"COVID-19 Lockdown Exit Analysis" 25th Oct 2021
- Locking down the unvaccinated in Austria? Austrian chancellor says the unvaccinated could be forced to lockdown in their homes if COVID-19 cases worsen
- How new companies wielding mRNA tech vaccination solutions 'won the pandemic' Moderna and BioNTech: The Unlikely Outsiders Who Won the Race for a Covid-19 Vaccine
- Workplace access limited to the unvaccinated in Singapore Singapore to Limit Workplace Access for Unvaccinated People
- Concern over the impact of Sputnik-V on people suffering from HIV lead to Russian Covid vaccine ban - Namibia to suspend use of Russian COVID-19 vaccine - ministry
- New Delta Variant 'descendent' - should we be more concerned? - Delta variant ‘descendant’ hits Israel – is it time to panic?
- German Covid-19 infections at highest since mid-May - Even though vaccinations mean the country will cope masks and restrictions stay till next spring to ensure the country beats the virus
- New variant? No masks? Here's what's driving the U.K.'s Covid surge - Infections rising sharply in UK and no measures of protection other than the vaccine.
- Tunisia imposes COVID-19 vaccine pass on Tunisians and all foreign visitors - Tunisia is imposing COVID-19 vaccine passes on Tunisians and all foreign visitors, a presidential decree showed on Friday.
- Covid adviser fears 'another lockdown Christmas' as he blasts inaction as 'unacceptable' - Nervtag adviser Professor Peter Oppenshaw blasts UK government inaction
- China warns of further spread in latest COVID-19 flare-up - Chinese authorities urged all regions to step up monitoring and called for a reduction in travel across provinces
Endemic Covid-19 Has Arrived in Portugal. This Is What It Looks Like.
Close to 100% of people over the age of 50 have received at least one vaccine dose, according to the Portuguese government. For those between the ages of 25 and 49 it is 95% and from 12 to 17 it is 88%. Some 89% of Portugal’s entire population of 10 million has had at least one vaccine dose, not far behind the rate in the world-leading United Arab Emirates, compared with 65% in the U.S. and 73% in the U.K., according to Oxford University’s Our World in Data. Portugal has been averaging six deaths a day for the past month, compared with almost 300 at the peak in January. Adjusted for population, the current rate equates to about 200 in the U.S. The deaths plunged to one or two a day in May and June before rising to 20 in July. The number of new daily recorded infections and hospitalizations has been trending down since the summer. The country is now averaging about 750 new cases a day, compared with almost 13,000 in January. There are about 320 people hospitalized, down from almost 6,700 at the peak
Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 Vaccine for Young Kids Satisfied FDA Criteria, Agency Says
The Food and Drug Administration said the Covid-19 vaccine from Pfizer Inc. PFE 0.70% and BioNTech met the agency’s criteria for immune responses in a study in children ages 5 to 11 years. In a report released Friday, the agency flagged the risk of heart-inflammation conditions including myocarditis associated with the vaccine but said the overall benefits, in preventing Covid-19 disease and hospitalizations, would outweigh the risk of the heart conditions. The FDA assessment could support the agency’s authorization of the vaccine in children in the coming days or weeks, but the myocarditis risk is likely to be a topic of debate among advisers to the FDA who are scheduled to first review the application.
The Unlikely Outsiders Who Won the Race for a Covid-19 Vaccine
Uğur Şahin and Stéphane Bancel were long underestimated by investors and scientists. But when Covid-19 threatened the globe, these two unknowns had a solution.
Austria Threatens New Lockdown for Unvaccinated as Cases Spike
Austria has laid out a framework for potential new lockdown measures to apply only to unvaccinated people, as Covid-19 inoculations lag and cases rise sharply. “I will do everything I can to ensure that the health system in this country does not reach its limit and is not overloaded because we have too many procrastinators,” Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg said in a statement Saturday. If the number of Covid patients in intensive care units hits 500, or 25% of the country’s capacity, unvaccinated people would be barred from hotels and restaurants. If ICU capacity reaches one-third, or 600 units, a lockdown would go into effect for the unvaccinated, who would only be allowed to leave their homes for certain reasons.
