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"COVID-19 Lockdown Exit Analysis" 11th Jun 2020

News Highlights

Advisor: UK could have halved deaths by locking down a week earlier

Neil Ferguson, one of PM Boris Johnson's top scientific advisers, whose modelling persuaded the PM to finally impose lockdown in the UK on March 23, said before a Commons Science Committee that total deaths could have been reduced by half if the lockdown had come in a week earlier.

Thailand and Vietnam stepping into a new normal

Major cities in Thailand and Vietnam seem to be going back to a pre-Covid state of affairs, with traffic jams, crowds at football stadiums and reopened restaurants, schools and nightclubs. Authorities in both countries have been encouraged by close to zero new local Covid-19 infection rates in recent weeks, though fears remain of a second wave.

Covid-19 cases in Africa top 200,000

Africa, no stranger to previous outbreaks of diseases like Ebola and HIV/AIDS, imposed strict lockdowns, closed borders and brought in contact tracing systems to deal with the coronavirus pandemic. While total infected numbers have not been as high as the U.S. or countries in Western Europe, the continent crossed a grim milestone of 200,000 cases, amidst a growing concern that limited testing capacity in some countries are leading them to under-report numbers.

Seniors and minors in Turkey now free to step out as lockdown ease a little more

Turkish President, Recip Tayyip Erdogan, further eased coronavirus restrictions by lifting stay-at-home orders for minors and seniors aged over 65. he said that the order, in place for two months, would be lifted on condition that children under 18 were accompanied by parents, while those over 65 could leave their homes only between 10am and 8pm.

Lockdown Exit
Italy PM says prosecutors to question him over coronavirus response
Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said he will be questioned by prosecutors on Friday over the way the coronavirus outbreak was handled in the northern Italian city of Bergamo, one of the areas most badly affected by the epidemic. “I am not at all worried,” Conte told reporters outside the prime minister’s office in Rome. “We will speak on Friday and I will pass on all the facts I am aware of,” he said, adding that he was not under investigation himself. The prosecutors are looking into why badly hit areas around Bergamo were not closed down early in the outbreak, and have already questioned the regional governor of Lombardy, which includes Bergamo, and Lombardy’s health chief.
'We are still in a pandemic': In some states, summer months may not provide a hoped-for lull
Banner Health, the state's largest health care system, has reported that since May 15, the number of COVID-19 patients on ventilators has quadrupled. "This trend is concerning to us," the hospital system wrote in a tweet Monday. Dr. Matthew Heinz, an internist with Tucson Medical Center in Arizona, has witnessed the rise in COVID-19 cases following a lull. "Our case numbers were trending down in terms of hospitalizations," Heinz said. Within the past week, though, he and his colleagues have noticed an uptick in confirmed and in probable cases of the coronavirus, at least in that hospital. Two recent confirmed COVID-19 admissions were among ride-share drivers — one in his mid-twenties, and the other in his 50s.
Going viral: A walk on a ‘new’ beach has never felt so good
I went for a walk on a new beach on Monday afternoon that’s some 25 kilometres from my house. Under new rules that kicked into effect in Ireland on Monday, I have a new sense of freedom – even if there are still many restrictions in place. Actually, chances are that you’ve seen the beach I walked on. If you’ve watched the Tom Hanks movie Saving Private Ryan, then you’ll be familiar with Curracloe Beach. It was the stand-in for Omaha Beach, where United States forces landed on D-Day 76 years ago on Normandy.
What Spain, Portugal, Italy, Greece and Turkey say about an airbridge with the UK
There are a number of countries planning to reopen their borders to tourists in the coming weeks. However, in recent weeks there has been a concerns raised by a number of countries over the coronavirus record of the UK. The hope is that the government can agree to 'airbridges' which would allow Brits to travel freely to and from those nations.
Hairdressers, beauty salons reopen in Malaysia
Malaysia reopened nearly all economic and social activities Wednesday after nearly three months of lockdown successfully brought down virus infections. Malaysians can now travel for domestic holidays, get their hair cut and visit street markets, while schools and religious activities will gradually resume. While happy to be back at work, hairstylist Shirley Chai said she is nervous about the strict health rules for hairdressers. She is especially worried about the one-hour time limit for each client. The government says the country will enter a "recovery" phase until the end of August, and warned that restrictions will be reinstated if infections soar again.Night clubs, pubs, karaoke, theme parks and reflexology centers will stay shut during the recovery period.
