04/08/2020 2:30 PM AEST

Challenged On 'So Many' COVID-19 Deaths, Trump Snaps At 'Fake News CNN'

"We have done a great job" battling the coronavirus, Trump boasted, even though the nation leads the world in lives lost to the pandemic.

US President Donald Trump boasted on Monday that his administration was doing an “amazing job” battling COVID-19, even as America leads the world in loss of lives to the pandemic. When he was challenged, he snapped at “fake news CNN.”

We’ve done an amazing job with ventilators,” Trump told journalists. “Ventilators are very hard, very expensive, very hard to make, very complex.”

That’s when CNN reporter Jim Acosta interjected: “But why does the US have so many deaths? The US has so many death compared to so many countries around the world.”

Trump cut him off. “Fake news CNN, hold it,” he said.

He never addressed the numbers throughout the rest of his comments.

“We have done a great job in this country,” Trump added. “We haven’t been given ... the vice president, the task force, have not been given the kind of credit. If you look at countries all over the world are exploding right now — people that you said were doing a wonderful job, so wonderful, but right now, take a look at the countries that are exploding.”

He added: “What China unleashed was a very, very sad situation.” 

COVID-19 cases are surging in several countries. But the US was still leading Monday in case numbers — and deaths

The total US death toll as of Monday was more than 155,000, while the global count was 691,000. The US has tallied more than 22% of global coronavirus fatalities in a country with just 4% of the world’s population.

Trump again touted hydroxychloroquine as a treatment for the novel coronavirus in his remarks, contradicting scientific experts on his own task force that the drug has proved to be ineffective against the virus. It can also cause fatal heart arrhythmia.