirmed cases has now been exceeded.

The number of infected people continues to rise in the United States

Confirmed coronavirus cases per country (in millions)


This development is particularly worrying because the spread of the virus in the United States can only be slowed down slowly. The growth is slower than in other countries.

Slowing in the US continues

Daily growth (7-day average) of the number of confirmed cases, in percent

012nd3rd4th5678th910th1112th1314151617th18th19th20th21222324th25th2627282930th3132333435363738394041424344454647484950515253545556575859606162636465666768697071727374Days since the 100th case020th406080

The development in the number of deaths in the USA also gives little hope: growth continues to be stronger than in France, Italy or Spain.

Rapid increase in deaths in the United States

Coronavirus deaths by country and number of days since the 20th death

Fatalities in the United States - Coronavirus deaths by country and number of days since the 20th death

The largest virus focus in the United States is in New York. In the metropolis alone, around 174,000 people have already tested positive for the corona virus (as of May 2nd). Several other thousands of cases are currently also counted in other large cities.

How the virus spreads in the United States

The number of confirmed cases per district is shown over time. For around 7300 cases, only the member state, but not the county, is known; these cases have not been drawn.

Data source and inspiration: New York Times

The state of Washington is also badly affected. According to the Guardian, the high number of people infected there may also be due to the fact that a lot of testing was carried out early on, because the first case in the United States became known in Washington State.

Since the end of March there have been more cases outside of China than in the country of origin of the pandemic. In addition, a large number of patients have recovered in all provinces. Individual provinces like Hunan and Anhui have managed to survive that almost all sufferers. Of around 1,000 patients each, only four died in Hunan and six in Anhui.

Almost all patients have recovered in many provinces

Number of coronavirus cases in different provinces of China, by patient status *

Most cases in China have occurred in Hubei Province, from where the pandemic started. After the disease broke out, the Chinese government initially sealed off its place of origin in Wuhan, and large parts of Hubei Province soon followed. Wuhan quickly set up temporary hospitals. At the same time, production for masks and other necessary goods was ramped up because the outbreak occurred around the Chinese New Year. Outside of Hubei, the authorities also restricted the population’s freedom of movement.

In Hubei, no one is reported as ill anymore

Confirmed cases of coronavirus in Hubei province, by patient status (in thousands)


Beijing seals off Wuhan and within hours the measures are extended to large parts of Hubei.

Completion of the second emergency hospital in Wuhan.

The numbering of cases is changed in Hubei.

The number of people who are currently ill is starting to decrease.

Hubei eases the measures outside of Wuhan.

The authorities correct the number of deaths in Wuhan by 1290.

On March 14, the authorities in Hubei relaxed the measures outside of Wuhan. Only the city of origin is still considered a high-risk zone. Other provinces have also eased their quarantine in the past few days. Around 63,600 patients have currently recovered and around 4,500 people have died in Hubei, and no more infected people have been reported. However, the authorities corrected the number of deaths sharply on April 17 – this approach raises questions.

China now faces two challenges: First, the country has to start the economy again without triggering a new outbreak. On the other hand, there is now a danger that travelers from abroad will bring the disease back in again.

The corona virus is spreading globally. The pandemic has affected over 189 countries. Of the almost 3.5 million people whose infection with the virus has been confirmed, around one million are already cured, which is about 32 percent (as of May 3). The number of people who are currently ill has risen sharply since the beginning of March.

The worldwide confirmed number of infections continues to rise

Number of confirmed coronavirus cases worldwide (in millions)


Between February 12th and 18th, not only cases confirmed by tests but also those from clinical diagnoses were counted in Hubei Province.

The number of deaths is the most accurate when it comes to showing the progression of the epidemic. In contrast to the confirmed number of cases, where there are large uncertainties such as different counting methods and high or low testing intensity, the number of deaths is usually reliable, even if there may be differences in the method of recording.

To date there have been more than 245,000 deaths worldwide. The United States, France, Great Britain, Spain and Italy have absolutely the most Covid 19 deceased. The following graphic shows how the daily number of deceased develops. We calculate the average of the last seven days for each day.

