The global tally for the coronavirus-borne illness rose above 139 million on Friday, according to data aggregated by Johns Hopkins University, as the death toll climbed above 2.98 million. The U.S. leads the world in cases and deaths by wide margins, with 31.5 million cases, or about 23% of the global total, while the 565,289 death toll makes up about 19% of the global toll. The U.S. added at least 74,312 new cases and 909 new deaths on Thursday, according to a New York Times tracker. The U.S. has averaged 70,514 cases a day in the past week, up 8% from the average two weeks ago. Pfizer Inc.

Chief Executive Albert Bourla said it is likely that people who receive Covid-19 vaccines will need booster shots within a year afterward, and then annual vaccinations, to maintain protection against the virus as it evolves, the Wall Street Journal reported. "The variants will play a key role. It is extremely important to suppress the pool of people that can be susceptible to the virus," Bourla said during a virtual event hosted by CVS Health Corp.

that aired Thursday but was recorded April 1.
Outside of the U.S., India has replaced Brazil as the country with the second highest number of cases at 14.3 million, and is fourth globally by deaths at 174,308. Brazil is third by cases at 13.7 million and second with a death toll of 365,444. Mexico is third by deaths at 211,213 and 14th highest by cases at 2.3 million. The U.K. has 4.4 million cases and 127,438 deaths, the highest in Europe and fifth highest in the world.

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