The US administered 394,690,283 doses of Covid-19 vaccines in the country as of Saturday and distributed 478,362,045 doses, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said.
Those figures are up from the 393,756,866 vaccine doses that the CDC said had gone into arms by Friday out of 477,069,555 doses delivered.
The agency said 214,870,696 people had received at least one dose while 185,143,698 people had been fully vaccinated as of 6:00 a.m. ET on Saturday, Reuters reports.
Nicaragua has authorised two Cuban-made coronavirus vaccines to be used in the Central American nation, the Cuban state-run pharmaceutical corporation BioCubaFarma said.
Cuban scientists have developed three vaccines against Covid-19, all of which are waiting to receive official recognition from the World Health Organization.
BioCubaFarma said on Twitter that the Health Regulation Authority of Nicaragua’s health ministry authorised the Abdala and Soberana vaccines for emergency use, Reuters reports.
Hundreds of hot air balloons launched into the skies over Albuquerque in the US on Saturday for the first time in two years, as the city’s balloon fiesta returned following a hiatus due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta brings millions of tourist dollars into the city but last year’s event was canceled as a precaution because of the pandemic.
The event’s website says 588 hot air balloons will take part and that nearly 900,000 visitors are expected to attend.
While the event is not requiring proof of vaccination against Covid-19, participants are required to wear masks indoors or at crowded outdoor settings, Reuters reports.
Boris Johnson has defended the government’s decision to require all care home workers in England to get the Covid vaccine.
Health secretary Sajid Javid said on Saturday that staff who were not prepared to have the jab should “get out and get another job”, PA reports.
Johnson said: “I think any government really hesitates for a long time before asking people to get a vaccine as a condition of their employment.
“It is a dilemma but we did decide some time ago now that the right thing, for the peace of mind of families up and down the country, is that people working in social care should get vaccinated.”
France has reported 4,948 new coronavirus cases, Reuters reports.
The country has had over 7 million cases overall.
Since last year the eight provincial governments across Australia have constantly shifted restrictions and enforcement about travel and quarantine as outbreaks are suppressed in one place or flare up in another. Parochialism and public health are each factors. A federal vaccine program defined mostly by its absence has maintained that necessity. Where politicians elsewhere speak in blasé style about living with the virus, much of Australia still has the luxury of living without it.
Which makes the prospect of a nationwide Ashes tour daunting for the England players and staff weighing it up. It is counterintuitive that people from a country smothered in the virus should be anxious about travelling somewhere that is not, but the double-jabbed ranks of the autumn tourists can by now live a mostly unencumbered life at home. Travelling to or around Australia at present offers far less certainty.
France has reported 31 new coronavirus deaths in hospital in the past 24 hours, Reuters reports.
It has also recorded that 1,325 people are in intensive care with Covid-19 compared with 1,355 on Friday.
The Covid-19 death toll in the US has now surpassed 700,000, despite the Covid-19 vaccines’ wide availability, in what one expert called a “tragic and completely avoidable milestone”.
Data from Johns Hopkins University shows that the US went just past 700,000 deaths on Friday; the US had previously reached 600,000 deaths in June. The country has had a total of 43.6m confirmed cases of Covid-19 since the start of the pandemic, according to Johns Hopkins.
More data from Italy. Patients in hospital with Covid-19 – not including those in intensive care – stood at 3,057 on Saturday, down from 3,118 a day earlier.
There were 27 new admissions to intensive care units, up from 20 on Friday.
The total number of intensive care patients increased to 432 from a previous 429, Reuters reports.
Some 355,896 tests for Covid were carried out in the past day, compared with a previous 293,469, the health ministry said.
Singapore reported 2,356 coronavirus cases on Saturday, compared to 2,909 the previous day, and four further deaths.
Senior doctors have warned that practice staff and GPs in the UK are quitting after an unprecedented and escalating wave of abuse from patients that has followed weeks of public pressure over face-to-face appointments.
Many practices are maintaining Covid-19 protocols to prevent the spread of the virus, including the use of face masks; some patients have refused to wear them and become abusive when asked to do so.
Italy reported 25 coronavirus-related deaths on Saturday, while the daily tally of new infections was 3,312, the health ministry said.
Italy has registered 130,998 deaths in total linked to Covid-19 since its outbreak emerged in February last year, Reuters reports.
The country has reported 4.68 million cases to date.
UK death toll increases by 121
The UK recorded a further 121 Covid-19 deaths and 30,301 new cases on Saturday.
Both figures are slight falls from the previous day’s tallies of 127 and 35,577, official data showed.
Cases in the last seven days were up 3.1% on the week before, while daily fatalities of people who had tested positive for Covid-19 within the last 28 days were down 17%.
A 15-year-old girl who tested positive for Covid-19 has died on the day that she was due to have her vaccine, her family said.
The Press Association reports:
Jorja Halliday, from Portsmouth in England, died at the Queen Alexandra hospital in the Hampshire city on Tuesday after being tested for the virus four days earlier.
Her mother, Tracey Halliday, 40, said that the GCSE student at the Portsmouth Academy was a “loving girl” with lots of friends, a talented kickboxer and an aspiring musician.
She was very active, she liked to go out and spend time with her friends and loved spending time with her brothers and sisters.
Growing up she turned into a beautiful young lady, always wanting to help others, always there for everybody.
It’s heart-wrenching because your kids are always meant to outlive you, and that’s the one thing I can’t get over.
Halliday said that Jorja’s siblings were devastated at her death. She said that Jorja, who did not have any underlying health conditions, first developed flu-like symptoms before she underwent the PCR test which gave a positive result, leading to her isolating at their home.
Jorja was struggling to eat on Sunday but by Monday she could not eat at all due to her throat hurting.
A doctor prescribed antibiotics, but when Jorja’s condition worsened she was seen by a doctor who said her heart rate was double what it should be and she was taken to hospital.
They realised how serious it was and I was still allowed to touch her, hold her hand, hug her and everything else.
They did allow me that. I’m at the point where I can’t comprehend that it’s happened.
I was with her the whole time. They tried to put her on a ventilator to give her body a chance to recover.
Her heart rate didn’t stabilise. Her heart couldn’t take the strain.
They worked as well as I think they could medically but were unable to save her.
Preliminary results from the hospital’s medical examiner indicated Jorja had Covid myocarditis, heart inflammation caused by the virus. Halliday explained that Jorja had been booked to have a jab on Tuesday, but had tested positive the Saturday before. She had been planning to get the jab once the isolation period was over, but passed away on the day she had originally been scheduled to have the vaccine. Halliday said:
She had the best of care, I know that they did everything they could to save her.
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