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The latest on the coronavirus pandemic and vaccines: Live updates

The latest on the coronavirus pandemic and vaccines: Live updates
12 hr 2 min ago

UK variant accounts for merely about 9 in 10 original infections in Germany

From Nadine Schmidt, CNN Berlin

An employee takes a swab from a woman for a Covid-19 test during a trial run for a drive-through Covid-19 testing center at the airport in Hamburg, Germany, on March 31.
An worker takes a swab from a girl for a Covid-19 take a look at in the direction of a trial run for a pressure-by blueprint of Covid-19 checking out middle at the airport in Hamburg, Germany, on March 31. Daniel Bockwoldt/converse alliance/Getty Pictures

The coronavirus variant B.1.1.7 — which turned into first diagnosed in the UK — has been existing in merely about 9 in 10 of all original Covid-19 infections in Germany, in accordance with a characterize from the nation’s public correctly being authority the Robert Koch Institute, published on Wednesday night.

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The RKI characterize shows that the UK variant accounted for 88% of latest coronavirus infections for assessments conducted between March 22 and 28.

”Here’s concerning on story of B.1.1.7 is extra contagious than other variants, in accordance with old findings’,’ the characterize acknowledged.

It added that because of the the high proportions of B.1.1.7, the total form greater is “not anticipated to sluggish down” and hospitalizations are situation to continue to rise.

On Thursday, Germany recorded 24,300 original coronavirus infections, an elevate of 1,643 situations when put next to the same day ultimate week, in accordance with RKI information.

Germany’s coronavirus deaths stood at 201 within the ultimate 24 hours, bringing the total tally of deaths to 76,543. The latest information from RKI implies that the number of latest infections per 100,000 residents has risen to 134, greater than double in only four weeks.

13 hr 45 min ago

WHO says Europe’s vaccine rollout is “unacceptably sluggish” amid “stressful” surge

From CNN’s Zahid Mahmood and Schams Elwazer

A medical staff member prepares the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine in Boulogne-Billancourt, France, on March 19.
A clinical workers member prepares the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine in Boulogne-Billancourt, France, on March 19. Christophe Ena/AP

The World Health Organization acknowledged Wednesday that the European vaccine rollout is “unacceptably sluggish” and that the surge in coronavirus infections within the continent turned into “stressful.”

In an announcement, the WHO acknowledged that vaccines believe been the most efficient blueprint out of the pandemic, however the sluggish rollout turned into prolonging it.

“Let me make certain: we must lunge up the direction of by ramping up manufacturing, reducing boundaries to administering vaccines, and the utilization of each single vial now we believe in stock, now,” WHO Regional Director for Europe Dr. Hans Kluge acknowledged in the commentary.

Dr. Dorit Nitzan, regional emergency director for the WHO Europe, warned that it turned into only 5 weeks ago that original situations in Europe had dipped to below 1 million, however now with extra mobility, gatherings over spiritual holidays and the presence of the B.1.1.7 variant — first diagnosed in the UK — there is a increased public risk.

“This variant is extra transmissible and can form greater the risk of hospitalization, it has a increased public correctly being affect and additional actions are required to control it,” Dr. Nitzan acknowledged.

As the vaccination rollout grows across Europe, the WHO are calling for early action to implement public correctly being and social measures.

The commentary added that 27 international locations in Europe are in a partial or corpulent nationwide lockdown, with 21 imposing evening time curfews. In the previous 2 weeks, 23 international locations believe intensified restrictions whereas 13 believe eased measures, with an additional 9 to apply suit.

13 hr 20 min ago

Lockdown begins in components of Austria over Easter ruin

From Nadine Schmidt in Berlin

People sit on benches in downtown Vienna, Austria, on March 22.
Folks sit on benches in downtown Vienna, Austria, on March 22. Ronald Zak/AP

Aspects of Austria are coming into lockdown from Thursday unless finally April 10 — coinciding with the Easter vacation — with a notion to curb the unfold of coronavirus and forestall an overburdened healthcare system.

