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Coronavirus world toll nears 200,000; U.N. pushes for global vaccine effort

WASHINGTON DC, USA –  The global coronavirus death toll approached 200,000 on Saturday, April 25, as the United Nations launched an international push for a vaccine to defeat the pandemic. Governments around the world are struggling to limit the economic devastation unleashed by the virus, which has infected nearly 2.8 million ........»»

Category: newsSource: rappler rapplerApr 25th, 2020

World virus deaths top 800,000 as nations ramp up measures

The global death toll from the new coronavirus has surpassed 800,000, according to an AFP count on Saturday, with numerous countries ramping up restrictions in an effort to battle an eruption of new cases......»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsAug 23rd, 2020

WHO warns of drawn out pandemic as South Africa cases top 500,000

The UN health agency warned that the coronavirus pandemic would be lengthy and could lead to “response fatigue”, as the case count in South Africa topped half a million. Although many Latin American countries have begun relaxing stay-at-home measures, the virus is still spreading quickly across much of the region Six months after the World Health Organization declared a global emergency, the novel coronavirus has killed more than 680,000 people and infected more than 17.5 million, according to an AFP tally. South Africa is by far the hardest hit country in Africa, accounting for more than half of diagnosed infections, although President Cyril Ramaphosa said the fatality rate is lower than the global average. Health authorities had been expecting a surge in cases after the gradual loosening of a strict lockdown that was imposed at the end of March. Nigeria on Saturday also announced it would ease a lockdown in the commercial capital Lagos, allowing churches and mosques to reopen next week.  An emergency WHO committee reviewing the pandemic “highlighted the anticipated lengthy duration of this COVID-19 outbreak, noting the importance of sustained community, national, regional, and global response efforts”. “WHO continues to assess the global risk level of COVID-19 to be very high,” it said in its latest statement. The agency also said the effects of the pandemic “will be felt for decades to come”. Mexico overtook Britain to become the third hardest hit country in virus deaths — after Brazil and the United States — with more than 46,600 fatal cases. Although many Latin American countries have begun relaxing stay-at-home measures, the virus is still spreading quickly across much of the region, which has now recorded more than four million cases and almost 200,000 deaths. Half of them are in Brazil, where President Jair Bolsonaro said he believes “nearly everyone” will catch the virus eventually, after himself recovering from it. The US, the hardest-hit country in the world, has now tallied more than 4.6 million cases and 154,319 deaths. Vaccine race The outlook was bleak in Asia as well, where India and the Philippines reported record increases in new daily infections. “We are waging a losing battle against COVID-19, and we need to draw up a consolidated, definitive plan of action,” said an open letter signed by 80 Filipino medical associations. Japan’s Okinawa declared a state of emergency after a record jump in cases on the islands — many linked to US military forces stationed there. The pandemic has spurred a race for a vaccine with several Chinese companies at the forefront, while Russia has set a target date of September to roll out its own medicine. However, US infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci said it was unlikely his country would use any vaccine developed in either nation. “I do hope that the Chinese and the Russians are actually testing the vaccine before they are administering the vaccine to anyone,” he said. As part of its “Operation Warp Speed”, the US government will pay pharmaceutical giants Sanofi and GSK up to $2.1 billion for the development of a COVID-19 vaccine, the companies said. ‘Day of freedom’ France, Spain, Portugal and Italy all reported huge contractions in their economies for the April-June quarter, while Europe as a whole saw gross domestic product fall by 12.1 percent.  Daily case numbers in Switzerland have crept up again in recent weeks, while Norway recorded its first virus death in two weeks. At least 36 crew members confined to a Norwegian cruise ship have tested positive for the new coronavirus, the operator Hurtigruten said on Saturday.  Despite the resurgence in cases, there have been demonstrations in Europe against the curbs.  Thousands protested in Berlin on Saturday urging “a day of freedom” from the restrictions, with some demonstrators dubbing the pandemic “the biggest conspiracy theory”. In South Korea, the elderly leader of a secretive sect at the centre of the country’s early coronavirus outbreak was arrested for allegedly hindering the government’s effort to contain the epidemic. People linked to Lee Man-hee’s Shincheonji Church of Jesus accounted for more than half of the South’s coronavirus cases in February and March, but the country has since appeared to have brought the virus under control. The pandemic has also continued to cause mayhem in the travel and tourism sectors, with more airlines announcing mass job cuts. Latin America’s biggest airline, the Brazilian-Chilean group LATAM, said it would lay off least 2,700 crew, and British Airways pilots overwhelmingly voted to accept a deal cutting wages by 20 percent, with 270 jobs lost......»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsAug 2nd, 2020

