Covid-19 pandemic: Rising cases in China’s Guangzhou, Canada to mix vaccines due to shortages

People wait in line to receive a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine at a clinic in Toronto, on 19 May 2021 | Photo: Cole Burston/Bloomberg

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New Delhi: The Covid-19 pandemic continues to wreak havoc across the world. The latest count is more than 172,914,703 cases and 3,717,430 deaths.

While France will begin vaccinating its teens from 15 June, China’s Guangzhou is curbing restrictions to stem a rising wave of new infections. Protests in Brazil continue against President Jair Bolsonaro’s handling of the pandemic.

ThePrint brings you some stories from around the world on the pandemic to keep you updated. 

More regions in Canada mixing second dose of vaccine

The provinces of Ontario and Quebec in Canada continue to see a steady decline of Covid-19 infections and hospitalisations as more regions across the country move to mix and match second doses of the vaccine, The Globe and Mail reported.

In British Columbia, provincial health officer Dr Bonnie Henry said the province is having issues maintaining a steady supply of the Moderna vaccine, which means some who received it as a first dose may get the Pfizer vaccine as their second.

Health officials in Ontario say people who have received a first dose of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine will be able to get Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna as a booster starting on Friday. The decision follows guidance from the National Advisory Committee on Immunization earlier this week.

Canada has seen 1,387,445 Covid cases and 25,644 deaths.

Also read: Lab leak is the biggest suspect in 1977 flu pandemic. But it took 3 decades to gain currency

Africa faces rising threat of Covid-19: WHO

Healthcare systems across Africa are “far from ready” to cope with a fresh surge of coronavirus infections, the WHO has warned, according to a report in Al Jazeera.

“Many African hospitals and clinics are still far from ready to cope with a huge rise in critically ill patients, the threat of a third wave in Africa is real and rising” WHO regional director for Africa, Matshidiso Moeti, said Thursday. In recent weeks, the continent has seen a rise in infections. South Africa, officially the most affected African country, now has more than 1.6 million cases and 56,439 deaths.

Africa has officially registered more than 4.8 million cases and 130,000 deaths.

China’ industrial hub grappling with new cases

Health authorities in the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou are hoping to stop a new outbreak of Covid-19 infections through expanded testing capacity and strict quarantine measures in affected areas, South China Morning Post reported.

The industrial hub with a 19 million population has been grappling with a growing number of cases since 21 May. The recent cases were found from a cluster infected by highly transmissible strain first detected in India, a variant now named Delta by the WHO. It is unclear how the variant entered the community. The health authorities have expanded testing capacity, and public health expert are saying the situation “would have been more alarming” without it.

China has registered 91,194 cases and 4,636 deaths so far.

Also read: Trust science, not scientists, is the lesson from doubt over Wuhan wet market theory: Fukuyama

Brazilians bang pots in protest as 2,500 die due 

Pot-banging protests have erupted across several cities in Brazil since Wednesday evening as President Jair Bolsonaro addressed the nation, just days after protestors took to the streets across the country over his handling of the coronavirus pandemic, Reuters reported.

On Wednesday alone, almost 100,000 got infected with coronavirus and 2,507 died.  Thousands participated in protests organised by Leftist political parties, unions and student associations in at least 16 cities across the country. In Sao Paulo, Brazil’s largest city, thousands of mask-wearing people blocked one the largest city avenues.

Brazil has so far recorded 16,803,472 cases and 4,69,784 deaths, the second highest in the world.

France to offer vaccine to 12-18 age group 

France will start offering Covid-19 vaccines to everyone between 12 and 18 years of age from 15 June, President Emmanuel Macron said Wednesday, as reported by France 24.

Macron also noted that 50 per cent of French adults have now received at least one Covid vaccine jab, calling it “truly a turning point” in the country’s inoculation drive. The pressure on hospitals has eased, with the number of Covid patients in ICU falling steadily in recent weeks, with 2,825 serious cases as of Tuesday, down from around 6,000 in April.

France has recorded 56,94,076 cases and 1,09,857 deaths due to the virus.

What we’re also reading:

This has never been seen before’: Common illnesses wiped out in fight against COVID-19, Sydney Morning Herald

State panel recommends ending mask rules for workers if everyone is vaccinatedLos Angeles Times

Also read: Even a simple surgical mask can prevent spread of Covid, German study says


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