COVID-19 Global Roundup: Over 1.5 million cases, US and UK see record number of deaths in a day, death toll of doctors reaches 100 in Italy
COVID-19 Global Roundup: Over 1.5 million cases, US and UK see record number of deaths in a day, death toll of doctors reaches 100 in Italy There are now over 1.53 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 across the world, and nearly 89,800 people have lost their lives to it. At the same time, over 340,000 people have recovered from the disease as well. Spain reported 683 deaths on Wednesday, which was slightly lower compared to previous days
There are now over 1.53 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 across the world, and nearly 89,800 people have lost their lives to it. At the same time, over 340,000 people have recovered from the disease as well.
Spain reported 683 deaths on Wednesday, which was slightly lower compared to previous days. The trend there is slightly encouraging with new cases appearing to plateau and gradually decrease. Deaths in the country have now gone past 15,000. Spain and Italy, both may be looking to extend the lockdown. The death toll for doctors in Italy reached 100 on Thursday as 4 more deaths were reported in the previous 24 hours.
The US and UK, on the other hand, reported the highest daily death toll in the previous 24 hours with close to 2,000 and 938 deaths respectively. As per a study of data collected via a COVID-19 app, the lockdown in Britain seem to be having the desired effect of slowing down the spread of the infection. Russia saw a jump of close to 1,500 cases taking their total confirmed cases to over 10,000.
The UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, is reportedly doing better after spending his third night in intensive care. Officials reported that he sat up and spoke with doctors and remains stable.
In an effort to help workers as well as the economy, the Australian government passed A$130 billion Employment Rescue Package.
Bangladesh seals off Rohingya camps
Bangladesh said it would close off Cox’s Bazaar, where over 3.3 million people (including over 1 million Rohingyas) reside, after an infection was located close to the area. No one will be allowed in or out of the area as it will be completely sealed off. While no cases have been reported within the area so far, health workers world over have raised alarms about an impending humanitarian disaster - there is not a single ventilator in the area.
Bangladesh has so far reported over 200 cases, including 20 deaths - the majority in the last week.
WHO urges countries to not politicize the pandemic
Following President Trump’s attack on the WHO, the director-general Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus responded by requesting the global community to not politicize the novel coronavirus as this would lead to ‘many more body bags’.
He acknowledged that there are many unknowns with COVID-19 and that the organization will quickly learn from its mistakes. The UN chief, Antonio Guterres, defended WHO and said their support was invaluable to the campaign against the virus.
Second vaccine enters human trials, more hope in the pipeline
The pharmaceutical company, Inovio commenced Phase I human trials on Monday after preclinical studies showed promising signs. Using DNA vaccine technology, the firm will test the vaccine on a cohort of 40 healthy adults to test immune responses and safety. It was previously involved in the manufacture of a vaccine for MERS, and phase I trials were favourable back then.
Along similar lines, the pharmaceutical company Novavax also said it hoped to start human trials mid-May in Australia. Donald Trump told reporters on Wednesday that 10 drugs were currently undergoing clinical trials in the US.
Researchers in Canada will begin blood plasma trials to test the efficacy of passive antibody therapy to treat COVID-19. This will be the biggest study to date with over 1,000 participants. Given the time required for vaccine development, this is a welcome study.
For more information, read our article on COVID-19 Myths and the Truth About Them.
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