Coronavirus updates | October 16, 2021

Health worker collecting swab for COVID-19 teating at Kranthiveera Sangolli Rayanna Railway station in Bengaluru on October 15, 2021   | Photo Credit: The Hindu

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on October 15 met the Director General of WTO Ngozi Okonjo Iweala in the U.S. amidst India’s proposal for a temporary waiver of intellectual property rights on COVID-19 vaccines and medicines worldwide.

Opinion | Vigilance, vaccination and endemic COVID-19

The U.S. will allow fully vaccinated foreign travellers to enter the country from November 8, the White House announced on October 15.  With the announcement of the implementation of the new date, the U.S. will essentially lift travel restrictions from countries like India, United Kingdom and China.

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:


IMF hails India's 'swift and substantial' response to COVID-19 crisis

Describing the Indian government's response to the COVID-19 situation as "swift and substantial", the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has said the country continued with labour reforms and privatisation despite the pandemic.

The IMF in its report based on "consultations" among members, however, sounded a note of caution saying that the economic outlook remains "clouded" due to pandemic-related uncertainties, contributing to both downside and upside risks. -PTI


COVID-19 positivity rate is below 1% across Karnataka: CM

Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai said the State Government will take a decision on reopening schools as COVID-19 positivity rate has come down below 1% in Karnataka, including in border districts.

Addressing mediapersons in Honnali on October 16, Mr. Bommai said a meeting of experts would be held to discuss opening schools and lifting other restrictions.

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India records 15,981 COVID-19 cases, 166 fatalities in a day

India recorded 15,981 COVID-19 cases in a day taking the infection tally to 3,40,53,573 while 166 more fatalities pushed the death toll to 4,51,980, according to the Union Health Ministry's data on October 16.

The number of active Covid cases has declined to 2,01,632 and comprises 0.60% of the total infections. The national recovery rate was recorded at 98.07%, the data updated at 8 am showed.

In a day, the active COVID-19 caseload declined by 2,046. The number of people who have recuperated from the disease surged to 3,33,99,961, while the case fatality rate was recorded at 1.33%. -PTI

South Africa

South Africa to vaccinate 12 to 17-year-olds

South Africa will start vaccinating children and teenagers from October 20 as its steps up its drive to reach heard immunity against Covid by giving half of its six million young people the jab by December. “We have reached the stage where we are ready to open up vaccination for children between the age of 12 and 17,” Health Minister Joe Phaahla said on October 15.

The Pfizer vaccine, which has been approved by the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority, will be administered to the age group. -PTI


FDA panel endorses booster shot for J&J COVID-19 vaccine

A panel of U.S. health advisers endorsed booster doses of Johnson & Johnson’s single-shot COVID-19 vaccine on October 15, saying they should be offered at least two months after immunization.

J&J has asked the Food and Drug Administration for flexibility with its booster, arguing the extra dose adds important protection as early as two months after initial vaccination but that it might work better if people wait until six months later. -AP


U.S. FDA delays decision on Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine for adolescents- WSJ

The U.S. health regulator is delaying its decision on authorizing Moderna Inc's COVID-19 vaccine for adolescents to check if the shot could increase the risk of heart inflammation, the Wall Street Journal reported on October 15, citing people familiar with the matter. -Reuters


Pfizer-BioNTech ask EU agency to approve vaccine for kids 5-11

Pharmaceutical company Pfizer and biotechnology company BioNTech said on October 15 they have requested to have their coronavirus vaccine licensed for children ages 5 to 11 across the European Union.

If EU regulators agree, it would be the first opportunity for younger children in Europe to get immunized against COVID-19.

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Pakistan relaxes curbs as cases subside

Pakistan on October 15 further relaxed coronavirus related restrictions by allowing the reopening of cinemas and shrines for fully vaccinated people.

The decision was taken by the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) at a meeting after the pandemic situation continued to improve. -PTI

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Printable version | Dec 5, 2021 5:53:39 AM |

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