Africa’s coronavirus cases top 200,000
World Health Organisation director general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, who is Ethiopian, warned Africa to “prepare for the worst” back in March, but the virus has been slow to spread on the continent. Expertise developed from previous outbreaks of diseases such as Ebola, HIV/Aids and cholera proved useful, and many countries moved quickly to impose lockdowns, closing borders and bringing in contact tracing systems. However, there is now growing concern that some countries are under-reporting cases due to limited testing capacities, or downplaying their figures because of political pressure.
Canada's political consensus over coronavirus aid programs starts to fray
Canada’s political consensus over help for those hit by the coronavirus outbreak began to fray on Wednesday when opposition legislators blocked a government move to approve a proposed expansion of benefits.
Egypt- WHO announces 670000 COVID-19 infections across Eastern Mediterranean
The World Health Organization's (WHO) Eastern Mediterranean region has reported almost 670,000 coronavirus (COVID-19) infections and over 15,000 deaths, according to the WHO's Regional Director for the area, Dr Ahmed Al-Mandhari. In an announcement made on Wednesday, Al-Mandhari added that the Eastern Mediterranean region's figures for the virus make up almost 10% of the global caseload.
Coronavirus Has Thailand Putting out Multiple Fires at Once
The novel coronavirus has led to a diverse array of crises for Thailand. Paramount are the nation’s healthcare and economy. But the pandemic has also impacted Thailand politics, with Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha delaying a necessary cabinet reshuffle and extending a state of emergency. Analysts say the postponed reshuffle has placed the government in political limbo. The military, which came to power in a 2014 putsch, governs Thailand with a coalition of parties. One of them, the Palang Pracharath Party, saw 18 members resign last week after a schism over how Thailand is responding to Covid-19. The resignations force an election within the party, which in turn could change which party members are part of the executive cabinet.
Coronavirus infections in Denmark are FALLING are lockdown eased and restaurants and shops reopened
Just 14 new Covid-19 cases were counted on 9 June - the lowest in two months Denmark has been in phase two of easing lockdown measures since late May. New cases continue to fall even as more tests are carried out, officials said
Turkey lifts lockdown for seniors, minors:
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan lifts stay-at-home orders for minors and for people aged over 65. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said Turkey is lifting stay-at-home orders for people aged over 65 and for minors as part of a further easing of restrictions.
Peru coronavirus crisis deepens: oxygen in focus
The covid-19 (coronavirus) crisis continues to deepen in Peru, where gasworld understands there is a significant supply shortage of oxygen and individuals have been pictured taking supply into their own hands.
Exclusive: Half of Singapore's new COVID-19 cases are symptomless - taskforce head
Tiny Singapore has one of the highest infection tallies in Asia, with more than 38,000 cases, because of outbreaks in cramped dormitories housing thousands of migrant workers. It reopened schools and some businesses last week after a near two-month lockdown, but many residents are still required to work from home and mix socially only with their families. “Based on our experience, for every symptomatic case you would have at least one asymptomatic case,” said Lawrence Wong, adding that the discovery was made in recent weeks as Singapore ramped up testing. “That is exactly why we have been very cautious in our reopening plans,” Wong said.
Exit Strategies
Coronavirus: PM's plans to get more pupils back to school 'lie in tatters', Starmer says
Government plans to get more pupils back to school in England during the coronavirus pandemic "lie in tatters", Sir Keir Starmer has said, as he told the prime minister the UK's number of COVID-19 deaths should "haunt us". The Labour leader and Boris Johnson clashed in the Commons at PMQs. It was the first time they faced each other since it was confirmed ministers have dropped plans for all primary school pupils to return before the summer holidays during the coronavirus outbreak.
Ex-Ofsted chief: failure to plan for reopening of schools is ‘astonishing’
The government’s failure to plan to get children back to school safely is “absolutely astonishing” and must be remedied before September, Sir Michael Wilshaw, the former chief inspector of schools in England, has said. Wilshaw, who led Ofsted from 2012 until 2016, said schools will need to put in place recovery programmes, appeal to teachers to run catch-up classes over the summer and even allow some of the most affected to repeat their school year. The government has been criticised by MPs from all parties and unions for lacking a coherent plan, after announcing that primary schools in England would return in June before backtracking this week. There is particular annoyance after ministers revealed that zoos, theme parks and outdoor cinemas would be able to open shortly – on the same day as confirming that not all primary schools could get back to operation before the end of the summer term.
