WHO: New coronavirus infections up 55 percent in past week worldwide

The World Health Organization (WHO) reported Tuesday that new coronavirus infections rose globally by more than half this past week. 

In the group's weekly report, it said COVID-19 cases "increased markedly by 55%" between Jan. 3 and Jan. 9, while deaths, a lagging indicator, were around the same compared to the previous week. 

Cases grew in all regions except Africa, although the African region made up 84 percent of weekly deaths. 

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The Southeast Asia region had the biggest increase in weekly deaths at 418 percent. 

Worldwide, there were 15 million new cases and more than 43,000 new deaths. 

The increase in cases comes after the WHO said on Jan. 6 the world set a record for most confirmed COVID-19 cases at 9.5 million new cases. 

The omicron variant, which is driving the rise, is known for how highly transmissible it is, with top U.S. infectious disease expert Anthony FauciAnthony FauciPublic health expert: Biden administration needs to have agencies on the 'same page' about COVID Trump slams Biden, voices unsubstantiated election fraud claims at first rally of 2022 DeSantis says he disagreed with Trump's decision to shut down economy at start of pandemic MORE saying it will infect “just about everybody.”

“Omicron, with its extraordinary, unprecedented degree of efficiency of transmissibility, will, ultimately, find just about everybody,” Fauci said in a Tuesday interview

“Those who have been vaccinated and vaccinated and boosted would get exposed. Some, maybe a lot of them, will get infected but will very likely, with some exceptions, do reasonably well in the sense of not having hospitalization and death,” he added.