Virus deaths top 250,000 as billions pledged for vaccine push

The global death toll from the coronavirus pandemic topped a quarter of a million on Tuesday, with the US government predicting a further surge in fatalities as an international vaccine drive garnered $8 billion in pledges. The dire forecast from the United States came as much of the Western world emerged from weeks of lockdown, […].....»»

Category: newsSource:  manilatimes_netRelated NewsMay 5th, 2020

Vaccine drive expands as COVID probe criticises global response

Countries around the world stepped up their coronavirus vaccine campaigns Monday, with Russia offering jabs to all citizens, while an independent probe found fault with the early response to the pandemic......»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsJan 19th, 2021

Biden to sign executive orders on Day 1, amid high alert for inauguration

Joe Biden’s top aide said Saturday the incoming president would sign about a dozen executive orders on his first day in office, as police fearing violence from Trump supporters staged a nationwide security operation ahead of the inauguration. Authorities in Washington, where Wednesday’s inauguration will take place, said they arrested a man with a loaded handgun and more than 500 rounds of ammunition at a security checkpoint, underscoring the tension in the US capital which is resembling a war zone. However, the man’s family told US media he was a security guard, rejecting the idea he was intent on causing harm. Incoming Biden chief of staff Ron Klain said in a memo to new White House senior staff that the executive orders would address the pandemic, the ailing US economy, climate change and racial injustice in America. “All of these crises demand urgent action,” Klain said in the memo. “In his first ten days in office, President-elect Biden will take decisive action to address these four crises, prevent other urgent and irreversible harms, and restore America’s place in the world,” Klain added. As he inherits the White House from Donald Trump, Biden’s plate is overflowing with acute challenges. The US is fast approaching 400,000 dead from the Covid-19 crisis and logging well over a million new cases a week as the coronavirus spreads out of control. The economy is ailing, with 10 million fewer jobs available compared to the start of the pandemic. Biden this week unveiled plans to seek $1.9 trillion to revive the economy through new stimulus payments and other aid, and plans a blitz to accelerate America’s stumbling Covid vaccine rollout effort. On Inauguration Day Biden, as previously promised, will sign orders including ones for the US to rejoin the Paris climate accord and reverse Trump’s ban on entry of people from certain Muslim majority countries, Klain said. “President-elect Biden will take action — not just to reverse the gravest damages of the Trump administration — but also to start moving our country forward,” Klain said. – 500 rounds of ammunition – Meanwhile, Washington was under a state of high alert after a mob of President Donald Trump’s supporters stormed the Capitol on January 6. The assault left five people dead, including a police officer. Security officials have warned that armed pro-Trump extremists, possibly carrying explosives, pose a threat to Washington as well as state capitals over the coming week. Thousands of National Guard troops have been deployed in Washington and streets have been blocked off downtown with concrete barriers. On Friday night, police arrested a Virginia man at a security checkpoint where he tried to use an “unauthorized” credential to access the restricted area where Biden will be inaugurated. As officers checked the credential against the authorized access list, one noticed decals on the back of Wesley Beeler’s pick-up truck that said “Assault Life,” with an image of a rifle, and another with the message: “If they come for your guns, give ’em your bullets first,” according to a document filed in Washington, DC Superior Court. Under questioning, Beeler told officers he had a Glock handgun in the vehicle. A search uncovered a loaded handgun, more than 500 rounds of ammunition, shotgun shells and a magazine for the gun, the court document said. Beeler was arrested on charges including possession of an unregistered firearm and unlawful possession of ammunition. But Beeler’s father Paul told The New York Times his son had been working as a security guard on the Capitol grounds. Asked if the younger Beeler supported a peaceful transition of power, Paul Beeler told the newspaper, “That’s the reason he’s there.” In addition to the heavy security presence in Washington, law enforcement was out in force in state capitals around the country to ward off potential political violence. Mass protests that had been planned for the weekend did not materialize on Saturday, with security far outnumbering Trump supporters at several fortified statehouses, US media reported. In St Paul, Minnesota, for example, hundreds of law enforcement officers, some armed with long guns, ringed the Capitol with National Guard troops providing backup.  The number of protesters totaled about 50......»»

