This article is from the source 'guardian' and was first published or seen on . The next check for changes will be

You can find the current article at its original source at https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2021/oct/14/coronavirus-live-who-experts-to-revive-virus-origins-inquiry-fiji-prepares-to-welcome-tourists-after-two-years

The article has changed 31 times. There is an RSS feed of changes available.

Version 25 Version 26
Covid live: UK reports 45,066 new cases, highest since mid-July; Russia daily cases pass 30,000 for first time Covid live: UK reports 45,066 new cases, highest since mid-July; Russia daily cases pass 30,000 for first time
(about 1 hour later)
Highest daily cases in UK since mid-July with a further 157 Covid-linked deaths; Russia registers 31,299 new cases in one dayHighest daily cases in UK since mid-July with a further 157 Covid-linked deaths; Russia registers 31,299 new cases in one day
The US government has donated 3.6m doses of the Pfizer Inc/BioNTech SE Covid-19 vaccine to Nigeria, a local television station said.
It said that the shipment arrived in the country’s capital Abuja, Reuters reports.
Nigeria has received 501,600 doses of AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine from the French government through the COVAX vaccine-sharing facility, a senior health official said.
Faisal Shuaib, head of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency, said the country also received 434,400 doses of Johnson and Johnson vaccine from the African Union, Reuters reports.
Both supplies were received last week, Shuaib said, adding that more were expected through the COVAX facility and the African Union.
The COVAX facility, backed by the World Health Organization and the GAVI vaccine alliance, aims to secure billions of doses for lower-income countries by the end of 2021.
Here is more on US health advisers voting in favour of some Americans who received Moderna’s Covid vaccine getting a half-dose booster to bolster protection against the virus.
Advisers to the US Food and Drug Administration have voted in favour of a third dose of Moderna Inc’s Covid-19 vaccine for people aged 65 and over along with those at high risk of severe illness, Reuters reports.Advisers to the US Food and Drug Administration have voted in favour of a third dose of Moderna Inc’s Covid-19 vaccine for people aged 65 and over along with those at high risk of severe illness, Reuters reports.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will now make specific recommendations on who should get the jabs. CDC advisers are scheduled to meet next week.The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will now make specific recommendations on who should get the jabs. CDC advisers are scheduled to meet next week.
Joe Biden told visiting Kenya president Uhuru Kenyatta that the US will make a one-time donation of more than 17m doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine to the African Union (AU), Reuters reports.Joe Biden told visiting Kenya president Uhuru Kenyatta that the US will make a one-time donation of more than 17m doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine to the African Union (AU), Reuters reports.
“We are hopeful this donation will help AU countries build vaccination programs and get shots into arms,” the White House said in a statement.“We are hopeful this donation will help AU countries build vaccination programs and get shots into arms,” the White House said in a statement.
A panel of outside advisers to the US health regulator will meet next month to discuss whether to authorize Merck & Co’s experimental Covid-19 antiviral drug, the agency said.A panel of outside advisers to the US health regulator will meet next month to discuss whether to authorize Merck & Co’s experimental Covid-19 antiviral drug, the agency said.
The US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) panel will meet on 30 November to discuss the safety and effectiveness of the drug, molnupiravir, for the treatment of mild-to-moderate Covid-19 in adults who have tested positive and are at high risk for progression to severe illness.The US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) panel will meet on 30 November to discuss the safety and effectiveness of the drug, molnupiravir, for the treatment of mild-to-moderate Covid-19 in adults who have tested positive and are at high risk for progression to severe illness.
The FDA typically follows the advice of its experts but is not bound to do so, Reuters reports.The FDA typically follows the advice of its experts but is not bound to do so, Reuters reports.
Verizon Communications said about 30,000 non-union U.S. employees must show proof of vaccination against Covid-19 by December 8th under US president Joe Biden’s federal contractor executive order.Verizon Communications said about 30,000 non-union U.S. employees must show proof of vaccination against Covid-19 by December 8th under US president Joe Biden’s federal contractor executive order.
Verizon, a federal contractor, said it is in discussions with its unions about vaccination requirements, Reuters reports.Verizon, a federal contractor, said it is in discussions with its unions about vaccination requirements, Reuters reports.
Verizon said retail employees and some other employees must be vaccinated by February 1st.Verizon said retail employees and some other employees must be vaccinated by February 1st.
For contractors, vendors, visitors and new hires who enter Verizon U.S. facilities must be fully vaccinated by January 1st.For contractors, vendors, visitors and new hires who enter Verizon U.S. facilities must be fully vaccinated by January 1st.