Adobe Sets Dec. 8 Vaccination Deadline for US Workers
Adobe Inc. warned its U.S. workers that they must be vaccinated against Covid-19 by Dec. 8. U.S. companies are giving notice to employees as they seek to comply with orders from President Joe Biden requiring federal contractors to have all staff vaccinated by the December deadline. The government is also drawing up rules for businesses with 100 or more employees to require vaccines or test unvaccinated staff at least once a week. The White House is set to issue additional guidelines in the near future. Adobe, the maker of Photoshop and Illustrator, said in a statement Friday that 94% of its U.S. workforce is “or will soon be fully vaccinated.” The San Jose, California-based company said it will consider accommodation requests for employees who aren’t vaccinated for religious or medical reasons.
Britain must control Covid now – or face a winter lockdown
It’s not surprising, then, that Germany is managing to control its Covid epidemic and bring down the numbers of cases and deaths. England (and the UK) by contrast is seeing a sharp rise in cases. Deaths are now on the increase too: this week’s daily reported toll was the highest since March. While the UK government continues to ask people to be vigilant and keep calm and carry on, the clock is ticking. Time is running out to put in some basic measures to prevent a further spike in cases, the NHS becoming overwhelmed, and very possibly another lockdown. Germany, meanwhile, is keeping its economy and society running, and looks in a strong position heading into the bumpy winter months.
Their Jobs Made Them Get Vaccinated. They Refused.
Under the threat of losing their jobs, hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers finally got a Covid-19 vaccine. Teachers, nurses and home health aides accepted their occupations’ mandates. The mass resignations some experts had predicted did not occur, as most workers hurriedly got inoculated. Josephine Valdez, 30, a public school paraprofessional from the Bronx, did not. Failing to meet the New York City Education Department’s vaccination deadline, Ms. Valdez lost her job this month. She is among the 4 percent of the city’s roughly 150,000 public school employees who did not comply with the order.
Gottlieb says kids could start getting COVID-19 vaccine as soon November 4-5
Former FDA commissioner Dr. Scott Gottlieb predicted Sunday on "Face the Nation" that the Biden administration could begin rolling out COVID-19 vaccines for children as soon as November 4, right after panel of Centers for Disease Control panel will decide whether to grant emergency use authorization for the COVID-19 vaccine for children ages 5-11. Gottlieb said the Biden administration is making the effort to push the vaccine directly into pediatricians' offices. Pfizer, which Gottlieb is on the board, is developing a small tray that carries 10 vials at a time and a storage container that is small enough for small-to-medium sized pediatrician's office to stock the vaccine and deliver it.
Vaccine passport: Provinces issuing proof for travel
In Canada, instead of issuing a singular federal national COVID-19 vaccine passport, the federal government says that each province and territory will be responsible for issuing a “standardized pan-Canadian” vaccine passport that Canadians can use when travelling. The proposed system means that, as is currently the case, provincial vaccine credentials will continue to be the main way that Canadians will have to show their vaccination status. Each province's system is supposed to have a “common” look and feel, with the expectation that by next month all Canadians will have access to their vaccine credentials from their province or territory, as proof of vaccination will soon be needed in order to board a plane or train in this country.
Calls for home COVID vaccinations drive for highly vulnerable before Australia opens up
In Australia, people unable to leave home for health reasons urgently need a simple way to book COVID vaccinations amid concerns vulnerable people are falling through the cracks, experts say. Disability Advocacy Network Australia chief executive Mary Mallett said, for people who could not leave home to get a shot, vaccines were "all the more essential" because their conditions often put them at higher risk. In September, People With Disability Australia and another 60 organisations penned an open letter demanding people with disabilities be prioritised for home vaccines.
