The global tally for the coronavirus-borne illness climbed above 236.8million on Friday, while the death toll rose above 4.83 million, according to data aggregated by Johns Hopkins University . The U.S. continues to lead the world with a total of 44.2 million cases and 710,180 deaths, after passing 710,000 overnight. The U.S. is now averaging more than 1,800 deaths a day, according to a New York Times tracker, , a slight improvement over recent trends and new cases and hospitalizations are declining. President Joe Biden on Thursday defended his COVID-19 vaccine mandates, as he said Americans who haven't gotten shots put the U.S. economy in jeopardy. "We've made real progress across the board," he said, citing declining cases. But he added that the unvaccinated "put our economy at risk" and urged more employers to require vaccines for workers. India is second by cases after the U.S. at 33.9 million and has suffered 450,127 deaths. Brazil has second highest death toll at 599,810 and 21.5 million cases. In Europe, Russia has most fatalities at 210,673, followed by the U.K. at 137,818.