Entornointeligente.com / Covid-19 has infected more than 128.76 million people and taken over 2.81 million lives. Here are virus-related developments for March 31: A healthcare worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer vaccine at the Victor Jarra stadium during a city-wide lockdown reinstated to help contain the spread of Covid-19 in Santiago, Chile, March 30, 2021. (AP) Wednesday, March 31, 2021
Pfizer vaccine safe, effective on adolescents in trial, companies say
Pfizer Inc and BioNTech SE said their Covid-19 vaccine was safe and effective and produced robust antibody responses in 12- to 15-year olds, paving the way for them to seek US emergency use authorisation in weeks.
Pfizer hopes that vaccinations of the group could begin before the next school year, Albert Bourla, Pfizer's chairman and chief executive, said in a statement.
Pfizer's vaccine is already authorised for use in people starting at age 16. The new study offers the first evidence of how the vaccine will also work in school-age adolescents.
In the trial of 2,260 adolescents aged 12 to 15, there were 18 cases of Covid-19 in the group that got a placebo shot and none in the group that got the vaccine, resulting in 100 percent efficacy, the companies said in a statement.
Russia registers world's first Covid-19 vaccine for animals
Russia has registered the world's first vaccine against Covid-19 for animals, the country's agriculture safety watchdog Rosselkhoznadzor said.
Russia already has three coronavirus vaccines for humans, the most well known of which is Sputnik V. Moscow has also given emergency approval to two others, EpiVacCorona and CoviVac.
The vaccine for animals, developed by a unit of Rosselkhoznadzor, was named Carnivac-Cov, the watchdog said.
Australia misses vaccine target as concerns grow over slow rollout
Australia will fall well short of its initial vaccination target, Prime Minister Scott Morrison admitted, claiming European export restrictions were partly to blame.
Largely coronavirus-free Australia has been heralded globally as a pandemic success story, but it is one of the few rich nations to have an extremely limited vaccination rollout.
So far, just 670,000 doses have been administered in Australia, according to official statistics, far below the initial plan to jab four million people by the end of March.
Ukraine reports record daily high of 407 related deaths
Ukraine registered a record daily high of 407 coronavirus-related deaths over the past 24 hours, health minister Maksym Stepanov said.
The previous high of 362 deaths was on March 25.
Stepanov said 11,226 new infections were reported over the past 24 hours. Ukraine has reported a total of 1,674,168 coronavirus cases and 32,825 deaths.
India's daily cases rise at slower pace than day earlier
India reported 53,480 new virus cases, health ministry data showed, the second day that cases have risen less than the day before.
Deaths were at their highest since mid-December, according to a Reuters tally, with 354 people dying of the coronavirus in the last 24 hours, the ministry said, taking total mortalities to 162,468.
India has been reporting a spike in cases this month, with its richest state of Maharashtra, home to the financial capital of Mumbai, accounting for a majority of its case load.
China locks down city on Myanmar border over virus fears
A Chinese city near the border with Myanmar has imposed a lockdown after six coronavirus cases were reported, the first significant cluster of Covid-19 disclosed in almost two months.
Three asymptomatic cases in Ruili, a city of over 210,000 people, were also recorded as Myanmar nationals, aged between 24 and 28, according to health authorities in Yunnan province.
Ruili will also test all its residents for the virus, and everyone will go under “home quarantine” for a week, said an official notice.
This means that residents are not to leave their homes without “special reasons”, and only one member of each household can leave to buy daily necessities with permission.
Germany's confirmed cases rise by 17,051 – RKI
The number of confirmed virus cases in Germany increased by 17,051 to 2,808,873, data from the Robert Koch Institute for infectious diseases showed.
The reported death toll rose by 249 to 76,342, the tally showed.
Australia's Queensland reports fewer new cases, eyes easing curbs
Australia reported a drop-off in new cases of locally acquired Covid-19 in Queensland, fuelling optimism that a three-day snap lockdown in state capital Brisbane will be lifted ahead of the Easter holidays.