The lockdown would apply to merely about four million folks living in Vienna, Burgenland and decrease Austria, the build retailers — other than grocery stores and pharmacies — museums and zoos will be closed.

Basically basically basically based on the principles launched by Vienna, curfews may per chance even be applied as folks are only allowed to head away their properties for critical looking journeys, run their pets or reveal.

Church providers and products over the Easter holidays are authorized nevertheless, whereas being topic to very strict hygiene principles.

On Thursday, Austria recorded 3,687 original coronavirus infections — with Vienna reporting merely about 1,000 original situations and greater than 800 in Lower Austria, in accordance with information from the Austrian public correctly being authority. This brings the total number of latest infections in the nation to 545,965.

Basically basically basically based on Austria’s correctly being authorities 2,323 folks are being treated in correctly being facility because of the coronavirus infections, of which 540 are in intensive care. The nation’s loss of life toll stands at 9,339.

15 hr 3 min ago

Mass spiritual pageant goes ahead in India, no topic Covid fears as nation enters second wave

From CNN’s Jessie Yeung, Esha Mitra and Manveena Suri

Hindu devotees gather for evening prayers after taking a holy dip in the waters of the River Ganges on the eve of Shahi Snan (grand bath) on Maha Shivratri festival during the ongoing religious Kumbh Mela festival in Haridwar, India, on March 10
Hindu devotees gather for evening prayers after taking a holy dip in the waters of the River Ganges on the eve of Shahi Snan (grand bathtub) on Maha Shivratri pageant in the direction of the ongoing spiritual Kumbh Mela pageant in Haridwar, India, on March 10 Prakash Singh/AFP/Getty Pictures

Huge crowds of Hindus began arriving in the northern Indian city of Haridwar on Thursday for the most challenging spiritual pilgrimage on Earth, even as experts warned it would situation off a surge in Covid-19 situations as the nation grapples with a second wave.

The months-long Kumbh Mela pageant, one of the critical Hindu celebrations, typically takes station each 12 years and attracts tens of millions of pilgrims to four rotating sites.

This year, it takes station in Haridwar, in the foothills of the outer Himalayas in Uttarakhand train, the build devotees encourage prayers, and wash their sins away in the sacred waters of the Ganges River. Basically basically basically based on some myths linked to the pageant, the river water turns into “amrita,” or the nectar of immortality, on explicit days.

Nevertheless this year, Covid-19 measures believe viewed the pageant postponed and then scaled encourage. The traditional launch date, called Makar Sankranti, turned into in January, however folks weren’t authorized to win holy baths in the river unless the govt’s formal originate in April.

Although authorities moved the launch date, and shortened the pilgrimage from three and a half months to merely one month, many folks believe chosen to ignore the first price guidelines, acknowledged Oommen Kurian, senior fellow and head of correctly being initiative at the Observer Overview Foundation in Recent Delhi.

Loads of of thousands of folks believe been flocking to Haridwar since Makar Sankranti in January anyway — congregating in close quarters for hours a day, sharing public facilities and having meals together. Pictures display masks folks washing their faces and taking corpulent physique dips into the sacred waters, then attending evening prayers by the banks of the river, lights candles and making spiritual choices.

Thursday noticed the first ceremonies and holy baths win station by the banks of the Ganges, with holy men conducting prayer rituals, acknowledged pageant officer Harbeer Singh. Non secular flags believe been hoisted ahead of their arrival, marking the formal launch of the celebrations.

Read the corpulent story:

Mass religious festival goes ahead in India despite Covid fears

17 hr 40 min ago

Queensland lifts lockdown early for Elevated Brisbane

From CNN’s Chandler Thornton

The govt of the Australian train of Queensland acknowledged a 3-day lockdown for Elevated Brisbane would stop a few hours early Wednesday, after the train reported only one original local Covid-19 case in a single day.

The snap lockdown turned into situation to stop at 5 p.m. Thursday however will be lifted at noon as a change to prepare for Easter weekend scramble, Queensland Mumble Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk acknowledged.

“Easter is suitable to head,” Palaszczuk acknowledged.