Which countries have the peak of the first wave of infections behind them

Daily number of coronavirus deaths, moving average over the last 7 days, countries sorted by the total number of deaths

The graphic shows that the daily number of deaths is declining in many countries – including Switzerland. If you look at those 30 countries with the most corona deaths, then more than two thirds have exceeded the peak for the time being. However, some countries still have increasing deaths every day. These include, for example, Brazil, Canada or Russia.

The development of the pandemic can be divided into different phases: the virus first appeared in the Chinese province of Hubei, then spread throughout the country and in other countries in the region. However, the number of confirmed cases in China has stabilized in the past month and most patients have recovered. The virus has now arrived in Europe and on other continents and is spreading further and further.

Whether or not a country copes well with the corona virus also depends on the level of preparation for a pandemic. A large-scale study that examines 195 countries in detail concludes that richer countries tend to respond better to an outbreak.

But even the USA, the country best prepared for a pandemic, is only rated 83.5 points and could therefore improve. Switzerland achieved 13th place with two thirds of the possible points. Many countries in Africa and the Middle East are particularly poorly prepared. Venezuela, where there has been a bad economic and supply crisis since 2013, is in a bad position.

Richer countries are better prepared for epidemics than poorer ones

Index value (0-100) for the level of pandemic and epidemic preparedness

North Korea is also in an unfortunate situation. If the virus arrives from one of the two heavily affected neighboring countries, China and South Korea, the population is at risk of disaster. Many North Koreans are malnourished and therefore weakened, while the country’s health system is on the ground.

Das Regime in Nordkorea behauptet jedoch weiterhin, im Land gebe es keinen einzigen Fall des Coronavirus. Mehr als 2000 Menschen seien jedoch in Quarantäne. Die Krisenzeit nutzt die Regierung, um mehrere  Raketentests durchzuführen.

Eine Geschichte von Nikolai Thelitz, Alexandra Kohler, Barnaby Skinner, Jonas Oesch, Balz Rittmeyer, Joana Kelén, Anja Lemcke, Julia Monn, Christian Kleeb, Dominik Batz und Kaspar Manz.

Note: Um sich über die Gefahren, die mit dem Coronavirus einhergehen, als auch über aktuelle Massnahmen in der Schweiz zu informieren, besuchen Sie die Informationswebsite des Bundesamtes für Gesundheit (BAG). Weitere Informationen auf Englisch erhalten Sie auf der Website der Weltgesundheitsorganisation (WHO). Die NZZ hat alle Artikel zum Coronavirus hier zusammengestellt. Alles zu den Symptomen und Tipps für den Alltag finden Sie hier.

Methodikhinweis: This article is updated continuously. Wir die Zahlen der Kantone, die das Statistische Amt des Kantons Zürich auf Github zur Verfügung stellt, und die Zahlen der Johns-Hopkins-Universität (JHU). Bei internationalen Vergleichen nutzen wir auch für die Schweiz Zahlen der JHU, um die Vergleichbarkeit zu optimieren. Die Forscher der JHU erheben die Zahlen aus verschiedenen Quellen und lassen sie jeweils von offiziellen Stellen bestätigen (im Detail hier erklärt). Alle Zahlen beziehen sich nur auf die bestätigten Corona-Fälle in den jeweiligen Ländern. Es ist davon auszugehen, dass die Zahl der effektiven Corona-Infizierten überall höher liegt. Die Wissenschafter sind darauf angewiesen, dass die Regierungsstellen korrekte Angaben machen, was nicht immer sichergestellt ist. Zudem können national oder regional unterschiedliche Vorgehensweisen und eine variierende Häufigkeit von Tests einen Einfluss auf die Vergleichbarkeit der Fallzahlen haben. Die Zahlen der JHU weisen zum Teil kleine Lücken auf, betroffen sind einzelne Werte von Mitte März, wo für einige Länder die Zahlen des Vortags vermeldet werden. Mehr dazu, wie die NZZ Daten zum Coronavirus verwendet, lesen Sie hier.


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