Leicester parents told to self-isolate after coronavirus outbreak at Humberstone schools
Parents of pupils at Leicester primary schools which shut after a coronavirus outbreak have been told to self-isolate for 14 days. Humberstone Infants school and Humberstone Junior School have both been closed ‘for the foreseeable future’. Humberstone Academy, which runs both schools, took the decision after they were shut on Monday when a teacher tested positive for Covid-19. The schools reopened on Tuesday but have now closed. Annemarie Williams, the executive headteacher at the schools, which share a site in Main Street, sent an e-mail to parents last night telling them of the decision to close.
Netherlands sends first herring catch to German medics as coronavirus thank you
Some 4,000 new-season herrings are to be delivered to German medics as thanks for treating Dutch Covid-19 patients. The salty delicacies go to Münster clinic staff who coordinated Dutch transfers to German hospitals.
Malaysia to reopen schools in stages from June 24
Malaysia will begin reopening schools from June 24, its Education Minister said yesterday, as the country enters recovery mode after three months of strict curbs on movement and businesses to contain the spread of the coronavirus. South-east Asia's third-largest economy began lifting most coronavirus restrictions from yesterday, after the government declared that the outbreak was under control. Schools will be reopened in stages, beginning with students facing public examinations and equivalent international school examinations this year, Education Minister Mohd Radzi Md Jidin said.
Thailand, Vietnam and the ‘Covid dividend’
Bangkok, Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City are roaring back to life after their coronavirus-related partial lockdowns. Thanks to a disciplined public health response by their governments, companies and people, Thailand and Vietnam are now getting back to a “new normal” that looks suspiciously like the old one — traffic jams and all. The beaches nearest to Bangkok are heaving with visitors. Vietnam’s schools, restaurants, cinemas and nightclubs are open again, while football matches at stadiums packed with cheering spectators have been allowed to resume. Most Vietnamese have stopped wearing masks. While a second wave of infections is a risk here, as everywhere, the authorities in both countries have been encouraged by a drop in new local Covid-19 infections to zero in recent weeks.
Poland rolls out privacy-secure coronavirus tracking app
Poland has released its latest version of a smartphone application to help to track coronavirus outbreaks, which has been adapted to address concerns about privacy, the country’s digital minister said on Tuesday. Dozens of countries have launched or plan contact tracing apps using either Bluetooth or location-tracking technology to notify people quickly of possible coronavirus exposure. But the first generation of contact tracing apps rushed out in March and April raised privacy alarms. Poland’s latest app comes after the country lifted some restrictions aimed at curbing the spread of the virus and after a few days of record high new coronavirus cases mainly due to the spread among miners.
Partisan Exits
Egyptian state media accuses doctors of treason for speaking up on coronavirus crisis
Egyptian doctors have expressed anger in recent days, accusing the authorities of neglecting them and failing to protect and provide them with the protective equipment they need. In response, media outlets close to the government accused the doctors of treason, not sacrificing for the sake of the nation and even taking part in plans by hostile foreign countries or the Muslim Brotherhood. Within one week, 12 Egyptian doctors died of the novel coronavirus. On May 26, four doctors died, followed by eight others in the same week, leading to mass resignations by doctors at al-Munira Hospital in Cairo. Since the coronavirus crisis began and up until June 1, 33 doctors have died from COVID-19, while 372 have tested positive for the virus. Of that number, about 80 have recovered, Karim Mesbah, member of the Doctors Syndicate Council, said in a June 2 press statement. On May 25, the syndicate issued a strongly worded statement accusing the Ministry of Health of failing to protect medical staff.
Nigeria to cut healthcare spending by 40% despite coronavirus cases climbing
Plans by Nigeria’s government to cut healthcare spending risk undermining the country’s coronavirus response and severely impacting already strained services, health and transparency groups have warned. Funding for local, primary healthcare services will be cut by more than 40% this year in a revised budget expected to be passed into law in the coming weeks. The proposed cuts could affect immunisations, childcare, maternal healthcare and family planning services.
