1ST WAVE OF THE PANDEMIC (FEB TO MAY 2020)
In the map above, Europe is grouped in three major areas described by the level of the death per million index. During the first wave of the pandemic and specifically during the months of February 2020 to May 2020, Western Europe was majorly hit by COVID-19 and presents the higher death per million indices. Taking into account the socioeconomic status of the countries, as well as the ways the countries responded with special measures to the pandemic, we can suggest some explanations for these observations.
The table below presents the data concerning the first COVID-19 case date for each country, the date each country reached 100 cases, the days elapsed between these two dates and finally the dates elapsed between the 100 cases date and the date lockdown measures were imposed. We notice that the virus first arrived in prosperous countries with the highest numbers of arrivals in their airports.
For example, in Belgium the first COVID-19 case was recorded on the 4rth of February 2020, while many neighboring countries took more than twenty days to record the first case. We can also see that in most of the countries in the red group, more than a month passed before they reached one hundred (100) cases. During this period, most probably the virus achieved a substantial spread before any special measures were even considered.
In the rest of countries where the virus arrived with delay, there was enough time for awareness and preparation. As a consequence, many of these countries proceeded with lockdowns without any delay and prevented the spread of the virus.
|Country||Date of |
|Date of |
|Days to Lock down|
from 100th Case
|Bosnia and Herzegovina||6/3/2020||23/3/2020||17|
Prosperity Index 2019
Airport Passengers 2019 (Million)
Prosperous countries, which in most cases have a high mobility in their airports, were among the first to be hit by the pandemic, for one more reason. They probably delayed their decisions on taking aggressive measures against COVID-19, under the fear that such decisions could slow down their economies. This ambivalence may resulted in a high spread of the virus with dramatic results.