Coronavirus World Update, May 18: Cases in Italy decline, EU to authorize Remdesivir, WHA’s meeting starts today
The number of confirmed COVID-19 patients in the world has crossed 4.8 million. Out of this, 1.86 million have recovered and over 316,959 people have died.
The number of confirmed COVID-19 patients in the world has crossed 4.8 million. Out of this, 1.86 million have recovered and over 316,959 people have passed away.
A two-day meeting of the World Health Assembly (WHA), the decision-making body of the WHO, started today. On Tuesday, a draft resolution will reportedly be pushed in front of the assembly calling for an independent investigation into the origin of COVID-19 . The draft is currently backed by about 116 member nations out of 194. It needs backing from at least 2/3rd of the members (129) to pass.
Meanwhile, after being authorised for emergency use by the US FDA, Gilead’s remdesivir may reportedly get conditional authorisation by the EU’s European Medicines Agency in the coming days.
Cases decline further in Italy, Spain saw less than 100 new deaths, Italy opens unlimited travel within regions
On Sunday, Spain saw less than 100 deaths due to the coronavirus disease in a day. This is the lowest daily death toll in the country in two months. Spain has already started easing restrictions in some areas while the worst-hit areas, Barcelona and Madrid, are still under strict restrictions.
On May 17, Italy reported a total of 145 deaths and 675 new cases. This is the lowest the death toll has been since March 9 and the new cases are as low as that on March 4. The total number of cases in the country is now at 225,435, out of which 31,908 people have succumbed to the disease.
On Monday, unlimited travel was allowed within the regions in Italy and all restaurants, cafes and religious places were reportedly opened after a 2-month-long lockdown with social distancing guidelines in place. The entire country had gone into lockdown on March 10.
UK notes low per day deaths, UK PM in talks with France to relax travel restrictions
Yesterday, the UK registered 170 new deaths by COVID-19 , reportedly the lowest per day increase in death toll since March. However, as per media reports, this is possibly due to the fact the UK’s death toll has been lower over the weekends as compared to weekdays. England’s health officials reportedly said on Saturday that their coronavirus notification system had not worked for a while, which may be responsible for the low death toll and this may show in the per day deaths on Monday.
Meanwhile, Britain and France are still in talks on whether visitors coming from France will have to undergo a mandatory 14-day quarantine after entering the UK. As per media reports, Britain has not yet finalised some details regarding this. It was earlier being said that Britain will not impose the quarantine.
Russia saw less than 10,000 cases
Russia has reported less than 10,000 cases for three days in a row now. With more than 290,000 affected, the country currently has the second-highest number of total cases in the world after the USA. For much of May, Russia has reported over 10,000 new cases per day at least.
On Monday, the country saw 8,926 new cases and 91 new deaths.
For more information, read our article on All you wanted to know about remdesivir.
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However, as this is a very small size, experts say it cannot be considered as an indication of spread of the mutated virus.
Not following COVID-19 norms, highly infectious strains could be behind surge in cases, says AIIMS chief
Dr Randeep Guleria warned that if the situation is not reversed, then the galloping infection rate will eventually cause a huge strain on the country's healthcare system
The Centre on Tuesday said doctors should ensure 'rational and judicious' use of remdesivir, underlining it is to be given only to serious COVID-19 patients in hospitals