Brazil restores coronavirus data after controversy, court ruling
Brazil on Tuesday restored detailed COVID-19 data to its official national website following controversy over the removal of cumulative totals and a ruling by a Supreme Court justice that the full set of information be reinstated. The move followed days of mounting pressure from across the political spectrum and allegations the government was trying to mask the severity of the outbreak, now the world's second-largest.
EU says China behind 'huge wave' of Covid-19 disinformation
China has been accused by Brussels of running disinformation campaigns inside the European Union, as the bloc set out a plan to tackle a “huge wave” of false facts about the coronavirus pandemic. The European commission said Russia and China were running “targeted influence operations and disinformation campaigns in the EU, its neighbourhood, and globally”. While the charge against Russia has been levelled on many occasions, this is the first time the EU executive has publicly named China as a source of disinformation. French politicians were furious when a Chinese embassy website claimed in mid-April, at the height of Europe’s pandemic, that care workers had abandoned their jobs leaving residents to die. The unnamed Chinese diplomat also claimed falsely that 80 French lawmakers had used a racist slur against the head of the World Health Organization, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.
Continued Lockdown
Argentina's Coronavirus Infections on Rise, Exceeds 1000 New Cases Per Day
Argentina last week extended a mandatory lockdown in Buenos Aires, which accounts for the country's highest concentration of confirmed infections. Other areas have moved to "mandatory and preventive social distancing." Much of the nation had been under a shelter-in-place order since March 20. The country has a commercial flight ban until Sept. 1, one of the world's strictest travel measures during the pandemic.
Burundi president dies of illness suspected to be coronavirus
The outgoing president of Burundi has died of a sudden illness, suspected by many to be Covid-19. The cause of Pierre Nkurunziza’s death was described as a heart attack in a government statement. The 55-year-old was due to stand down in August following elections last month. It was unclear exactly when he died. A government statement said the president, a keen sports enthusiast, had attended a game of volleyball on Saturday but fell ill that night and was taken to hospital. The former footballer’s health improved on Sunday but “surprisingly, on morning of Monday June 8, 2020, his health suddenly deteriorated and he had a heart attack”. The statement described Nkurunziza’s death as “unexpected” and asked people to remain calm. Seven days of mourning have been announced.
Colombia & Peru: Assisting thousands of Venezuelan refugees amidst COVID-19 - Colombia
Humanity & Inclusion is supporting more than 2,000 Venezuelans in Medellín, the second largest city in Colombia, in conjunction with Medellín city council. Our teams provide them with psychological support by organizing one-to-one and group sessions, and help them complete legal formalities to access basic services such as health care. We also organize sports and cultural activities to strengthen the social cohesion and social and cultural inclusion of Venezuelans in Medellín. Our teams run similar activities in Bogota and Barranquilla on the Atlantic coast.
Bulgaria extends epidemic emergency on COVID-19 until end of June
The Bulgarian government on Wednesday approved the extension of a nationwide epidemic emergency until June 30 in a bid to curb the spread of COVID-19. The epidemic emergency took effect on May 14 with a duration of one month, replacing the state of emergency which was implemented on March 13. The implementation of anti-epidemic measures has contributed to slowing down the COVID-19 epidemic in the country and reducing pressure on the healthcare system, the government said in a statement. "The prolongation of the epidemic emergency will help slow down and limit the spread of the COVID-19 epidemic by applying temporary anti-epidemic measures," the statement said. Meanwhile, it would improve the preparedness of the health care and other systems to respond to a subsequent wave, the statement said.
Nobel laureate Mukwege quits DR Congo Covid-19 team, blasts govt response
Nobel winner Denis Mukwege on Wednesday said he had resigned as head of a coronavirus taskforce in an eastern province of DR Congo, blaming organisational problems, outpaced strategy and slow testing. Mukwege, a DR Congo gynaecologist who shared the Nobel Peace Prize in 2018 for his work against sexual violence in war, was appointed on March 30 to lead a committee in South Kivu province. Panzi Hospital, where Mukwege treats abused women, is also located in the province. In a statement, he said there had been "weaknesses in organisation and clarity between the various teams in charge of the response to the pandemic in South Kivu." "We are at the start of an exponential... curve (in infections) and we can no longer apply a strategy that would be purely preventive," Mukwege said.
