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Coronavirus - 15th November

Kitkat
Kitkat
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Post by Kitkat on Sun Nov 15 2020, 12:32

Summary for Sunday, 15th November

Here are the key developments from the last few hours:

  • The global death toll climbed above 1.3 million and more than 53 million have been infected worldwide by Covid-19, as the virus runs rampant through America and Europe.
  • Ten Covid-19 patients were killed and others were in critical condition after fire broke out in an intensive care unit in northeast Romania on Saturday, a hospital spokesperson said. The fire occurred in the early evening in the intensive care of the hospital in the town of Piatra Neamt. It was under control an hour later by the emergency services.
  • UN food agency warned 2021 will be worse than 2020. The head of the World Food Program says the Nobel Peace Prize has given the U.N. agency a spotlight and megaphone to warn world leaders that next year is going to be worse than this year, and without billions of dollars “we are going to have famines of biblical proportions in 2021.”
  • North Dakota has become the 35th US state to require face coverings be worn in public, as governors across the country grapple with a surge in coronavirus infections that threatens to swamp their healthcare systems. North Dakota joined 38 other states this month in reporting record daily jumps in new cases, 17 others with record deaths and 25 others with a record number of Covid-19 patients in hospitals, according to a Reuters tally.
  • The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Germany increased by 16,947 to 790,503, data from the Robert Koch Institute for infectious diseases showed on Sunday. The reported death toll rose by 107 to 12,485.
  • Mexico passes 1m cases. Mexico has registered more than 1 million total coronavirus cases and nearly 100,000 test-confirmed deaths, though officials agree the number is probably much higher. Health Director General Ricardo Cortés Alcalá said late Saturday the number of confirmed cases had reached 1,003,253, with at least 98,259 deaths from Covid-19.
  • South Korea reported 208 new coronavirus cases as of Saturday midnight, marking the eight straight day of triple-digit increases, the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency said on Sunday. That was slightly higher than the previous day’s 205 new infections and the highest since early September. Of the cases, 176 were domestically transmitted and 32 imported. Nearly 70% of the locally transmitted cases were from Seoul and Gyeonggi province, a densely populated area near the capital.
  • In Australia, the state of Victoria again recorded no new cases and no new deaths for the 16th consecutive day. Victoria’s death toll from coronavirus remains at 819, while the total number of deaths from Covid-19 in Australia is 907. Australia’s two other most populous states, NSW and Queensland, also recorded no new locally-acquired Covid-19 cases.
  • Ten people have died after a fire broke out in a Covid-19 intensive care ward in Romania, as prosecutors opened a criminal investigation into events. The blaze, which was “most likely triggered by a short circuit”, spread through the ward at Piatra Neamt Regional Emergency hospital on Saturday afternoon, critically injuring seven people.
  • 462 more people have died within 28 days of testing positive for Covid-19 in the U.K, raising the official death toll to 51,766. This number is up from 376 on Friday, government data shows. In Bristol, police made 14 arrests after protesters defied a ban on an anti-lockdown rally. One of the arrested men was Jeremy Corbyn’s brother, vision appears to show.
  • Record high case numbers were recorded in Russia and Ukraine. Russia reported 22,702 new infections and 391 deaths. Ukraine registered 12,524 new cases. Poland recorded a record new 548 deaths and 25,571 cases. The record number of deaths takes Poland’s toll above 10,000.
  • Iran has announced strict new lockdown restrictions from next Saturday., after recording 452 deaths, a near record. President Hassan Rouhani said non-essential businesses and services will be shut and cars will not be allowed to leave or enter Tehran and 100 other towns and cities
  • Lebanon has started a new two-week lockdown after coronavirus infections crossed the 100,000 mark. Beirut’s roads were largely empty and police checkpoints were set up at several locations.
  • Greece and Austria have set out plans to tighten lockdown restrictions. Austria is planning to impose a full lockdown from Tuesday. Greece has announced the closure of nurseries and primary schools until the end of November as its death toll surpassed 1,000.




Russia reported a daily increase of 22,572 new coronavirus infections on Sunday, taking the national tally to 1,925,825. Authorities also reported 352 Covid-19 related deaths in the last 24 hours, taking the official death toll to 33,186.



