The COVID-19 pandemic, also known as the coronavirus pandemic, is an ongoing global pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The virus was first identified from an outbreak in Wuhan, China, in December 2019. Attempts to contain it there failed, allowing the virus to spread to other areas of China and later worldwide. The World Health Organisation (WHO) declared the outbreak a public health emergency of international concern on 30 January 2020 and a pandemic on 11 March 2020. As of 26 August 2022, the pandemic had caused more than 599 million cases and 6.48 million confirmed deaths, making it one of the deadliest in history.