Singapore Covid Work News: Fully Vaccinated From 2022
Singapore is set to restrict access to the workplace for those who are unvaccinated from January unless they test negative daily as part of plans to resume normal activities in the pandemic. Singapore joins Italy in introducing tough Covid rules for workers by mandating vaccinations for those planning to enter workplaces, while most countries either leave such decisions to companies, or require only selected groups such as healthcare workers and civil servants to be inoculated.
Canada scraps COVID-19 travel advisory; Ontario to end mask, vaccine rules by March
Canada has scrapped an official advisory urging its citizens to shun non-essential foreign travel, given its successful campaign to inoculate people against COVID-19, the country's top medical officer said on Friday. Hours later, Canada's most populous province, Ontario, issued a timeline to lift all remaining COVID-19 restrictions, with the aim of removing all proof of vaccination and mask requirements by March 2022. Canada's travel warning was issued in March 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic erupted.
Tunisia imposes COVID-19 vaccine pass on Tunisians and all foreign visitors
Tunisia is imposing COVID-19 vaccine passes on Tunisians and all foreign visitors, a presidential decree showed on Friday. Officials, employees and users are required to show a card proving inoculation against the coronavirus to access public and private administrations, according to the decree. The pass will also be required to enter cafes, restaurants, hotels and tourist establishments, it said. The decree showed that the jobs of employees who did not receive vaccination in the public and private sectors will be suspended until the vaccine pass is presented.
Humza Yousaf refuses to rule out further restrictions amid fears of Covid-19 spike following COP26
In Scotland, Humza Yousaf has admitted there is a risk of a spike in Covid-19 infections following the COP26 summit, and declined to rule out further restrictions amid growing fears of a winter surge in cases. The health secretary also said he “completely rejected” accusations the Scottish Government’s booster programme was “sluggish,” despite the fact more than 400,000 people eligible for the jag have yet to receive it.
Singapore to Limit Workplace Access for Unvaccinated People
Singapore is set to restrict access to the workplace for those who are unvaccinated from January unless they test negative daily as part of plans to resume normal activities in the pandemic.
Covid adviser fears 'another lockdown Christmas' as he blasts inaction as 'unacceptable'
One of the government's scientific advisers has said he fears 'another lockdown Christmas' following an 'unacceptable' lack of action amid rising coronavirus case numbers. Professor Peter Openshaw, a member of the New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (Nervtag), said he was "very fearful" that strict measures would need to be introduced. He fears it would be the second festive season in a row under lockdown conditions if the government does not act urgently to bring down Covid-19 infection rates. Ministers have so far refused to implement so-called 'Plan B' measures, which may include a return to mandatory face coverings in some settings and home working, and the introduction of Covid vaccine passports for venues such as nightclubs.
‘Darker skies and colder weather provide perfect conditions... for Covid-19 to thrive’
Joe Buglass tried 46 times to call his GP about booking a Covid booster jab last Wednesday. “The phone was just ringing and ringing,” he said. He had tried several times over the previous six weeks, since getting an NHS text message. “You click the link and it gives you the doctors’ surgery number,” he said. Buglass, who runs a property maintenance business in Newcastle, is clinically vulnerable because he donated a kidney. When he finally got through, he was told he was ringing the wrong people. Eventually, someone rang him back. “They told me that because the clinics were finishing this Sunday, they didn’t have any bookings for the next few weeks,” Buglass said. He was incredulous. “Where do I go from here?
Delta variant ‘descendant’ hits Israel – is it time to panic?
A new and potentially more transmittable version of the Delta variant has entered Israel just as the COVID infection rate has started to decline and the country prepares for flu season. Is the variant known as AY4.2 a reason to sound the alarms? According to the Health Ministry, a single case of AY4.2 was identified in Israel in an 11-year-old boy who recently returned from a trip to Moldova. The boy tested positive for coronavirus while in isolation, the ministry said, and so far, it does not appear that others were infected. However, with AY4.2 being as much as 10% to 15% more transmissible than its Delta grandparent, it is not unlikely that more cases are already in Israel and have just not yet been discovered, said Prof. Cyrille Cohen, head of the immunology lab at Bar-Ilan University.
