India’s daily Covid figures hit a new high today with 3,79,257 fresh infections and 3,645 deaths reported in 24 hours. The caseload surged to 1.83 crore; over 2.04 lakh people have died so far. The spike has overwhelmed hospitals.
India has been recording over three lakh cases every day for over a week now. More than 2 lakh cases a day are being recorded since April 15. The shortage of hospital beds, medical oxygen and crucial anti-viral drugs has added to crisis.
All adults can get Covid shots from Saturday as the government widens the vaccine drive to fight the virus. On Wednesday, over 1.3 crore people applied for vaccination on CoWIN, the government’s registration website; a few glitches were reported initially.
Meanwhile, the US, UK, Russia and China are sending help to India amid the crisis. In a tweet, US Secretary of Defense Lloyd J Austin III, said, “We’re committed to use every resource at our disposal, within our authority, to support India’s frontline healthcare workers.”
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Taking to Twitter, Mr Sandhu said he discussed with the Pfizer CEO on how the company can also strengthen the pandemic response in India, which is in the grip of a devastating second wave of COVID-19.
“Important conversation with @AlbertBourla CEO @pfizer today evening. Discussed ways in which Pfizer could support healthcare efforts incl vaccines in India, and strengthen our pandemic response,” he tweeted.
Brazil’s death count in the coronavirus pandemic surpassed 400,000 Thursday, as the country struggled to secure enough vaccines and the Senate investigated whether President Jair Bolsonaro’s government has exacerbated the crisis.
The health ministry reported 3,001 Covid-19 deaths in the past 24 hours, bringing Brazil’s overall count to 401,186 — second only to the United States.
With 212 million people, the South American giant also has one of the highest mortality rates in the pandemic, at 189 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants — the worst in the Americas and 14th worldwide.
Brazil has been devastated by a surge in cases since the start of the year that pushed hospitals to the brink of collapse in many areas.
Although it appears to have passed the peak of the new wave, the number of daily deaths remains staggeringly high, at an average of 2,526 over the past week, behind only India.
Pfizer Inc’s shipment of COVID-19 vaccine to Mexico this week includes doses made in its U.S. plant, the first of what are expected to be ongoing exports of its shots from the United States, a source familiar with the matter told Reuters on Thursday.
The vaccine shipment, produced at Pfizer’s Kalamazoo, Michigan plant, marks the first time the drugmaker has delivered abroad from U.S facilities after a Trump-era restriction on dose exports expired at the end of March, the source said.
The U.S. government has been under mounting pressure in recent weeks to provide surplus vaccines to other nations desperately in need as it makes swift progress vaccinating its own residents. Many countries where the virus is still rampant are struggling to acquire vaccine supplies to help tame the pandemic.
Wealthy governments have been trying to stock up on COVID-19 shots from Pfizer and Moderna Inc because of their extremely high efficacy and after safety concerns and production problems temporarily sidelined vaccines from AstraZeneca Plc and Johnson & Johnson.