PARIS – France abandoned plans for six weeks of coronovirus vaccination instead of three.
Health Minister Olivier Vernon announced to maintain time between two injections of the Pfizer vaccine in 21 to 28 days, which is in line with WHO recommendations.
Ellen Fisher, chairman of the scientific committee advising the government on the vaccine, says the effect of long intervals between injections remains unclear and that the first pill only provides limited immunity.
He says replacing injections can be risky at a time when France faces hospitalization of COVID-19 and the rapid spread of new viruses.
In early January, French Prime Minister Jean Castex announced an extension of the time between shots to six weeks so that more people could get the initial shots.
France has recorded 3.1 million cases and 445 new deaths on Monday, leading to a total of at least 73,494 deaths.
The COVID-19 version brings new dimensions to Europe’s epidemic battle, planning to fight the virus. Some hospitals near capacity in hard-hit areas of Indonesia due to 1 million virus cases. The number of American viruses has plummeted, but attempts to sniff COVID-19 have become a race between the vaccine and the mutation virus. Taiwan leaves 5,000 people in search of the source of the hospital’s cluster.
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BOGOTA, Colombia – Colombia officials say Defense Minister Carlos Holmes Trujillo died of complications of COVID-19. He was 69.
President Ivan Duke says Holmes Trujillo died early Tuesday, saying: “His life was a reflection of his vow for public service.”
Holmes Trujillo became Minister of Defense in November 2019, after serving as Foreign Minister. He was also the Mayor of Cali from 1988–1990.
Colombia reported more than 15,000 new cases per day in mid-January, up from about 7,000 cases in early December.
There have been more than 50,000 confirmed deaths from coronaviruses in Colombia.
LISBON, Portugal – Portugal’s Health Minister says authorities are considering seeking help from other EU countries amid a surge in COVID-19 cases.
According to Johns Hopes University, Portugal has the worst death rate of 100,000 people per day and death rate per 100,000 people in the last one week.
Health Minister Marta Temido says sending patients to other EU countries is not uncommon in blame. But, she says, Portugal has the disadvantage of being geographically remote and hospitals across the continent are under epidemic pressure. She says that the country may be asked to send medical staff.
Portuguese hospitals are under severe stress, Tempo told public broadcaster RTP. “We have beds available,” she said. “The only thing we are struggling with is finding staff.”
That request can be difficult to fulfill, as all countries in the 27-nation block are operating with their own pandemic strains, with the emergence of virus variants now becoming more difficult.
JAKARTA, Indonesia – The epidemic began to cross 1 million on Tuesday after Indonesia confirmed coronovirus infection and some hard-hit areas were close to hospital capacity.
Indonesia’s Ministry of Health announced that new daily infections increased by 13,094 on Tuesday to bring the country’s total to 1,012,350, the highest in Southeast Asia. The total number of deaths reached 28,468.
The milestone comes just a few weeks after the Indonesian embarked on a massive campaign of two-thirds of the country’s 270 million people, with President Joko Widodo getting the first shot of the Chinese-made vaccine. In the world’s fourth most populous country, health care workers, military, police, teachers, and other risk-free populations are being given priority for the vaccine.
Officials say Indonesia will require about 427 million doses, due to an estimate that 15% of doses may be wasted during the delivery process in a vast nation of more than 17,000 islands, where transport and infrastructure are limited in locations.
Jakarta remains the hardest hit city in Indonesia.
Stockholm – Sweden’s foreign minister says that people in the Scandinavian country should not expect to be able to travel globally during Easter. As Sweden gave its advice to avoid unnecessary visits to countries outside the Schengen travel zone of the European Union and Europe.
“We estimate that there will be uncertainty for many months globally. This is a holistic assessment of what the destinations will be like, ”Foreign Minister Ann Linde said on Tuesday.
Linde said the recommendation to avoid trips outside the European Union would run until 15 April. Easter is in early April.
He said that traveling inside the 27-member EU is “by no means risk-free” although it is not advised against it.
Sweden, which has opted for a much-awaited COVID-19 approach to keep large sections of society open, with 11,005 confirmed viruses and over 547,100 cases.
LONDON – Britain is set to announce a change in its quarantine rules later on Tuesday, allowing anyone in the country to come to the hotel to spend 10 days at their expense.
The vaccine minister, Nadim Zahavi, said “the issue will be announced later today”, but will not be drawn on what the change will be.
The British government is reviewing its quarantine policies amid concerns over new forms of coronovirus. Whether the changes will be universal and apply to all incoming people, including British citizens, or just those coming from high-risk coronavirus countries is unclear.
Zahavi told Sky News that “as we vaccinate the adult population more, if there are new versions like the South African or Brazilian variants, we need to be very careful.”
BEIJING – Chinese airlines are offering refund tickets as coronovirus continues to spread in the northeast of the country.