South African Paediatric Association welcomes Covid-19 vaccines opening to young teens
To vaccinate or not? That is the question that parents of children from the age of 12 upwards are asking, now that the youngsters are eligible for Covid-19 jabs. Dr Joe Phaahla, the minister of health announced on Friday that children aged between 12 and 17, will be able to get the one dose of the Pfizer vaccine from Wednesday. He said the decision was taken following recommendations from the Ministerial Advisory Committee (MAC). “We believe that this will come in handy as the schools start their examinations, and for some that have already advanced towards concluding the academic year and studying to prepare for the next academic year,” he said. Those over the age of 18 get two shots of the Pfizer vaccine but the youngsters get a single jab as per recommendations from the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA).
Pfizer jab 90% effective in kids
The Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine is more than 90 percent effective in preventing symptomatic disease among childen agred 5-to-11, the company said in a document released Friday, that put forward its case for authorisation. The new data was published on the website of the Food and Drug Administration, which has called an advisory panel of independent experts to meet Tuesday to vote on whether to green light the shot.
Vaccines alone will not end pandemic, warns WHO
The World Health Organization has warned that the vaccine alone will not be able to lift the world out of the pandemic. WHO Spokesperson Margaret Harris told Times Radio that the problem is focusing on one thing and that the vaccine isn't going to get us out of this. "We really have to do other measures," she said. Ms Harris said people "have got to be serious about not crowding". "We have still got to be looking at wearing the masks, when you're indoors particularly," she said. She added that the rest of the world must be vaccinated to stop new Covid variants from developing.
Here's Why Developing Countries Can Make mRNA Covid Vaccines
Across the developing world, hundreds of millions of people are unable to get a vaccine to protect themselves from the ravages of Covid-19, and millions of them have already become infected and died. Depending on wealthy nations to donate billions of doses is not working, public health experts say. The solution, many now believe, is for the countries to do something that the big American mRNA vaccine makers say is not feasible: Manufacture the gold-standard mRNA shots themselves.
Why Some Healthcare Workers Would Rather Lose Their Jobs Than Get Vaccinated
The fact that these holdouts are healthcare workers makes them one of the most confounding challenges for the vaccination drive. Around one-third of the eligible population in the U.S. remains unvaccinated against Covid-19. Some of the vaccine holdouts, health officials believe, will ultimately be persuaded to get the shot—the so-called movable middle. Others might never be persuaded. Their resistance and potential influence threaten public-health efforts to defeat the virus, say epidemiologists and other health experts.
FDA says benefits outweigh risks for Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in children
Scientists at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said on Friday that the likely benefits of giving the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to 5 to 11 year olds clearly outweigh the risks of rare cases of heart inflammation. Earlier on Friday, the vaccine makers said their shot showed 90.7% efficacy against the coronavirus in a clinical trial of children 5 to 11 years old.
Sinovac added to S'pore national vaccination programme: 5 questions about the vaccine answered
The Sinovac Covid-19 vaccine will be included in the national vaccination programme to cater to individuals aged 18 years and above who are unable or unwilling to take the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna mRNA vaccines. The Ministry of Health said that three doses of the Sinovac vaccine will be required for a person to be considered fully vaccinated. The second dose should be taken 28 days after the first dose, while the third dose should be taken 90 days after the second dose.
Namibia to suspend use of Russian COVID-19 vaccine - ministry
Namibia will suspend its rollout of Russia's Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine, its health ministry said on Saturday, days after the drugs regulator in neighbouring South Africa flagged concerns about its safety for people at risk of HIV. The Gamaleya Research Institute, which developed Sputnik V, said Namibia's decision was not based on any scientific evidence or research. South African regulator SAHPRA decided not to approve an emergency use application for Sputnik V for now because, it said, some studies suggested that administration of vaccines using the Adenovirus Type 5 vector - which Sputnik V does - was associated with higher susceptibility to HIV in men.