Why Kenyans are begging their president for freedom
In our series of letters from African journalists, Joseph Warungu captures the frustrations of Kenyans who have been pleading with the government to ease the measures taken to curb the spread of Covid-19. "Mr President, we beg you - please, please set us free!" These are not the words of people held in detention or mandatory quarantine after being roughed up by Kenyan police for not wearing face masks. Instead, it is the cry of many Kenyans who cannot stand the lockdown measures anymore. Before President Uhuru Kenyatta addressed the nation on Saturday, social media had been awash with memes, pleas and videos urging him to ease the lockdown measures
Peru in mourning: ‘The virus has changed everything’
The country reeling from pandemic is on track for one of the longest lockdowns in the world. There are many reasons for Peru’s brutal coronavirus numbers, not least its informal labour force. While this is an issue across Latin America and the whole developing world, it is particularly acute in Peru. The IMF says 70 per cent of employment is informal, against a Latin American average of 54 per cent. Many Peruvians say they have to break lockdown to work and survive.
Mexico Coronavirus Peak Still Weeks Away, Pandemic Czar Says
New coronavirus cases in Mexico are expected to keep rising, a top health official said on Tuesday, even as the government pushes a gradual reopening of the economy launched at the beginning of this month. "We still haven't reached the maximum point," Deputy Health Minister Hugo Lopez-Gatell told a morning news conference. "For several more weeks, we will keep announcing there are more cases today than yesterday." His assessment was largely echoed by officials from the World Health Organization and its Pan American Health Organization during a webcast news conference later in the day. While Mexico has yet to reach peak infections, they said, officials should boost testing before any wide-scale economic reopening and stick to safety measures, including social distancing.
Scientific Viewpoint
Dr. Fauci says coronavirus pandemic is his 'worst nightmare' and 'isn't over yet'
Dr. Anthony Fauci said Tuesday the coronavirus pandemic has turned out to be his "worst nightmare" and warned that it's not over yet as 21 states across the country have seen an increase in cases. The director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and the nation's top infectious disease expert spoke at a BIO Digital virtual health-care conference about the continued spread of the coronavirus across the world four months into the pandemic. "Like oh, my goodness, when is it going to end?" he said. "It really is very complicated. So we're just at almost the beginning of really understanding." Fauci called the virus "highly transmissible" and said that "in a period of four months, it has devastated the world." "That’s millions and millions of infections worldwide," he continued. "And it isn’t over yet. And it’s condensed in a very, very small time frame."
Singapore to launch TraceTogether Token device for COVID-19 contact tracing
The first batch of these devices will be delivered in the latter half of this month, said Vivian Balakrishnan, Minister-in-charge of the Smart Nation initiative.
Coronavirus: UK could have ‘halved’ deaths by moving a week earlier
The UK could have saved half the lives lost to coronavirus if it introduced lockdown a week earlier, one of Boris Johnson’s top scientific advisers has told MPs. Neil Ferguson, whose modelling at Imperial College London persuaded the prime minister to impose a lockdown on March 23rd, was giving evidence to the Commons science committee. “The epidemic was doubling every three to four days before lockdown interventions were introduced. So had we introduced lockdown measures a week earlier, we would have reduced the final death toll by at least a half,” he said. “Whilst I think the measures, given what we knew about this virus then, in terms of its transmission and its lethality, were warranted, I’m second-guessing at this point. Certainly had we introduced them earlier we would have seen many fewer deaths.”
At least 58 doctors reported dead due to COVID-19 in Egypt | Daily Sabah
The number of Egyptian doctors to have died due to COVID-19 has risen to 58 as the government comes under fire for increasing infections and deaths among health care professionals. In the last 24 hours, three doctors have been reported dead due to the coronavirus, according to the Egyptian Medical Syndicate (EMS). Egypt's top medical union last month warned of a "complete collapse" of the country's health system, accusing the health ministry of negligence in failing to protect health care workers from the coronavirus. "The syndicate is warning that the health care system could completely collapse, leading to a catastrophe affecting the entire country if the ministry's negligence and lack of action toward medical staff is not rectified," the Egyptian Medical Syndicate (EMS) said in a statement.
No new COVID-19 cases after infected Missouri hairstylists worked with over 140. How?
Missouri health officials discovered no new coronavirus cases after two infected hairstylists served dozens of clients at a Great Clips hair salon. The Springfield-Greene County Health Department says the incubation period has passed after the hairstylists worked on 140 people at the location in Springfield. Six coworkers also were potentially exposed. “This is exciting news about the value of masking to prevent COVID-19,” Health Director Clay Goddard said in a news release. “We are studying more closely the details of these exposures, including what types of face coverings were worn and what other precautions were taken to lead to this encouraging result.”
