The Pandemic that Changed the World

Covid-19: ten key moments of the world crisis

From the first fragmentary information coming from China up to the alarms of the World Health Organization (WHO), followed by the isolation and the stop of the global economy: these are the ten key moments during which Covid-19, was defined as a pandemic six months ago.
Over 900,000 deaths and 27.6 million cases of infection have been officially registered worldwide.

First death

On December 31, 2019, the WHO learned of a communication from the Wuhan authorities reporting cases of viral pneumonia in the city. The international organization would not receive confirmation from the Chinese authorities until three days later.
On January 7, 2020, a new coronavirus is identified. Four days later, Beijing announces the first death.

Wuhan is cut off from the world

On January 23, the city of Wuhan was isolated from the world. In the following days, it would be the same for almost the entire province of Hubei. Some countries are starting to repatriate their citizens from China. The first official death outside Asia would be on February 15 – a Chinese tourist hospitalized in France.

A “pandemic”

It is just past midnight on February 20 when the Lombardy Region Welfare Councilor gives the news of a 38-year-old man found positive for Covid-19 and hospitalized in Codogno, in the province of Lodi. The city itself and ten other municipalities would become the first red zone in Italy. Shortly thereafter, the lockdown would affect the entire country.

On March 6, the epidemic exceeded the threshold of 100,000 cases registered worldwide. On 11 March, the WHO qualifies Covid-19 as a “pandemic”. Global equity markets are hitting all-time lows. Governments and central banks announce the first massive measures in order to support the economy.

Europe stops

On March 16, Germany invites its citizens to “stay home” whereas the United Kingdom to “avoid any social contact”. France had been in isolation since March 17 as the European Union announced the closure of its external borders.

Threat for the whole of humanity

On March 24, the Tokyo Olympics are postponed from July 2020 to the following year. The next day, the UN warns that the spread of the pandemic “threatens the whole of humanity”.

Half of the world in isolation

Containment measures are taken around the world. According to research carried out by AFP, on April 2, more than 3.9 billion people – half of the world’s population – are forced or called to self isolation. On the same day, authorities register more than one million infections from Covid-19.

Economy on its knees

On April 29, American aircraft manufacturer Boeing cuts 16,000 jobs. Air carriers, car manufacturers and many large groups face difficulties and are announcing large reductions in staff.

Hydroxychloroquine is controversial

Promoted by French professor Didier Raoult, backed by US President Donald Trump, hydroxychloroquine is classified as ineffective by a sensational international study, published on May 22. The publication would be soon withdrawn due to a few errors. On June 5, a British test also proves that the product is ineffective.

Boost in Latin America

On June 7, the pandemic exceeds 400,000 deaths and is growing fast in Latin America. Brazil has the highest number of deaths after the United States.

For or against masks

The increase in cases gradually leads several European countries to impose the use of masks. Anti-mask demonstrations are organized in late August and early September in Berlin, London, Paris and Rome.

This exhibit has been organized in collaboration with AFP (Agence France Presse)

AFP’s 201 bureaus cover 151 countries across the world, with 100 nationalities represented among its 2,400 collaborators. The Agency operates regional hubs in five geographical zones: Africa, North America, Latin America, Asia, Europe and Middle East.

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The photographers that you can find in this exhibit are: Michael Dantas, Hector Retamal and Piero Cruciatti.


Lodi, Palazzo della Provincia
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