China warns of further spread in latest COVID-19 flare-up
China's latest COVID-19 outbreak is increasingly likely to spread further, a health official said on Sunday, as authorities urged all regions to step up monitoring and called for a reduction in travel across provinces. China has largely contained the virus but it is determined to stamp out any sporadic local outbreaks, particularly in the run-up to the 2022 Winter Olympics in February. More than 100 locally transmitted cases have been confirmed over the last week across 11 provincial areas, with most linked to 13 different tour groups.
Covid-19: Five more deaths and 1,061 new coronavirus cases
Five Covid-19-related deaths have been reported in Northern Ireland on Sunday. Deaths are measured by recording those who died within 28 days of receiving a positive result in a test for coronavirus. The total number of deaths linked to Covid-19 in Northern Ireland since the start of the pandemic is 2,661. Another 1,061 cases of coronavirus were reported in Northern Ireland on Sunday, down from 1,323 on Saturday. That includes cases confirmed from samples taken in recent days, not necessarily just in the latest 24-hour reporting period.
Singapore PM Lee rules out indefinite Covid-19 lockdown
Singapore cannot go into an indefinite lockdown and stand still, but also cannot “simply let go and let things rip”, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has said. "We have to travel this road to get to living safely with Covid-19. We want to get there with as few casualties as possible,” Lee said in a Facebook post on Saturday. Singapore’s multi-ministry task force announced on Saturday a slew of measures for the effective opening up of the affluent city-state. These include requiring vaccination for all staff returning to the workplace from Jan 1, 2022, as well as adding China's Sinovac to the national vaccination programme and expanding the home recovery scheme to certain pregnant women, The Straits Times newspaper reported. The task force is co-chaired by Trade and Industry Minister Gan Kim Yong, Finance Minister Lawrence Wong and Health Minister Ong Ye Kung.
New Zealand's coronavirus outbreak spreads to South Island
New Zealand reported 104 new coronavirus infections on Saturday, including the first community case of the virus in the country's South Island in nearly a year, health officials said. Most of the new infections were reported in Auckland, New Zealand's largest city that has been under a strict lockdown for more than two months. Looser restrictions are in place in most of the rest of the country of 5 million. The risks of a further spread from the case reported in Blenheim, in the north east of the South Island, remained low, health officials said, with the person likely in the late stage of infection.
Britain reports highest weekly COVID-19 cases since July
Britain recorded the highest number of new cases of COVID-19 since July over the past week, government figures showed on Saturday, a day after Prime Minister Boris Johnson played down the prospect of a return to lockdown. Some 333,465 people in Britain tested positive for COVID-19 over the past seven days, up 15% on the previous week and the highest total since the seven days to July 21. Daily figures showed there were 44,985 new cases on Saturday, down from 49,298 on Friday. Daily death figures were only available for England, and showed 135 fatalities within 28 days of a positive test.
COVID-19: Nigeria records five deaths, 176 new cases Friday
Nigeria has recorded five additional fatalities from the coronavirus pandemic with 176 fresh cases reported across 11 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT). This was contained in an update shared on the Facebook page of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) late Friday night. The data indicates that Nigeria’s total infection from the pandemic currently stands at 210,136 while the fatality toll stands at 2,855.
Egypt records new 883 COVID-19 cases, 46 deaths - EgyptToday
Egypt recorded Thursday 883 COVID-19 infections, and 46 deaths as well as 819 recoveries at isolation hospitals. As such, the total figures became 321,967 infections, 18,151 deaths, and 271,792 recoveries. Egypt’s Health Ministry said citizens will receive a booster anti-COVID-19 vaccine jab a year or more after receiving the original two doses. President's Consultant for Health Affairs Awad Tag el-Din stated in a phone-in Wednesday that 21 million citizens got 32 million doses of the anti-COVID-19 vaccine as a portion of them have not received the second dose yet.