Exclusive: Europe to accelerate trials of gene-engineered COVID-19 vaccines - sources
European officials aim to speed up trials for coronavirus vaccines containing genetically modified organisms, two EU sources told Reuters, in a move that could help shots developed by companies like AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson. The European Commission is expected to put forward the plans as early as next week. They are part of a wider EU strategy aimed at securing enough doses of a possible vaccine for the bloc as it fears lagging behind the United States and China. The reform is expected to reduce member states’ power to impose extra requirements on drug companies when they conduct clinical trials on medicines and vaccines containing genetically modified organisms (GMOs), according to the sources. In some countries like Italy and France, for example, treatments must receive authorisation from government environment or research departments, as well as from health and drug authorities, under rules that are up to 20 years old and also cover the more publicly sensitive area of GMO crops. This has long caused bottlenecks in a pharmaceutical industry that increasing relies on genetic engineering.
Potential COVID-19 vaccine from China shows promise in animal tests
A potential COVID-19 vaccine being developed by Chinese researchers showed promise in trials in monkeys, triggering antibodies and raising no safety issues, researchers said, and a human trial with more than 1,000 participants is under way. The vaccine candidate, called BBIBP-CorV, induced high-level neutralising antibodies that can block the virus from infecting cells in monkeys, rats, guinea pigs and rabbits, researchers said in a paper published in online by the medical journal Cell on Saturday. “These results support the further evaluation of BBIBP-CorV in a clinical trial,” researchers said in the paper. BBIBP-CorV, developed by Beijing Institute of Biological Products affiliated to state-owned China National Pharmaceutical Group (Sinopharm), is among five candidates China is testing in humans
Explainer: Summer might slow coronavirus but is unlikely to stop it
While warmer weather typically ends the annual flu season in temperate zones, climate alone has not stopped the COVID-19 pandemic from sweeping any part of the globe. In fact, outbreaks in hot and sunny Brazil and Egypt are growing. Still, recent data about how sunlight, humidity and outdoor breezes affect the virus gives some reason for optimism that summer could slow the spread.
Impact of seasons on coronavirus unclear, WHO's Ryan says
It is unclear how the arrival of winter in the southern hemisphere will impact the novel coronavirus, the head of the World Health Organization’s emergencies programme Mike Ryan said on Wednesday. “We don’t know how the coronavirus is going to be,” Ryan said during a virtual press conference. “Right now, we have no data to suggest that the virus will behave more aggressively or transmit more efficiently or not,” Ryan said, adding that the impact of summer’s arrival in the northern hemisphere was also unclear. “We cannot rely on an expectation that the season or the temperature will be the answer to (the disease’s spread),” he said.
Fujifilm plots $928M infusion at Danish biologics plant to double production capacity
Fujifilm made a massive investment in a former Biogen biologics facility in Denmark last year to help realize its global CDMO expansion plans. With that nearly $1 billion check behind it, Fujifilm is shelling out an almost equally gigantic infusion to double capacity at the Danish plant. Fujifilm will dole out a whopping $928 million at a former Biogen site in Denmark it acquired in August for $890 million, the Japanese drugmaker said Tuesday. The company's major capital outlay for its Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies CDMO site will dramatically expand the facility's bulk drug manufacturing capacity, finish/fill capabilities and packaging output by fall 2023. Fujifilm's infusion into its Denmark site comes weeks after the Japanese drugmaker agreed to set aside manufacturing space at the site for the Bill Gates-funded COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator. In late April, Fujifilm agreed to dedicate room at the Hillerød, Denmark, facility and "work with a selected pharmaceutical partner in supporting the swift manufacture and dedicated supply for patients with COVID-19 in lower-income countries," the drugmaker said in a release.
World faces worst food crisis for at least 50 years, UN warns
The world stands on the brink of a food crisis worse than any seen for at least 50 years, the UN has warned as it urged governments to act swiftly to avoid disaster. Better social protections for poor people are urgently needed as the looming recession following the coronavirus pandemic may put basic nutrition beyond their reach, the UN secretary general, António Guterres, said on Tuesday. “Unless immediate action is taken, it is increasingly clear that there is an impending global food emergency that could have long-term impacts on hundreds of millions of children and adults,” he said. “We need to act now to avoid the worst impacts of our efforts to control the pandemic.”