The proposal by the government’s aviation authority to stop people traveling during the Lunar New Year holiday next month was clouded on Tuesday.
China has largely controlled the virus spread in most areas, but travel limits remain where outbreaks have been detected, including in the capital Beijing. Schools are breaking up a week ago and migrant workers have been told not to return to their hometowns.
The National Health Commission reported that the nation’s deaths from COVID-19 increased one after another to 89,619 from 4,636, with most new cases reported in the northeast, where winter temperatures are well below freezing.
The National Health Commission on Tuesday reported 53 new cases in Heilongjiang province, seven in Jilin province and one in the south. Business hubs in Beijing and Shanghai both reported two new cases.
TAIPEI, Taiwan – Health officials in Taiwan are leaving 5,000 people searching for the source of two new coronovirus cases involving the hospital.
Authorities said they have not been able to identify how the spouses became infected after a brief hospital stay at Taoyuan General Hospital, located in Taoyuan City, outside the capital of Taiwan. The person had been in hospital for three days for health problems related to COVID-19 while his wife cared for him.
Those quarantined included patients who were discharged from the hospital between 6–19 January and their caregivers.
Taiwan is on high alert after the latest domestic cluster, which has now seen 15 cases from hospital in Taoyuan.
Taiwan has been lauded for its swift and sustained efforts to incorporate COVID-19, despite its proximity to China, with only seven deaths and fewer than 900 confirmed cases.
AUSTIN, Texas – The number of COVID-19 patients hospitalized in Texas continues to fall from record highs as the state approaches the end of its deadliest month of the epidemic.
State health officials said on Monday that fewer than 13,000 people are being treated in Texas hospitals for the virus, marking the seventh consecutive day of the patient’s declining weight.
Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins said the area was starting to “see some metrics going in the right direction” as the average number of new cases daily dropped to 800.
More than 34,000 people have died since Texas’ COVID-19, which is second in the country after California. More than 5,000 new cases were reported statewide Monday.
Nationwide, coronavirus deaths and cases have decreased daily in the US in the past few weeks, but are still at alarming levels. The US, on average, is recording just under 3,100 deaths a day, down from 3,350 two weeks ago.
SEAT – Seattle has joined other cities in approving additional pay for grocery store employees during the COVID-19 epidemic.
The city council on Monday approved legislation requiring an additional $ 4 an hour payment for large grocery stores. The Seattle Times passed the report 8–0, approving a requirement that it obtain a three-quarter super-majority to go into effect immediately.
Mayor Jenny Durkan called the policy “a strong step forward in Seattle’s recovery”.
The new requirement applies to grocery companies with more than 500 employees and stores larger than 10,000 square feet worldwide. This does not apply to convenience stores or farmers markets.
Covered businesses must pay their retail employees $ 4 an hour on top of the salary they currently receive as long as the city’s coronovirus citizens remain under emergency effect.
The California cities of Los Angeles, Long Beach and Berkeley have promoted “dangerous salaries” for grocery employees within the past month.
BOISE, Idaho – Legislation to limit private and public ceremonies to 10 people or fewer to end coronovirus restrictions has been passed by the Idaho House and led by the Senate. But the measure faces legal and constitutional questions.
The House voted Monday 55–15 to approve a concurrent resolution aimed at the 30 health order on December 30 by Republican Government Brad Little and the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare. The 10-person limit does not apply to religious or political ceremonies.
Supporters of the resolution say they want to remove part of an emergency declaration by Little but leave the declaration in place. However, the resolution targets a health order, not an emergency declaration.
The new ORLEANS – hospitalized for COVID-19 in Louisiana, has fallen to the lowest level since late December – ahead of a post-holiday season surge that saw the number hit a record high.
The data posted on Monday by the state’s health department puts the number of people suffering from the disease caused by the new coronavirus at 1,638. On January 7, the number was 2,069, exceeding a peak of less than 2,000 in the first fatal surge that hit the state in early 2020.
The Louisiana number is similar to a national trend. The number of COVID-19 patients in the US hospital has dropped from a high of 132,000 on January 7 to about 110,000.
MINNEAPOLIS – A new Brazilian version of the coronovirus has made its first known appearance in the United States, in a man who recently returned to Minnesota after traveling to that country, state health officials announced Monday.
The virus, known as the Brazilian P.1 variant, was found in a sample of a patient living in Minneapolis-St. Paul became ill in the area and the first week of January, the Minnesota Department of Health said in a statement. Epidemiologists were re-interviewing the person to get more information about the person’s illness, travel, and contacts.
There was no immediate indication that the variant was spreading in the state.
Viruses are constantly mutating, and new versions – called variants – often emerge. Health officials are also concerned about variants that have previously been reported in the United Kingdom and South Africa. Researchers believe they can be spread more easily by viruses that have already caused about 420,000 deaths in the United States.
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