Covid 19 Delta outbreak: Whole raft of new locations of interest - including in Blenheim after South Island's first Delta case
Ministry of Health officials have tonight released a raft of new locations of interest after the South Island received its first case of the Delta Covid-19 variant. They include flights, shops, and service stations across Auckland, Northland, Te Awamutu, Hamilton, Rotorua, Wellington and Blenheim.
New variant? No masks? Here's what's driving the U.K.'s Covid surge
What a difference three months can make. On July 19, Britons celebrated as England marked "Freedom Day," seeing a near-full lifting of Covid-19 restrictions. Covid-related hospitalizations and deaths were relatively low, even if cases continued to rise, and the country's vaccination rollout was largely lauded as a success internationally. On Thursday, there were more than 50,000 infections recorded in the U.K. in a single day — the highest daily count since mid-July and a higher number than reported in Germany, France, Italy, Spain and Portugal combined. The country also saw 115 deaths, with Tuesday marking a daily death toll of 223 people — the highest since March.
Covid-19 Australia: Victoria records 1,750 cases and nine deaths on first weekend out of lockdown
Victoria has recorded 1,750 new Covid-19 cases and nine deaths overnight as residents celebrated their first weekend out of lockdown. Residents have been taking full advantage of their new freedoms to visit hair salons, retail stores, and cafes on Saturday. It comes after stay-at-home orders were lifted at 11.59pm on Thursday after the beleaguered state passed its 70 per cent Covid vaccination target. Premier Daniel Andrews confirmed the state was on track to reach its 80 per cent double-jab target by next weekend, paving the way for further restrictions to ease. The new cases announced on Saturday marks a significant drop in infections after 2,189 were recorded on Friday.
New Zealand’s Covid outbreak spreads to South Island
New Zealand has reported 104 new coronavirus infections, including the first community case of the virus in the country’s South Island in nearly a year, health officials said. Most of the new infections reportedon Saturday were in Auckland, New Zealand’s largest city that has been under a strict lockdown for more than two months. Looser restrictions are in place in most of the rest of the country of 5 million. The risks of a further spread from the case reported in Blenheim, in the north-east of the South Island, remained low, health officials said, with the person likely in the late stage of infection.
As Russia's COVID-19 toll surges, a Siberian hospital struggles to cope
The beds at the intensive care unit at this Siberian hospital rarely stay empty for long. Doctors at Hospital No. 2 in the Russian city of Biysk are having to cope with an unprecedented surge of coronavirus patients, many of whom are unvaccinated. Doctors at the hospital have to work up to three 24-hour shifts in a row. The work is much harder than during the first wave of the pandemic last year, deputy chief doctor Olga Kaurova said. "Last year we kept the numbers at 23-24 people. Today we have 65 people in intensive care," Kaurova told Tolk Channel, a local media outlet, on Wednesday. "Most of our patients in the ICU are not vaccinated."
Analysis: Vaccinated Singapore shows zero-COVID countries cost of reopening
Few are left to inoculate in wealthy Singapore after a vigorous campaign achieved a level of coverage envied by many nations battling the coronavirus pandemic, but a record surge in deaths and infections gives warning of risks that may still lie ahead. Despite mask mandates, strict social curbs and COVID-19 booster doses available for over a month, infections in the Asian city-state's latest outbreak, driven by the Delta variant, took the death toll to 280, up from 55 early in September. "Singapore may potentially experience two to three epidemic waves as measures are increasingly relaxed," said Alex Cook, a disease modelling expert at the National University of Singapore (NUS).