More than two million residents of Australia's third-largest city have been asked to stay home until Thursday evening as authorities rushed to contain two distinct virus clusters, which have grown to 17 cases.
“Fingers crossed, all will be looking good for Easter,” Queensland state Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk told reporters.
Japan wants further probe into Covid-19 origins
Japan is calling for further investigation into the origins of Covid-19, saying the WHO report released this week was based on work that faced delays and lacked access to essential virus samples.
“In order to prevent future pandemics, it is indispensable to carry out prompt, independent and experts-led investigations that are free of surveillance,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato told reporters. “We are concerned that the latest investigation faced delays and the lack of access to virus samples.”
Paris mayor calls for schools to be closed to rein in Covid-19
Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo said that schools should be closed to rein in the spread of the virus, speaking ahead of possible new restrictive measures to be announced later in the day by the government.
“I think the schools should be closed”, Hidalgo told BFM TV.
Macron, Merkel discuss vaccine cooperation with Putin
French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel discussed possible cooperation on vaccines with Russian President Vladimir Putin in a joint video conference on Tuesday, Macron's office has said in a statement.
Mexico reports 807 more fatalities
Mexico has reported 807 new confirmed Covid-19 fatalities, bringing the country's total to 202,633 deaths, according to health ministry data.
The government says the real case numbers are likely significantly higher, and separate data published recently byt he health ministry suggested the actual death toll from coronavirus may be at least 60 percent above the confirmed figure
Brazil reports record 3,780 deaths
Brazil has registered 3,780 Covid-19 deaths, a new record in the Latin American nation which now regularly accounts for about a quarter of coronavirus deaths worldwide on any given day, more than any other country.
Cases rose by 84,949, the ministry said. Deaths now total 317,646 while cases amount to 12,658,109.
Pfizer to move up vaccine deliveries to Canada
Pfizer has agreed to move up deliveries of its Covid-19 vaccine to Canada, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said, one day after restricting AstraZeneca jabs over safety concerns.
“Pfizer has now confirmed that they will be moving up five million doses from later in the summer into June. That will bring our total from 4.6 million to 9.6 million doses for that month alone,” Trudeau told a news conference on Tuesday.
The arrival of these, as well as Moderna and AstraZeneca shots, bringing total doses expected by June 30 to more than 40 million, will allow the country to “begin our ram p-up phase” and meet its goal of inoculating all Canadians by the end of summer, he said.
“We want to get more doses of vaccines… to as many Canadians as possible in the coming months,” he said.
Hospitals in Ecuador's capital overwhelmed
Ecuador's health system is under severe strain from a spike in Covid-19 and some hospitals in the capital Quito are working above capacity to treat patients, doctors have said.
Ecuador suffered a brutal outbreak of coronavirus in early 2020, primarily in the largest city of Guayaquil. Authorities controlled the situation after several months, but in recent weeks have seen cases jump in cities around the country.
“The saturation of the health system is not only in Quito but at the national level,” Dr. Victor Alvarez, president of the doctors association of the state of Pichincha, where Quito is located, told reporters.
“Seeing images of patients lying on the ground, or perhaps on a military mattress, receiving oxygen in emergency units, that's sad.”
Over dozen US states to open up vaccinations to all adults
More than a dozen states will open vaccine eligibility to all adults this week in a major expansion of Covid-19 shots for tens of millions of Americans amid an increase in coronavirus cases.
States opening eligibility to anyone ages 16 and older on Monday included Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Ohio, North Dakota and Kansas.
Meanwhile, the director of the CDC warned of another wave of infections after cases in the US rose 10 percent over the last week. Several Northeastern states and Michigan have seen the biggest increases, with some reporting hundreds or thousands more new cases per day than two weeks ago.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo says New York state residents over 30 are now eligible for Covid-19 vaccinations, and everyone over 16 will be eligible starting April 6.
Source: TRTWorld and agencies
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