Indonesia has reported 4,106 new coronavirus infections on Sunday, taking the total number to 467,113, data from the country’s COVID-19 task force showed.
It recorded 63 COVID-19 deaths, taking the number of fatalities to 15,211. As of Sunday, 391,991 people have recovered from the virus in Indonesia



The Czech Republic has reported a further decline in the number of COVID-19 infections and deaths from daily highs seen in early November.
But the country remains among the hardest hit in Europe during this second wave of the pandemic.
Health ministry data showed 4,199 new cases were reported on Saturday, down by more than 3,500 from the same day a week earlier, amid tough lockdown measures, with 132 new fatalities, which includes revisions to previous days.
The total number of cases in the country of 10.7 million since the start of the pandemic now stands at 458,229. The death toll stands at 6,058, a tenfold increase since late September.



Coronavirus has killed at least 1,313,471 people since the outbreak emerged in China last December, according to a tally from official sources compiled by AFP on Sunday.
At least 54,001,750 cases of have been registered. Of these, at least 34,599,700 are now considered recovered.
The tallies, using data collected by AFP from national authorities and information from the World Health Organisation (WHO), probably reflect only a fraction of the actual number of infections.
Many countries are testing only symptomatic or the most serious cases.
Over Saturday, 9,246 new deaths and 607,998 new cases were recorded worldwide.
Based on latest reports, the countries with the most new deaths were United States with 1,351 fatalities, followed by Brazil with 921 and Mexico with 635.
The United States is the worst-affected country with 245,614 deaths from 10,905,598 cases. At least 4,148,444 people have been declared recovered, AFP reported.
According to the AFP tally, After the US, the hardest-hit countries are

  • Brazil with 165,658 deaths from 5,848,959 cases,
  • India with 129,635 deaths from 8,814,579 cases,
  • Mexico with 98,259 deaths from 1,003,253 cases, and
  • the United Kingdom with 51,766 from 1,344,356 cases.

The country with the highest number of deaths compared to population is Belgium with 123 fatalities per 100,000 inhabitants, followed by Peru with 107, Spain 87, Argentina 78.
China - excluding Hong Kong and Macau - has to date declared 86,338 cases, including 4,634 deaths and 81,319 recoveries.
Latin America and the Caribbean together have 423,176 deaths from 12,023,640 cases, Europe 334,968 deaths from 14,432,068 infections, and the United States and Canada 256,487 from 11,195,957 cases.
Asia has reported 181,799 deaths from 11,440,026 cases, the Middle East 68,991 deaths from 2,913,735 cases, Africa 47,109 deaths from 1,966,317 cases, and Oceania 941 deaths from 30,008 cases.


Here's a round-up of the key measures in place in parts of Europe:


France

The country announced a second lockdown from 30 October after daily Covid-related deaths reached their highest levels since April. Due to last at least a month, it is having a limited effect: new infections and hospital admissions dropped sharply at first only to increase sharply at the end of last week. , health ministry data showed
People are allowed to leave home only for essential work and medical reasons; restaurants and bars have been told to close but schools and factories can remain open. All non-essential travel has been banned and the country’s external borders are closed (although journeys are still permitted inside the EU). Travellers must be tested on arrival.
Austria
Yesterday, Vienna ordered a three-week lockdown starting on Tuesday to bring a surge in Covid-19 cases under control in time for Christmas. Austria now has one of Europe’s highest infection rates per capita. Daily new cases hit a record of 9,586 on Friday, nine times higher than at the peak of the first wave.
A current night-time curfew will become an all-day requirement to stay at home, with a few exceptions such as shopping or exercise. Working from home should happen wherever possible. Non-essential shops will close, as will service providers such as hairdressers. Secondary schools have already switched to distance learning; primary schools and kindergartens will continue to provide childcare.

Germany

Early this month, Germany began a “circuit-breaker” national lockdown to try to stop a sharp rise in cases, closing restaurants, bars, cinemas and gyms, and banning leisure travel. Schools remain open, and worship and protests are still allowed.
But daily infections have continued to increase, hitting a record 23,542 on Friday, and officials have dampened hopes that restrictions would be lifted at a meeting on Monday, when the effect of the lockdown will be discussed. Winter events such as office Christmas parties were unlikely to be allowed, the health minister said.

