The WHO declared COVID-19 a pandemic 100 days ago. In a little over 3 months, the virus has left devastation in its wake and doesn't show signs of stopping yet.

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  • The World Health Organization declared the spread of COVID-19 a pandemic on March 11 – 100 days ago.
  • As of Friday evening, the coronavirus has infected more than 8.6 million people, and the death toll surpassed 458,000, according to Johns Hopkins University.
  • The coronavirus, which causes the respiratory illness known as COVID-19, has devastated populations, as medical professionals, government officials, and scientists and researchers alike rush to understand it.
  • Here’s how the COVID-19 pandemic has reshaped life as we knew it in a matter of 100 days.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

The World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic 100 days ago on March 11. In a little more than three months, the coronavirus has infected more than 8.6 million people, and the death toll surpassed 458,000.

The coronavirus, which causes the respiratory illness known as COVID-19, spread to nearly every continent, as doctors and nurses treat hundreds of patients per shift. Government officials scrambled to not only support their constituents, but also to implement ways to stem the rapidly spreading virus.

Parts of the world plunged into unprecedented lockdowns, shuttering businesses and keeping people physically distant from one another, leading to economic decline.

In the last few weeks, some restrictions have been lifted in a bid to restore normalcy in a pandemic-ridden world. But in light of reopening efforts, experts are concerned that the world could once again face the dark reality it faced at the early beginnings of the pandemic.

In a matter of 100 days, the coronavirus has devastated populations around the world, and there doesn’t yet seem to be an end in sight as scientists rush to develop a vaccine.

Here’s how the COVID-19 pandemic has reshaped life as we knew it:



March 11: The WHO declared COVID-19 a pandemic.

FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP via Getty Images

The WHO was first aware of the novel coronavirus that was sweeping across regions of China in early January and declared it an emergency at the end of January.

According to a timeline from WHO, by March 11 the organization was “Deeply concerned both by the alarming levels of spread and severity and by the alarming levels of inaction,” which led it to declare COVID-19 a pandemic.



March 13: President Donald Trump declared a national emergency after weeks of downplaying the coronavirus and comparing it to the flu.

Associated Press

Source: Business Insider



March 16: Dow plunges 2,997 points in the worst drop since 1987 amid coronavirus fears.

Getty Images / Kiyoshi Ota

Source: Business Insider



March 19: China reports its first day without any new domestic coronavirus cases. California becomes the first state to implement a statewide “stay-at-home” order.

Lintao Zhang/Getty Images

China was the original epicenter of the novel coronavirus, and parts of the country were under lockdown for more than 70 days.

While some cities and states had implemented some form of restrictions to limit the spread of the novel coronavirus, California became the first state to implement a statewide “stay-at-home” order.

Source: Business Insider



March 23: New York emerges as the new epicenter of the coronavirus epidemic in the US.

AP Photo/Kathy Willens

While the first case in the US may date back to December 2019, and cases were first reported in Washington state, by March New York state was the epicenter in the US.

Source: Business Insider



March 26: The US surpasses China and Italy as the hardest-hit country by the coronavirus.

Brendan McDermid/Reuters

China, followed by Italy were the two countries initially hit hardest by the novel coronavirus.

Source: Business Insider



March 27: Trump signs the CARES Act, an unprecedented $2 trillion stimulus package into law to boost the economy and support Americans in the midst of lockdowns.

Erin Schaff-Pool/Getty Images

Source: Business Insider



March 31: More than one-third of the world went under some type of lockdown in a bid to stem the spread of the coronavirus.

Alfredo Falcone/LaPresse via AP

Source: Business Insider



April 2: Global coronavirus cases surpass one million.

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April 6: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was admitted to intensive care after contracting COVID-19. He has since recovered.

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Source: Twitter



April 7: About 95% of Americans were subject to stay-at-home orders.

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Source: Business Insider



April 9: The state of New York alone had the highest number of coronavirus cases than any country in the world.

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Source: Business Insider



April 23: Trials for COVID-19 vaccines begin in the UK.

Oxford University Pool via AP

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April 24: Alaska lifts its “stay-at-home” order.

Matt Waliszek of Orzel Photography/Reuters

Other states began lifting their orders in the weeks and months after. By Friday, June 19, all 50 states were in some stage of reopening.



May 12: Lebanon reissues a “total” lockdowns as coronavirus cases increase.

Mohamed Azakir/Reuters

Source: BBC



May 20: Sweden recorded the most coronavirus deaths in Europe per capita in the span of a week.

JONATHAN NACKSTRAND/AFP via Getty Images

Source: Business Insider



May 27: More than 100,000 Americans died of the coronavirus in the US.

Rick Wilking/Reuters

Source: Business Insider



June 4: Iran recorded its largest single-day case total to date, even as the country struggles to recover from its first wave.

Getty Images

Source: Business Insider



June 16: New Zealand recorded two new coronavirus cases from UK travelers after more than three weeks of zero reported cases.

Fiona Goodall/Getty Images

Source: Business Insider



June 16: Brazil records the highest record of new coronavirus cases and is set on a track to overcome the US as the hardest-hit country by the end of July.

MICHAEL DANTAS/AFP via Getty Images

As of Friday, June 19, the country had over 1 million cases and over 48,000 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University.

Source: Business Insider



June 16: Six states in the US announced record increases in coronavirus cases in a single day amid reopening efforts.

AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

Source: Business Insider



June 18: Beijing enters a ‘soft lockdown’ as coronavirus cases spike prompting concern.

NICOLAS ASFOURI/AFP/Getty Images

Source: Business Insider


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