GPs have reacted with fury to the UK government plans to name and shame them over access to care, as the health secretary Sajid Javid failed to address the profession at its annual conference.GPs have reacted with fury to the UK government plans to name and shame them over access to care, as the health secretary Sajid Javid failed to address the profession at its annual conference.
The head of the Royal College of GPs (RCGP) said medics had recently come under attack from some politicians and sections of the media, which he branded “abuse”, adding it was “ demoralising and indefensible”.The head of the Royal College of GPs (RCGP) said medics had recently come under attack from some politicians and sections of the media, which he branded “abuse”, adding it was “ demoralising and indefensible”.
Professor Martin Marshall, head of the RCGP, told delegates that GPs had worked tirelessly to support patients through the pandemic, and are now helping all those with conditions such as long Covid as well as patients on long NHS waiting lists.Professor Martin Marshall, head of the RCGP, told delegates that GPs had worked tirelessly to support patients through the pandemic, and are now helping all those with conditions such as long Covid as well as patients on long NHS waiting lists.
He said GPs have found themselves at the centre of a “public storm over face-to-face appointments”, PA reports.He said GPs have found themselves at the centre of a “public storm over face-to-face appointments”, PA reports.
People who are taking statins may be less likely to die from coronavirus than similar people not on the medication, research suggests.People who are taking statins may be less likely to die from coronavirus than similar people not on the medication, research suggests.
Statins are prescribed for lowering cholesterol in the blood, and are a recommended and common intervention.Statins are prescribed for lowering cholesterol in the blood, and are a recommended and common intervention.
The study by the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden found that statin treatment was associated with a slightly lower risk of dying from Covid-19, a correlation that did not vary significantly among risk groups.The study by the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden found that statin treatment was associated with a slightly lower risk of dying from Covid-19, a correlation that did not vary significantly among risk groups.
Here is a round-up of all the day’s main Covid news stories:Here is a round-up of all the day’s main Covid news stories:
In the UK, the government confirmed today that there had been a further 45,066 lab-confirmed Covid cases. It is the highest daily figure since mid-July. The official data also confirmed a further 157 people had died within 28 days of testing positive for Covid as of Thursday, bringing the UK total to 138,237.In the UK, the government confirmed today that there had been a further 45,066 lab-confirmed Covid cases. It is the highest daily figure since mid-July. The official data also confirmed a further 157 people had died within 28 days of testing positive for Covid as of Thursday, bringing the UK total to 138,237.
The European Union’s medicines regulator has announced that it has started a “real-time review” of AstraZeneca’s antibody-based Covid therapy.The European Union’s medicines regulator has announced that it has started a “real-time review” of AstraZeneca’s antibody-based Covid therapy.
Italy recorded 40 coronavirus-related deaths on Thursday, up from 37 the previous day, the country’s health ministry said.Italy recorded 40 coronavirus-related deaths on Thursday, up from 37 the previous day, the country’s health ministry said.
Areas of Syria outside Bashar al-Assad’s control are facing their most deadly wave of Covid yet, pushing already depleted healthcare systems to the limit.Areas of Syria outside Bashar al-Assad’s control are facing their most deadly wave of Covid yet, pushing already depleted healthcare systems to the limit.
In the US, health advisers are debating if millions of Americans who received Moderna vaccinations should get a booster shot – this time using half the original dose.In the US, health advisers are debating if millions of Americans who received Moderna vaccinations should get a booster shot – this time using half the original dose.
China’s foreign ministry has warned against what it calls possible “political manipulation” of a renewed probe by the World Health Organization (WHO) into the origins of the coronavirus.China’s foreign ministry has warned against what it calls possible “political manipulation” of a renewed probe by the World Health Organization (WHO) into the origins of the coronavirus.
In Australia, teachers are warning that schools in New South Wales and Victoria are not yet ready to go back, raising concerns over poor ventilation, a lack of air filters, and no guidance on how to safely manage class sizes.In Australia, teachers are warning that schools in New South Wales and Victoria are not yet ready to go back, raising concerns over poor ventilation, a lack of air filters, and no guidance on how to safely manage class sizes.
Hungary reported 1,141 new infections, with the number rising above 1,000 for the first time during the fourth wave of the pandemic.Hungary reported 1,141 new infections, with the number rising above 1,000 for the first time during the fourth wave of the pandemic.
Only one in seven Covid cases in Africa are being detected, meaning the continent’s estimated infection level may be 59 million people, according to a new study by the World Health Organization.Only one in seven Covid cases in Africa are being detected, meaning the continent’s estimated infection level may be 59 million people, according to a new study by the World Health Organization.