Category: newsSource:  mb.com.phRelated NewsJan 17th, 2021

World Roundup: US vaccine set to be injected into millions

The Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine was set to begin leaving the company's Michigan factory on Sunday, ready to be injected into the arms of millions of the most vulnerable Americans as the global death toll approached 1.6 million......»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsDec 14th, 2020

Duterte appoints Galvez as vaccine czar; ‘good choice’, say lawmakers

By Genalyn D. Kabiling and Charissa Luci-Atienza In a meeting with government officials on the disaster response Monday, President Duterte announced he wanted former AFP chief and now Presidential peace adviser Carlito Galvez Jr Galvez to lead the government’s vaccine acquisition and distribution effort.  Presidential Peace Adviser Carlito Galvez Jr. (NTF AGAINST COVID-19 / FILE PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN) Duterte said Galvez would be the only authorized official to negotiate for the country’s’ vaccine supply. He expressed his dislike with the creation of committees since the process will take long.  “As I have said earlier during the start of the COVID, I only want one line of authority coming from dito sa the Task Force sa pagbili ng bakuna, the negotiation, manufacture, negotiation, production or distribution is ibinigay ko ‘yan kay Secretary Galvez,” he said. “I have great faith in Charlie to really come up with the solutions for the problem,” he added. Presidential spokesman Harry Roque defended the additional assignment given to Galvez, saying the planned immunization drive would involve “more of a logistics challenge than a medical challenge.” Galvez, who joined the Duterte Cabinet in 2018, also currently serves as chief implementer of the government’s plan to fight the coronavirus outbreak. Meanwhile, members of the House of Representatives lauded Galvez’s designation as vaccine war, among them: Representatives Michael Defensor, Roger Mercado, Ronnie Ong, Alfred Vargas and Rosanna Vergara. “It’s more of a logistics challenge than a medical challenge,” Roque explained. He said the only medical issues involved in the vaccine purchase are related to safety and efficacy of the drugs. This matter, he said, will be handled by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).  He said Galvez is expected to continue his close coordination with the Department of Health and other agencies that will be involved in the vaccination drive. “Gen. Galvez would have the hindsight of what happened and the understanding of the COVID baseline. What we need is the leadership and managerial skills in taking the lead of the COVID vaccine campaign,” Defensor, chairperson of the House Committee on Public Accounts, said in a text message when asked if the vaccine czar should have been a medical doctor.  “I support the President’s appointment of Sec Galvez.  Galvez is an innovative  administrator. He can be trusted to implement the program well,”  Mercado said in a separate text message.  “We are happy that the president is preparing early and appointing someone to lead is good news,” Ong said.  Vargas also rallied behind the  the decision of President Duterte to appoint Galvez, saying that “we don’t need a doctor but a manager for this job.” Vergara also gave her vote of confidence to Galvez.  “Being the COVID-19 policy chief implementer, he has a clear overview of the COVID-19 situation in the county and such knowledge is very crucial in the distribution of the vaccine. I am sure, there are medical experts who advise the good Secretary,” she said.  “I am assuming  the vaccine chosen has already passed all testing and FDA approvals , the challenge will be to properly allocate and distribute it fairly across the country to the most vulnerable  and this is the challenge anyone who heads this Task Force will face– how do you properly allocate this should the vaccine supply be limited because of world wide demand? Thus, the need to plan for equally expedited distribution and delivery. Building a delivery system that is quick, fair and will not result to inequitable distribution,”  Vergara added......»»

Category: newsSource:  mb.com.phRelated NewsNov 3rd, 2020

WHO coronavirus vaccine trials to cost P89 million – DOH

MANILA, Philippines — The government expects to spend P89 million in hosting the World Health Organization (WHO)-led Solidarity Trials but the cost of the potential COVID-19 vaccine will be shouldered by the global health agency, according to the Department of Health (DOH). Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire said the amount was the country’s small contribution […] The post WHO coronavirus vaccine trials to cost P89 million – DOH appeared first on Cebu Daily News......»»