Portugal

The country is having a second wave that is worse than its first, and in response has brought in one of the strictest lockdowns in Europe , with a nightly curfew and weekend shutdowns in nearly 200 municipalities, home to more than three-quarters of the population. People have been urged to work from home if they can, though schools, shops and restaurants are still open. In affected areas, people must stay at home from 11pm to 5am, or from 1pm at weekends.
The country has recorded a comparatively low 191,011 cases and 3,181 deaths, but last Saturday daily infections rose to over 6,600.
Sweden
Since the start of the pandemic, Sweden has opted for a light-touch, anti-lockdown approach. There were hopes that this could mitigate a second wave by producing a higher level of immunity, but studies so far show that the national health agency has been over-optimistic about levels of antibodies in the population. In recent days, infections and hospital admissions have surged, and several regions have brought in tighter controls – though people are asked, rather than legally obliged, to comply with most measures. On Friday, the country registered 5,990 new cases, the highest since the start of the pandemic.
But shops, bars, restaurants and gyms have stayed open throughout, and wearing a face mask is still not an official recommendation outside hospitals. The country’s death rate per capita is far higher than that of its Nordic neighbours, but lower than in countries such as Spain .
Kitkat
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Post by Kitkat on Sun Nov 15 2020, 12:47

German minister predicts further 4-5 months of severe restrictions

Germans should brace for another 4-5 months of severe measures to halt the rise in coronavirus infections and should not expect the current rules to be eased quickly, Economy Minister Peter Altmaier told weekly Bild am Sonntag.
“We’re not out of the woods yet”, he said referring to infection numbers. “We cannot afford a yo-yo shutdown with the economy constantly opening and closing.”
Germany has imposed a set of measures dubbed a “lockdown light” to rein in the second wave of the pandemic that the country is seeing in common with much of the rest of Europe , Reuters reports.
While restaurants are closed, schools and shops so far remain open. Data from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for infectious diseases showed on Sunday that the number of confirmed cases in Germany increased by 16,947 to 790,503. Weekend figures tend to be lower as not all data is reported by local authorities.
Altmaier said Germany should be wary of relaxing restrictions too quickly. “If we don’t want days with 50,000 new infections, as was the case in France a few weeks ago, we must see through this and not constantly speculate about which measures can be relaxed again,” he told Bild am Sonntag.
“All countries that lifted their restrictions too early have so far paid a high price in terms of human lives lost.”
His comments echoed those of other leading German policy makers. Among others, Health Minister Jens Spahn said at an online event of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative party on Saturday that hard weeks, possibly even months, lie ahead.
Kitkat
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Post by Kitkat on Sun Nov 15 2020, 12:55

Greece limits public gatherings and closes primary schools

Greek police on Sunday announced a ban on public gatherings of four or more people as hospitals were overwhelmed with coronavirus cases, ahead of the annual anniversary of a 1973 anti-junta uprising.
Greece on Saturday said it would shut primary schools, kindergartens and daycare centres as virus-related deaths crossed a thousand, AFP reports.
The anti-junta demonstration is a treasured anniversary for many Greeks, and more than 30,000 people demonstrated in Athens and other major cities last year under a heavy police presence.
At least 24 people were killed in the 1973 crackdown, an event generally considered to have broken the junta’s grip on power and helped the restoration of democracy.
This year, however, all public gatherings of four or more people would be banned from 6 am on Sunday to 9 pm on Wednesday to stem the spread of coronavirus police said in a statement.
Fines of 5,000 euros will be issued to legal entities like political parties and 3,000 euros for individuals who organise gatherings, while those participating will be fined 300 euros.
Authorities on Saturday reported 2,835 new coronavirus cases, taking the total to 72,510, and 38 new deaths, raising the toll to 1,035.

