Coronavirus updates | August 12, 2021

People wait in a queue to receive the vaccine against COVID-19 outside a shopping mall in Mumbai, August 11, 2021   | Photo Credit: REUTERS

The cumulative coronavirus vaccine doses administered in the country has crossed the 52 crore-mark, the Union health ministry said on August 11.

More than 40 lakh (40,02,634) doses were administered on August 11, according to the 7 p.m. provisional report.

You can track coronavirus cases, deaths and testing rates at the national and State levels here. A list of State Helpline numbers is available as well.

Here are the latest updates:

Kerala

 

Pandemic travel restrictions inflict substantial toll on global growth and trade: report

With travel bans around the globe for the last year and half after the COVID-19 pandemic, a new report from The Conference Board has revealed that these restrictions are inflicting a substantial toll on global trade and the industry may recover to 50 % of the 2019 level only by the end of 2021.

The pandemic- induced lockdown has had a cascading effect on 334 million people worldwide directly dependent on the travel and tourism sector, says The Conference Board, a US-based member-driven think tank.

The report said that companies are cutting costs by forgoing travel as ongoing pandemic restrictions—63 % of governments have either a total or partial ban on foreign visitors—appear to be accelerating a long-term trend toward virtual meetings.

The report said that the tourist spending, which accounted for 87 % of the total global exports of travel services, collapsed worldwide in 2020. The ongoing negative impacts of this collapse have extended beyond tourism industries directly affected by travel bans, to pummel adjacent sectors like entertainment, amusement, and food services, as well as national and regional governments dependent on tax revenues from visitors. - Biju Govind

 

Karnataka

‘Lessons from first two COVID-19 waves reason for heightened vigil at borders’

Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai justified curbs on travellers from neighbouring Kerala and Maharashtra entering Karnataka saying the government has learnt lessons from the first and second waves of COVID-19.

“Both the waves entered Karnataka from Kerala and Maharashtra, and spread across the state. Therefore, I held meetings with experts and the Health Minister to assess the situation immediately after taking the oath of office. It was decided to exercise absolute precaution in border areas,” he told media persons after inaugurating a new Intensive Care Unit at the District Government Wenlock Hospital in Mangaluru on August 12.

The government has made it mandatory for people from those two States to produce COVID-19 negative certificates not older than 72 hours before entering Karnataka. “This has been done to ensure the safety of our people,” he said. - Anil Kumar Sastry

Tamil Nadu

Masking inadequate in public places in Chennai, no facilities for safe disposal of masks, reveals survey

The use of masks is inadequate in public places such as bus stands and railway stations in Chennai, while very few commercial establishments have facilities in place for safe disposal of masks, a survey carried out by the Government Omandurar Medical College Hospital has found.

Dr. R. Jayanthi, dean of the hospital, said the survey team found 38% overall compliance with the mask norm. “However, mask compliance was inadequate in public places including at bus stands and railway stations. Adherence to masks was good in Metro stations where the usage was up to 76%. There was 68-70% compliance in hospital spaces and laboratories,” she said.

Dr. Jayanthi said that while adherence to COVID-19 appropriate behaviour improved when compared to the period before the second wave, more needs to be done. “More awareness is needed. Proper disposal of masks is needed. At the hospital, we have provided signage. As a part of the survey, we also distributed handouts on the proper disposal of masks,” she added. - Serena Josephine. M

West Bengal

Bengal extends restrictions till August 31

West Bengal has extended its Covid-19 restrictions till August 31.

There will be no relaxations for operation of local and suburban train services.

We cannot allow local trains to run till 50% of entire population is vaccinated, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said. - Shiv Sahay Singh

INTERNATIONAL

COVID-19 may become a mostly childhood disease in few years: Study

COVID-19 may behave like other common-cold coronaviruses in the next few years, affecting mostly young children who have not yet been vaccinated or exposed to the virus, according to a modelling study published on Thursday.

The US-Norwegian team noted that because COVID-19 severity is generally lower among children, the overall burden from this disease is expected to decline as the SARS-CoV-2 virus becomes endemic in the global population.

"Following infection by SARS-CoV-2, there has been a clear signature of increasingly severe outcomes and fatality with age," said Ottar Bjornstad from the University of Oslo in Norway. -PTI

INTERNATIONAL

Finland's coronavirus infections hit new daily record

Finland on August 12, registered a record number of new coronavirus infections in the space of a day, driven by the highly contagious Delta variant, the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare said.

To date, the nation of 5.5 million people has recorded 109,983 cases and 995 deaths. There are currently 83 people in hospital with COVID-19.