German Covid-19 infections at highest since mid-May
Germany recorded the highest incidence of coronavirus infections since mid-May on Saturday, reaching the threshold of 100 cases per 100,000 in the past seven days that used to be the yardstick for imposing a strict lockdown. However, Health Minister Jens Spahn noted that Germany could cope much better now due to vaccination, although he said restrictions like mask wearing and limits on indoor activity for unvaccinated people would stay until next spring. The seven-day incidence rate of cases – which until August was used to decide whether to impose more stringent COVID-19 curbs – rose to 100 on Saturday from 95 on Friday, the Robert Koch Institute responsible for disease control said.
COVID-19 cases recorded in eastern Europe hit 20 million
The number of coronavirus infections recorded so far in eastern Europe surpassed 20 million on Sunday, according to a Reuters tally, as the region grapples with its worst outbreak since the pandemic started and inoculation efforts lag. Countries in the region have the lowest vaccination rates in Europe, with less than half of the population having received a single dose. Hungary tops the region's vaccination rates with 62% of its population having gotten at least one shot, whereas Ukraine has given just 19% of its residents a single dose, according to Our World in Data.
Russia Reports Another Day of Record Virus Deaths, Infections
Russia registered its highest number of daily coronavirus deaths and new cases since the start of the pandemic Friday as authorities across the country scramble to impose partial lockdowns and other restrictions to thwart the spread of the virus in the coming weeks. The government’s coronavirus information center reported a double record of 1,064 new fatalities and 37,141 new infections over the past 24 hours. Russia has repeatedly broken new all-time highs for Covid-19 deaths over the past month amid stubbornly low vaccination rates. It is currently reporting the second-highest number of daily fatalities in the world after the United States.
A Resurgent Covid-19 Means Another Tough Winter Could Be Coming
Restaurants and hair salons are shut. Schooling is remote. People are stuck at home after 8 p.m. At least one country in Europe has already returned to full-on crisis mode as Covid flares anew from the U.K. to Russia to Singapore. Latvia’s response is the most extreme, but the Baltic nation isn’t alone in grappling with a coronavirus surge reminiscent of 2020. Britain, which inoculated residents early and dropped most Covid curbs, is now seeing the most cases since July. In Germany, they’re at the highest since May. In countries where vaccination rates are lagging behind, the situation is worse. With Covid deaths at record levels in Russia, Moscow is headed for a lockdown this month. Romania has run out of intensive-care beds.
Romania revives COVID-19 restrictions as hospitals struggle
Dr Petruta Filip is working 100-hour weeks at a Bucharest hospital which, like hospitals throughout Romania, is struggling under an onslaught of COVID-19 patients in a country with worryingly low vaccination rates. The European Union country of around 19 million people has only 35 percent of its adults fully vaccinated compared with a European Union average of 74 percent. It is the second-least vaccinated nation in the 27-nation bloc. That is crippling Romania’s creaking healthcare system, which is also facing record-high death and infection numbers. Romania has reported more than 1.5 million cases of the coronavirus, including at least 44,000 deaths, since the pandemic began.
Austria threatens to lockdown the unvaccinated as Covid cases soar
Unvaccinated Austrians have been warned that they could face new lockdown restrictions if Covid cases continue to rise. Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg said on Friday night that those who have not been jabbed may only be allowed to leave their homes for certain reasons.
Austrian chancellor says the unvaccinated could be forced to lockdown in their homes if COVID-19 cases worsen
Austria's chancellor on Friday warned of possible restrictions for people not vaccinated against COVID-19. Restrictions for unvaccinated people would begin if ICU capacity reaches 25%, he said, according to the Associated Press. If more than 600 people require treatment in the ICU, health authorities will require the unvaccinated to remain in their homes.
Austria to impose lockdown for unvaccinated against COVID-19
Austria is threatening a potential lockdown for those unvaccinated if the situation in the country's intensive care units worsens, new government plans suggest. "We are about to stumble into a pandemic of the unprotected," Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg said Friday night after a crisis meeting. Schallenberg ruled out a lockdown for those who have been vaccinated or recovered from COVID-19. He said he hopes the plans will send a signal.