Russia has called on pension-age doctors who quit during the pandemic for safety reasons to return to their jobs. It came on Thursday as the authorities reported a record one-day tally of coronavirus cases, as well as a record number of deaths.Russia has called on pension-age doctors who quit during the pandemic for safety reasons to return to their jobs. It came on Thursday as the authorities reported a record one-day tally of coronavirus cases, as well as a record number of deaths.
In the US, Bloomberg News is reporting that the country’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will send drugmaker Merck & Co’s Covid antiviral drug, molnupiravir, to a panel of its outside advisers for review.In the US, Bloomberg News is reporting that the country’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will send drugmaker Merck & Co’s Covid antiviral drug, molnupiravir, to a panel of its outside advisers for review.
The Latvian government has cancelled most planned hospital operations from Monday amid an increased need for beds and staff as Covid cases climb, the country’s health ministry said in a statement on Thursday.The Latvian government has cancelled most planned hospital operations from Monday amid an increased need for beds and staff as Covid cases climb, the country’s health ministry said in a statement on Thursday.
Indonesia’s holiday island of Bali reopened to foreign tourists after 18 months of pandemic hiatus today.Indonesia’s holiday island of Bali reopened to foreign tourists after 18 months of pandemic hiatus today.
Poland has confirmed it is set to donate a million AstraZeneca Covid shots to Iran.Poland has confirmed it is set to donate a million AstraZeneca Covid shots to Iran.
That’s it from me, Tom Ambrose, for today. My colleague Nadeem Badshah will be seeing you through the rest of this evening and I will be back tomorrow. Goodbye.That’s it from me, Tom Ambrose, for today. My colleague Nadeem Badshah will be seeing you through the rest of this evening and I will be back tomorrow. Goodbye.
In the US, the president, Joe Biden, has begun his Covid briefing and almost immediately promotes vaccine mandates.
“Now is not the time to let up, we have a lot more to do. We’re in a very critical period,” said Biden. He said daily case rates, hospitalizations and deaths are all down across the country.
“We have to do more to vaccinate the 66 million unvaccinated people in America,” said Biden. “The vaccine requirements we started rolling out in the summer are working, they’re working”.
“Vaccination requirements should not be another issue that divides us”.
My colleague Jessica Glenza is across all developments from that briefing, so follow it here if you want more from DC.
Lupus sufferers pleaded for more supplies of hydroxychloroquine two months before the federal government told billionaire Clive Palmer it didn’t want more of the 33m doses he wanted to donate as a potential Covid-19 treatment.
One tonne of Palmer’s hydroxychloroquine – equivalent to 5m doses – was destroyed after it was left unclaimed in Melbourne due to a lengthy standoff with the commonwealth, Guardian Australia revealed on Wednesday.
When Palmer first promised to donate 33m doses of hydroxychloroquine to Australia, there was some optimism – since disproven – that it could be used as a treatment for Covid-19.
The fervour around hydroxychloroquine’s potential value in treating coronavirus led to the hoarding of the drug and put significant pressure on supplies for other patient groups – sufferers of malaria, rheumatoid arthritis, and lupus, among others – who have a legitimate need for it.
The pressure on supplies was so significant that Lupus Australia wrote to the federal health minister, Greg Hunt, on 25 March last year, expressing concerns that patients were unable to fill their prescriptions, due to major shortages.
Hunt responded to the letter and outlined the steps taken by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) to ensure continued supply for those who needed hydroxychloroquine, including lupus sufferers.
Lupus Australia president, Barbara Ward, said hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine were critical drugs for lupus and rheumatoid arthritis sufferers, particularly where “a patient’s symptoms do not respond to other treatments”.
In the US, Bloomberg News is reporting that the country’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will send drugmaker Merck & Co’s Covid antiviral drug, molnupiravir, to a panel of its outside advisers for review.
Bloomberg cited a person familiar with the plans.
The advisory committee will weigh in on safety concerns, which have been raised by some experts, before the FDA makes a decision on authorisation of the drug, the report said.
Russia has called on pension-age doctors who quit during the pandemic for safety reasons to return to their jobs.
It came on Thursday as the authorities reported a record one-day tally of coronavirus cases, as well as a record number of deaths.
The Kremlin has blamed the rising toll on Russia’s slow vaccination campaign and has appealed to people to get the shot. Take-up has been slow, with many Russians citing distrust of the authorities and fear of new medical products, Reuters reported.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters:
Thursday’s case tally of 31,299 new cases marked the first time Russia has officially reported more than 30,000 cases in a single day since the pandemic began.