Category: newsSource:  inquirerRelated NewsOct 4th, 2020

Global coronavirus death toll passes one million

More than one million people have died from coronavirus, according to an AFP toll, marking a grim milestone in the spread of the disease that has ravaged the world economy, inflamed diplomatic tensions and upended lives from Indian slums to New York City......»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsSep 29th, 2020

Global coronavirus death toll passes one million

New infection control restrictions in Europe stirred anger and frustration on  Sunday as around the world the global coronavirus toll inched towards one million dead......»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsSep 28th, 2020

60 nations join Covax access plan

GENEVA, Switzerland (AFP) — More than 60 wealthy nations have joined a WHO-backed program to facilitate poor countries’ access to coronavirus vaccines, but the United States and China are not on the list published Monday. The World Health Organization (WHO) has in coordination with the global vaccine alliance group Gavi and the Coalition for Epidemic […] The post 60 nations join Covax access plan appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsSep 22nd, 2020

COVID-19 cases in Philippines breach 187,000 as death toll nears 3,000

(Updated 4:22 p.m.) Over 22.53 million cases of the coronavirus, including around 789,000 deaths, have been recorded globally according to the latest World Health Organization figures......»»

Category: newsSource:  philstarRelated NewsAug 22nd, 2020

Aussie PM pushes for mandatory vaccine

Sydney---Australia’s leader called Wednesday for coronavirus immunisations to be mandatory, wading into ethical and safety debates raging around the world as the race to develop a vaccine gathers pace......»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsAug 19th, 2020

Countries tighten measures as global virus death toll nears 700,000

France and the Netherlands are gearing up for stricter mask-wearing rules to fight the coronavirus as the global death toll from the pandemic neared 700,000......»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsAug 5th, 2020

Millions back under lockdown in Philippines amid surge in virus cases

Millions of people in the Philippines were ordered to stay home Tuesday as global coronavirus infections kept soaring, with the World Health Organization warning against relying on a vaccine "silve.....»»

Category: newsSource:  philippinetimesRelated NewsAug 4th, 2020

Global deaths surge 650,000

PARIS (AFP) — Officials around the world reintroduced a raft of restrictions Monday — from beach closures to quarantine measures — to try to tamp down coronavirus hotspots as the official global death toll passed 650,000. European countries trying to repair the economic damage caused by the earlier lockdowns struggled to balance keeping the lifeline […] The post Global deaths surge 650,000 appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsAug 1st, 2020

Global virus deaths pass 650,000 as new surges prompt fresh curbs

Officials around the world reintroduced a raft of restrictions Monday---from beach closures to quarantine measures---to try to tamp down coronavirus hotspots as the official global death toll passed 650,000......»»

Category: newsSource:  thestandardRelated NewsJul 28th, 2020

Global coronavirus death toll passes 650,000

Officials around the world reintroduced a raft of restrictions Monday — from beach closures to quarantine measures — to try to tamp down coronavirus hotspots as the official global death toll passed 650,000. European countries trying to repair the economic damage caused by the earlier lockdowns struggled to balance keeping the lifeline of tourism open […] The post Global coronavirus death toll passes 650,000 appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsJul 28th, 2020

Chinese-made dose enters final stage of testing

BRASILIA (AFP) — A Chinese-made vaccine against the new coronavirus entered the final stage of testing Tuesday in Brazil, where volunteers received the first doses of what officials hope will be a game-changer in the global pandemic. The vaccine, developed by private Chinese pharmaceutical firm Sinovac Biotech, became the third in the world to enter […] The post Chinese-made dose enters final stage of testing appeared first on Daily Tribune......»»

Category: newsSource:  tribuneRelated NewsJul 22nd, 2020

Global stocks rise as US earnings season looms

World stock markets advanced Monday, helped by investor confidence in upcoming US quarterly earnings and the business outlook, and by hopes for progress towards a coronavirus vaccine, dealers said......»»

Category: lifestyleSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJul 14th, 2020