Coronavirus updates | November 18, 2021

A farmer getting vaccination at Vellakkoil near Palayamkottai. File Image.   | Photo Credit: SHAIKMOHIDEEN A

India added 11,919 new coronavirus infections, taking the country's total tally of COVID-19 cases to 3,44,78,517, while the active cases climbed to 1,28,762, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Thursday.

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:


AstraZeneca antibody drug works to prevent COVID-19 in longer-term studies

AstraZeneca said on Thursday its COVID-19 antibody drug was 83% effective in cutting the risk of people contracting symptomatic illness in a six-month follow-up study, cementing the drugmaker's lead in developing preventative coronavirus treatments.

The latest round of positive results potentially position AstraZeneca as a rare supplier of both COVID-19 vaccines and treatments, with the drugmaker having said the therapy's "real advantage" was as a preventative shot, rather than as a treatment- Reuters

Madhya Pradesh

Half of MP's eligible population fully vaccinated against COVID-19: Minister

Half of the eligible population in Madhya Pradesh has received both the doses of vaccine against coronavirus and the state government has set a target of providing both the jabs to everyone by December 25, state's Public Health and Family Welfare Minister Dr Prabhuram Choudhary said on Thursday.

On Wednesday, 16,83,512 eligible people were administered the vaccine doses till 9 pm under the mega campaign-6 in the state, he said, adding that the figures will go up as statistics from remote areas and those collected through offline mode were yet to be added.

Out of the total estimated eligible population of 5.59 crore in the state, 2,75,43,593 people have been administered both the doses of vaccine, the minister said after reviewing the mega campaign.- PTI


Third foreign athlete in Beijing tests positive for COVID-19

China reported on Thursday a third COVID-19 case among foreign athletes at preparatory events ahead of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics, which are being organised with stringent measures in place to control any outbreaks.

A foreign athlete participating in the Luge World Cup in Beijing was confirmed on Tuesday as being an asymptomatic case after a routine COVID-19 test, state media reported.

The athlete has been transferred to an isolation facility for observation, state media reported, quoting Zhao Weidong, an official of the Beijing 2022 Winter Games.

The athlete is a close contact of a previously confirmed asymptomatic case, Mr. Zhao said, without revealing the identity or nationality of either of the athletes.- Reuters


India records 11,919 new COVID-19 infections; active cases climb to 1,28,762

With 11,919 fresh cases, India's COVID-19 tally has climbed to 3,44,78,517, while the number of active cases has gone up to 1,28,762, the Union health ministry said on Thursday.

The death toll due to the viral disease has shot up to 4,64,623 with 470 more fatalities, according to the ministry's data updated at 8 am.

The daily rise in the number of coronavirus cases has been below 20,000 for 41 straight days now and less than 50,000 fresh cases have been reported for 144 consecutive days.

The number of active cases of the infection has gone up to 1,28,762, accounting for 0.37 per cent of the total caseload, the lowest since March 2020, while the national COVID-19 recovery rate was recorded at 98.28 per cent, the highest since March 2020, the ministry said.

An increase of 207 cases was recorded in the active COVID-19 caseload in a span of 24 hours, it added.


Vaccine hesitancy greatest threat in overcoming Covid: Adar Poonawalla

Serum Institute of India CEO Adar Poonawalla on Wednesday termed vaccine hesitancy as the greatest threat in overcoming the COVID-19 pandemic while urging all adults to get vaccinated at the earliest.

He said that 200 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine were lying with the states and people should get themselves vaccinated as soon as possible.

"The vaccine industry has worked tirelessly to provide enough stocks for the nation. Today there are over 200 million doses available with states. I urge all adults to get vaccinated as soon as possible. Vaccine hesitancy is now the greatest threat in overcoming this pandemic," Mr. Poonawalla said in a tweet.- PTI


Udupi to launch door-to-door COVID-19 vaccination drive

Udupi Deputy Commissioner M. Kurma Rao on Wednesday directed healthcare workers to visit every household in the district and coax eligible people who have not yet taken the COVID-19 vaccination to obtain one.

Chairing the district task force meeting on vaccination at the district office in Rajatadri, Manipal, Mr. Rao said vaccination was the only weapon to fight the pandemic and hence everyone should get vaccinated.

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Madhya Pradesh

M.P. links ration benefits to COVID-19 vaccination

The Madhya Pradesh Government has decided that the subsidised or free food grains at all fair price shops will be given only to those who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

An order by the Food and Civil Supplies Department dated November 7, 2021, said “beneficiaries must be informed that to draw the benefit of the scheme both doses of vaccine is compulsory”.

The State Government launched a mega vaccination drive on Wednesday.

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Uttar Pradesh

UP becomes first State to inoculate over 4 crore people with both doses: CM

Uttar Pradesh has become the first state in the country to provide COVID vaccination security cover to 4 crore people with both its doses.

In UP, total 14.33 crore doses of Covid vaccine have been administered with 10.33 crore people taking the first dose and over 4.1 crore both. Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath made this announcement on his tweeter handle, terming the state’s record achievement as “teeka jeet ka” (vaccine of victory).

"UP has become the first state in the country to provide complete protection cover of both doses of Covid vaccine to more than 4 crore citizens,” the Chief Minister said.- PTI

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