Prime Minister Sanna Marin announced plans a week ago to make Finns show proof of vaccination before visiting restaurants and other leisure services, as well as to start vaccinating 12- to 16-year-olds.

More than 82% of Finns have now received at least one vaccine dose and more than 48% are fully vaccinated against the coronavirus, according to data from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control. - PTI

KARNATAKA

Paediatric health camps to be held across Karnataka

Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai said the government has instructed the departments concerned to hold paediatric camps across  the State in view of detection of COVID-19 cases among children, especially in Bengaluru, in the past few days.

Speaking to reporters on his arrival at Mangaluru International Airport on August 12, Mr. Bommai said the camps will not only help detect COVID-19 cases, but also check instances of malnutrition and other problems among children.

The Health Department will conduct the camps in association with the Education Department. “It will be conducted in a big way,” he added.

MAHARASHTRA

Maharashtra: Thane logs 253 new COVID-19 cases, 7 more deaths

With the addition of 253 new cases of coronavirus, the infection count in Maharashtra's Thane district has gone up to 5,47,408, an official said on August 12.

The virus also claimed the lives of seven more people, which pushed the death toll in the district to 11,150, he said, adding that the COVID-19 mortality rate in Thane stood at 2.03 per cent. - PTI

NATIONAL

Active COVID-19 cases increase to 3,87,987

India logged 41,195 new coronavirus infections in a day taking the total tally of COVID-19 cases to 3,20,77,706, while the active cases increased to 3,87,987, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Thursday.

The death toll climbed to 4,29,669 with 490 fresh fatalities, the data updated at 8 am showed.

The active cases comprise 1.21% of the total infections, while the national COVID-19 recovery rate stands at 97.45%, the ministry said.  An increase of 1,636 cases has been recorded in the active COVID-19 caseload in a span of 24 hours. - PTI

NEW ZEALAND

New Zealand plans to start reopening borders early next year

New Zealand, which has completely stamped out the coronavirus, plans to cautiously reopen its borders to international travellers early next year, the government said Thursday.

Officials also said they would delay second shots of the Pfizer vaccine in order to speed up first shots to protect more people as the threat of the delta variant grows.

New Zealand's success in erasing the coronavirus has allowed life to return almost to normal. The South Pacific nation of 5 million people has reported just 26 deaths since the pandemic began. - PTI

MAHARASHTRA

Maharashtra allows restaurants, malls to operate till 10 pm with 50% capacity

Further relaxing the COVID-19 curbs, the Maharashtra government on Wednesday decided to allow shopping malls and restaurants to remain open till 10 pm with a 50% capacity from August 15 onwards, provided the entire staff is fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Shops are also allowed to operate till 10 pm.

State Health Minister Rajesh Tope said spas and gymnasiums will also be allowed to function till 10 pm at a 50%capacity on the condition that the entire staff at these establishments has taken both doses of the vaccine.

Yoga centres and salons will also be allowed to remain open till 10 pm. - PTI

NEW DELHI

Delhi's COVID-19 vaccine stock to last for three days: Govt bulletin

With 1,40,843 vaccines administered on the previous day, Delhi's present stock of coronavirus vaccines will last for three days only, according to the city government's vaccination bulletin issued on Wednesday.

The national capital, as on Wednesday morning, had a balance stock of 6,34,660 anti-coronavirus vaccines, out of which 3,26,720 doses are of Covishield and 3,07,940 of Covaxin, data shared by the government showed. - PTI

INTERNATIONAL

WHO to decide on authorising Indian-made vaccine

A top vaccines official at the World Health Organisation says the agency expects to make a decision next month on an emergency authorisation for the Indian-made COVID-19 vaccine made by Bharat Biotech, a shot that has yet to be authorized by any Western regulatory authorities.

Dr. Mariangela Simao, a WHO assistant director-general for vaccines, says the UN health agency's assessment of the Bharat Biotech vaccine was "quite advanced" and officials hoped for a decision by mid-September.

Few studies have been published on the shot. Indian researchers have yet to share any advanced research about the vaccine, which has been authorised and used in India. Scientists in India say the vaccine is about 78% effective, but there are some questions about how the vaccine performs in the real world, including against COVID-19 variants. - PTI

KERALA

TPR going up in state due to non-enforcement of isolation protocols: Kerala HC

The test positivity rate (TPR) in the State is going up due to non-enforcement of isolation protocols properly, the Kerala High Court said on Wednesday and added that preventing crowding or full lockdown were the only options to prevent spread of COVID-19.

The observation by the court came while expressing concern over the non-implementation of the new COVID-19 guidelines at liquor shops run by state-owned Beverages Corporation (BEVCO) where people could be seen waiting in long queues for hours on end to buy alcohol. - PTI

 

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