The coronavirus survives longer on surfaces when temperatures are low and humidity is high. That could explain why New York was hit so hard, while Singapore was not.
The coronavirus survives longer on surfaces when temperatures are low and humidity is high. That could explain why New York was hit so hard, while Singapore was not.
Coronavirus cases have not gone away. And neither has doctors' emotional trauma.
Underneath all the PPE (personal protective equipment), these health care heroes are suffering. As scores of them work extended hours to provide care daily for suffering patients, they also harbored fears about their personal health and the health of their colleagues and families. This psychological distress is compounded by co-workers who become critically ill or die.
Coronavirus Resurgence
Brazil's biggest cities start reopening as COVID-19 surges
Brazil’s most populous state Sao Paulo reported a record number of COVID-19 deaths for the second day running on Wednesday even as its homonymous metropolis allowed shops to resume business and prepared to reopen its malls. The state, the epicenter of the pandemic in Brazil, recorded 340 new deaths in the last 24 hours, raising its confirmed death toll to 9,862, a fourth of the country’s total fatalities, the governor’s office said. That did not stop shoppers flocking to the 25 de Março shopping district in Sao Paulo city, where around half of the businesses were open on Wednesday. Although stores considered essential, such as supermarkets and pharmacies, have remained open, most shops in Sao Paulo have been shut since March. Shoppers packed the streets. Stores allowed in only people wearing masks and provided alcohol gel. Some took the temperature of shoppers at the entrance.
Coronavirus in Germany: People in Göttingen feeling like prisoners
The Iduna housing complex, a forbidding concrete block located just outside Göttingen's city center, is where most of the newly infected people live. At the beginning of June, the city of 120,000 in the region of Lower Saxony reported hundreds of new infections. The outbreak was traced back to a hookah bar, which should not have been open. Many of the infected are among the 700 inhabitants of the Iduna complex, where a mobile testing center was quickly set up in the building's underground parking area. Doctors and medical students conducted tests at the rate of one every three minutes.
Hospitalizations in at least nine states are on the rise; U.S. nears 2 million cases
As the number of new coronavirus cases continues to increase worldwide, and more than a dozen states and Puerto Rico are recording their highest seven-day average of new cases since the pandemic began, hospitalizations in at least nine states have been on the rise since Memorial Day. In Texas, North and South Carolina, California, Oregon, Arkansas, Mississippi, Utah and Arizona, there are an increasing number of patients under supervised care since the holiday weekend because of covid-19 infections. The spikes generally began in the past couple weeks and in most states, are trending higher. There have been more than 7.1 million cases of covid-19 officially reported worldwide, including more than 405,000 fatalities, though the totals are likely higher. Nearly 2 million cases have been reported in the United States, with more than 109,000 of those fatal.
Arizona's COVID-19 spread is 'alarming' and action is needed, experts warn
Experts around the country and in Arizona are raising alarms about the state's COVID-19 situation because cases and hospitalizations have increased for the past two weeks. The increase in cases can't solely be attributed to increased testing in Arizona, experts say. Instead, it looks like the state is trending upward in a way that is concerning and could need another stay-at-home order to curb the spread. "I would go so far as to say alarming," said Dr. William Hanage, an epidemiology professor at Harvard University's T.H. Chan School of Public Health. "The only sort of crumb of comfort that I can find is that I think, in general, it's sort of easier to social distance in Arizona than it is in some places."
New Lockdown
12 states see rising Covid-19 hospitalizations as Arizona asks hospitals to activate emergency plans
Health experts have long warned about a second peak in Covid-19, and now a rise in cases has pushed Arizona to tell its hospitals to activate emergency plans. Arizona is one of the 19 states with the trend of new coronavirus cases still increasing. While 22 are trending downward, trends in nine states are holding steady. Nationally more than 1.9 million people have been infected by the virus and more than 112,000 have died, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. At its peak, Arizona's intensive care unit beds were 78% in use. As of Monday, 76% were occupied. Arizona's Director of Health Services Dr. Cara Christ asked that hospitals "be judicious" in elective surgeries to ensure bed capacity. "We know Covid-19 is still in our community, and we expect to see increased cases," the Arizona Department of Health Services tweeted Tuesday night.