The government taskforce reported 986 coronavirus-related deaths in the last 24 hours, a record death toll for the third day in a row. Health minister Mikhail Murashko was quoted by the TASS news agency as saying:
In Australia, teachers are warning that schools in New South Wales (NSW) and Victoria are not yet ready to go back, raising concerns over poor ventilation, a lack of air filters, and no guidance on how to safely manage class sizes.
“We have situations where room capacity leaves eight to 10 students out in the cold, literally,” the senior vice-president of the NSW Teachers Federation, Amber Flohm, said.
Teachers had asked the government to audit classroom sizes three months ago but had been ignored, she said.
In NSW, teachers say the government’s policy to have schools open their windows for natural ventilation means some students have already been forced to learn in freezing conditions.
One teacher in the Blue Mountains said students currently in face-to-face learning were bringing in blankets.
“It’s currently 13C here and raining,” she said on Wednesday. “We have been told that we can put the heater on, but the warmth is just blowing outside.
“Summer will be interesting too. We often have days well over 40 and have been told we can’t use the air-con as it recirculates the air in the room,” she said.
Many of the teachers Guardian Australia spoke to for this story are not allowed to speak to the media, so their identities have been kept anonymous.
Italy recorded 40 coronavirus-related deaths on Thursday, up from 37 the previous day, the country’s health ministry said.
It comes as the daily tally of new infections fell to 2,668 from 2,772 .
Italy has registered 131,461 deaths linked to Covid since the outbreak in February last year. It has the second highest toll in Europe behind Britain and the ninth highest in the world. The country has reported 4.71 million cases to date.
Patients in hospital with Covid – not including those in intensive care – stood at 2,479 on Thursday, down from 2,552 a day earlier.
There were 22 new admissions to intensive care units, increasing from 19 on Wednesday. The total number of patients in intensive care with Covid fell to 359 from a previous 367.
The Latvian government has cancelled most planned hospital operations from Monday amid an increased need for beds and staff as Covid cases climb, the health ministry said in a statement on Thursday.
“Epidemiological predictions suggest that hospital use of Covid-19 patients will continue to increase rapidly”, the statement said.
Hospitals will continue to provide only urgent and life-saving operations, such as chemotherapy or invasive cardiac procedures, the news portal Delfi reported.
Latvia confirmed 2,408 new novel coronavirus cases on Thursday, a record surge, and 21 deaths, BNS news wire reported.
Only 52% of Latvian adults have been fully vaccinated thus far, well below European Union average of 75%, EU health figures show.
Italy is bracing itself for further unrest and labour market mayhem as the strictest vaccine mandate in Europe takes effect on Friday.
All workers will be obliged to present a coronavirus health pass before entering their workplaces, a move that is expected to leave some industries struggling with staff shortages.
The measure, an expansion of the “green pass” introduced in August, will require public and private sector workers to have been double vaccinated, to show proof of a negative test taken within the previous 48 hours or of having recently recovered from Covid-19.
Those who flout the rules face being suspended without pay or fined up to €1,500 (£1,270). Employers face fines for failing to check if staff are complying.
More than 80% of the population over the age of 12 has been double-vaccinated and the majority of Italians have taken the green pass – also required for dining inside restaurants, entering museums, theatres and cinemas, and for use on planes and long-distance trains – in their stride.
However, protests over the workplace rule have gathered pace in recent weeks, with a demonstration in Rome last weekend turning violent as neofascist groups exploited the discontent. The motive behind Italy’s green pass is to boost inoculations and contain infections in the hope of avoiding another lockdown.
In the UK, the government confirmed today that there had been a further 45,066 lab-confirmed Covid cases.
It is the highest daily figure since mid-July.
The official data also confirmed a further 157 people had died within 28 days of testing positive for Covid as of Thursday, bringing the UK total to 138,237.
Separate figures published by the Office for National Statistics show there have been 163,000 deaths registered in the UK where Covid was mentioned on the death certificate.
In the US, health advisers are debating if millions of Americans who received Moderna vaccinations should get a booster shot – this time using half the original dose.
Already millions who got their initial Pfizer shots at least six months ago are getting a booster of that brand.
On Thursday, advisers to the Food and Drug Administration evaluated the evidence that Moderna boosters should be offered too.
US officials stressed that the priority is to get shots to the 66 million unvaccinated Americans who are eligible for immunisation – those most at risk as the extra-contagious delta variant of the coronavirus has burned across the country.
“It’s important to remember that the vaccines still provide strong protection against serious outcomes” such as hospitalization and death from Covid, said FDA vaccine chief Dr Peter Marks.