All intensive care units in Romania to be checked

Romanian officials will check all intensive care units after a fire killed 10 people at a hospital treating coronavirus patients, the country’s leaders have said.
The fire broke out on Saturday in a room at the intensive care unit of the Piatra Neamt county hospital in northeastern Romania and spread to an adjoining room.
Six intubated Covid-19 patients were injured and were transferred to another hospital, Reuters reports.
Coronavirus - 15th November 350011
Firefighters at the hospital in Romania where a fire killed 10 people on Saturday Photograph: Inquam Photos/Reuters

The doctor on call, who sustained severe burns as he tried to rescue the patients from the flames was flown to a specialised hospital in Belgium early on Sunday.
The government said public health inspectors and the agency for emergency situations would check the conditions under which medical equipment was operating in all intensive care units from Monday.
Prosecutors said an investigation was underway into what triggered the fire.
Kitkat
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Post by Kitkat on Sun Nov 15 2020, 14:08

World poverty rising as rich nations call in debt amid Covid

It is being called the “great reversal”. After decades of progress, the international goal of eradicating extreme poverty by 2030 is in jeopardy, former UK prime minister Gordon Brown has warned, as developing countries battling the coronavirus sacrifice their health and education systems to pay western and Chinese creditors, Jamie Doward reports.
“We need a comprehensive new plan that recognises the need for some countries to restructure and reduce debt,” Brown told the Observer. Ahead of a key G20 meeting next weekend, the former prime minister is calling for a global solution if an imminent child mortality crisis is to be averted.
His warning comes against a backdrop of rising poverty and reversals in child health. Data from the Johns Hopkins Medical School shows that an additional 6,000 children could die every day from preventable causes as the pandemic weakens health systems and disrupts routine services.
But the ability of many developing countries to tackle Covid-19 is severely limited by their debt obligations. With little financial support flowing from the IMF and the World Bank, some governments face a stark choice between repaying creditors or funding crucial public services.
It is predicted that African countries will pay out more than $10bn to creditors this year and next year alone. More than half will go to City asset management firms, like BlackRock, which employs former UK chancellor George Osborne on £650,000 a year , and Fidelity Investments.
Read more here

Further restrictions may be brought in for Northern Ireland

In Northern Ireland, Stormont’s health minister has said he is likely to be asking for further coronavirus restrictions before the scheduled reopening of the hospitality sector.
Robin Swann’s remarks raise the prospect of more executive discord in the near future, following a week when the coalition administration was consumed with in-fighting over its pandemic response, PA Media reports.
After four days of acrimonious exchanges, a majority of ministers finally backed a proposal that saw the region’s four-week circuit-break lockdown extended by one week followed by a phased reopening of hospitality businesses.
Swann had wanted a comprehensive two-week extension of the lockdown and said he only voted for the compromise deal as ministers had “run out of time” and a failure to strike a deal would have resulted in all the restrictions on hospitality lapsing by default on Friday night.
He told the BBC’s Sunday Politics programme, “I’m disappointed, I’m embarrassed and ashamed that it took us to Thursday to actually come up with this compromise agreement, that doesn’t go in my opinion far enough.”
The minister has made clear he will be asking for changes to the current plans before they are fully rolled out.
Kitkat
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Post by Kitkat on Sun Nov 15 2020, 14:45

A further nine people with Covid-19 have died in Northern Ireland, the Department of Health has said.
The death toll recorded by the department now stands at 855. There were also another 472 confirmed cases of the virus recorded in the last 24-hour reporting period.
A total of 46,831 people have tested positive for Covid-19 in Northern Ireland since the pandemic began.



Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune has finished treatment for COVID-19 but will undergo follow-up checks, the North African country’s presidency said on Sunday.
Tebboune, 75, was flown to a German hospital 19 days ago after he tested positive for coronavirus.
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Post by Kitkat on Sun Nov 15 2020, 17:19

Iranian opposition figure Mir Hossein Mousavi and his wife, who have been under house arrest for nearly a decade, have tested positive for Covid-19, an opposition website reported on Sunday.
Mousavi and his wife Zahra Rahnavard “were examined by a doctor at their home... and their general state of health is good,” added the Kaleme site, close to the former prime minister-turned-dissident,AFP reports.
Mousavi, now 79, along with Mehdi Karroubi, 83, were reformist candidates in the controversial election of 2009, which was won by hardliner Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. They claimed the vote was rigged, triggering months of mass protests dubbed the “Green Movement”.
Hundreds of thousands took to the streets, particularly in the capital Tehran, in the biggest challenge to the system since the Islamic revolution of 1979. Mousavi and Karroubi were placed under house arrest without trial in early 2011, along with their wives.
Iran has been battling the Middle East’s deadliest novel coronavirus outbreak since February. It has recorded almost 41,500 deaths out of 762,000 cases, according to official figures considered to be underestimated, even by Iranian officials.



The Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on Sunday declared “the general mobilisation of the nation and the government” after health authorities announced the highest ever number of daily cases in the country.
In the statement published by Iranian state media, President Rouhani said: “I call on all governmental organisations and other forces and institutions to rush to the aid of the health ministry and health workers with all possible means.”
As the Middle East’s worst-hit country, health officials report 12,543 new infections in the past 24-hours, a record high for the country, and bring the total cases in the nation to 762,068. The health ministry has also reported, according to Reuters, 459 new deaths, which brings the overall death toll to 41, 493.
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Post by Kitkat on Sun Nov 15 2020, 17:26

Vaccine scientist suggests a return to normality by ‘winter next year’, reports PA
One of the scientists behind the expected Covid-19 vaccine has said that the impact of the jab will appear by next summer, with normality expected by the winter.
Professor Ugur Sahin, chief executive of BioNTech, said that it was “absolutely essential” to have a high vaccination rate before next autumn to ensure a return to normality during winter.
Provisional results from the jab were found to be more than 90% effective but safety and efficacy data continue to be collected.
Professor Sahin told the BBC’s Andrew Marr show that “If everything continues to go well, we will start to deliver the vaccine end of this year, beginning next year.”




The UK reports 24, 962 new Covid cases on Sunday, down from by 1,898 from Saturday’s 26,860. Daily deaths have also fallen by 168 from Saturday’s 462 number of deaths reported within 28 days of testing positive. Marking the nation’s death toll as 51,934.




Italy has reported 546 COVID-related deaths, up from 544 the day before, the health ministry said on Sunday. The country also registered 33,979 new coronavirus infections over the past 24 hours, down from 37,255 on Saturday. The northern region of Lombardy, centred on Italy’s financial capital Milan, remained the hardest hit area on Sunday, reporting 8,060 new cases against 8,129 on Saturday.


Kitkat
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Post by Kitkat on Sun Nov 15 2020, 17:49

India is expected to fly doctors in from other regions of the country to double its testing capacity in an effort to contain the spread of coronavirus in the capital New Delhi, reports Reuters.
Home Minister Amit Shah said in a statement on Sunday that “hospital capacity and availability of other medical infrastructure should be ramped up considerably.”
Despite India’s daily increase in cases has been under the 50,000 mark for more than a week, the city-state of Delhi has recorded over 7,000 cases a day over the past five days, which, is a record level.
India’s health minister, Dr Harsh Vardhan, tweeted on Sunday: “Delhi has witnessed a huge surge in daily active cases which is likely to worsen over next few weeks”
The health minister has also said that the country will employ retired doctors and conduct door-to-door surveys to ramp-up tracking and combat the spread of the virus.
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Post by Kitkat on Sun Nov 15 2020, 23:11

Breaking News

Boris Johnson self-isolating after MP tests positive for Covid-19

The prime minister said he was contacted by NHS Test and Trace on Sunday but is not showing symptoms.
Mr Johnson on Thursday spent about 35 minutes with Ashfield MP Lee Anderson who has since tested positive.
The news came as No 10 said Mr Johnson would make "critical announcements" about coronavirus and "levelling up" the UK over the coming weeks.
In an announcement planned before Mr Johnson was told to self-isolate, Downing Street said there would be a "clear signal" of his "ongoing ambitions for the United Kingdom".
It said Mr Johnson would chair "key Covid meetings" and work with Chancellor Rishi Sunak to devise the upcoming spending review with an aim to fulfil his promise to "build back better".

But No 10's effort to start the week afresh following the departure of two of Mr Johnson's top aides amid an internal power struggle was overshadowed by news the prime minister was self-isolating.
Mr Johnson wrote on Twitter on Sunday night: "Today I was notified by NHS Test and Trace that I must self-isolate as I have been in contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19.
"I have no symptoms, but am following the rules and will be working from No10 as I continue to lead the government's pandemic response."
A No 10 spokesman added: "The PM is well and does not have any symptoms of Covid-19."
Read more here

    Current date/time is Wed Jan 20 2021, 03:42