Some restrictions will live in station for Queensland unless April 15. Queenslanders must gentle elevate a cowl when leaving dwelling and build on masks in indoor locations and stop seated in pubs and consuming locations. Gatherings are restricted to 30 folks and dancing just isn’t allowed in public venues.

17 hr 45 min ago

US nursing properties behold a 96% decline in Covid-19 situations since vaccines rolled out in slack December

From CNN’s Jen Christensen

Executive Director Patricia Gustin greets residents entering the dining room at a nursing home in Anaheim, California, on March 8.
Govt Director Patricia Gustin greets residents coming into the eating room at a nursing dwelling in Anaheim, California, on March 8. Paul Bersebach/MediaNews Neighborhood/Orange County Register/Getty Pictures

Nursing properties believe viewed a 96% decline in original Covid-19 situations since vaccines began rolling out in slack December, in accordance with a original prognosis from the American Health Care Association and the National Heart for Assisted Living (AHCA/NCAL).

By March 7, the nation noticed the lowest number of weekly situations and deaths since Products and providers for Medicare & Medicaid Products and providers has been monitoring them, in accordance with the characterize published Tuesday. With 547 deaths the week of March 7, deaths believe been down 91% since December.

Since December, nursing dwelling situations believe been declining at a mighty faster price than neighborhood situations, the community’s prognosis confirmed.

“We’re not out of the woods but, however these numbers are incredibly encouraging and a critical morale booster for frontline caregivers who believe been working tirelessly for greater than a year to offer protection to our residents,” Fee Parkinson, president and CEO of AHCA/NCAL, acknowledged in an announcement. “This trend shows that after long timeframe care is prioritized, as with the national vaccine rollout, we can offer protection to our vulnerable elderly population.”

AHCA/NCAL represents greater than 14,000 nursing properties and long-timeframe care facilities round the nation. The facilities present devour about 5 million folks a year. 

17 hr 46 min ago

CDC warned the UK variant would change into dominant by March, and there’s proof it has

From CNN’s Michael Nedelman and Christopher Rios

People spend time in the sun near the Daytona Beach fishing pier in Florida, on March 24.
Folks exhaust time in the sun with reference to the Daytona Beach fishing pier in Florida, on March 24. Paul Hennessy/SOPA Pictures/Sipa USA

Mounting proof suggests the extra contagious coronavirus variant first diagnosed in the UK, which experts imagine is partly riding an uptick of situations in locations love Michigan, may per chance well per chance additionally merely already be dominant across the US.

“I mediate we’re there,” acknowledged William Lee, vp of science at Helix, an organization whose assessments believe diagnosed a trim half of variant situations across the nation. “Nevertheless at the stop of the day, or not it is tricky to dispute for distinct,” given gaps and delays in the information.

Lee is one of the authors of a contemplate published Tuesday in the journal Cell estimating that the variant, known as B.1.1.7, would situation off the majority of Covid-19 situations in the US by March 19. 

Basically basically basically based on that contemplate, B.1.1.7 situations are anticipated to double each week and a half as a share of the nation’s total coronavirus situations. The contemplate also concluded the variant turned into launched several diverse times to the US, as early as slack November. The contemplate’s conclusions believe been basically basically based on checking out information by blueprint of February.

Lee acknowledged that there’s strong proof the variant is already responsible for a majority of situations in states love Florida, Michigan and Georgia — with hundreds of others close on their heels, love Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Texas and Southern California. On the other hand, Helix’s information doesn’t consist of strong samples from hundreds of other states, particularly in the Northeast and Midwest regions.

While officers with the US Products and providers for Disease Control and Prevention won’t but mutter whether the variant is dominant, its scientists previously predicted this may per chance per chance be the case by now. 

In January, a CDC contemplate predicted that the variant would display masks “immediate improve in early 2021, turning into the predominant variant in March.” At the time, the variant turned into assumed to story for decrease than 0.5% of situations. 

Read the corpulent story:

Experts predicted the UK variant would become dominant in the US by March. So, is it?

The latest on the coronavirus pandemic and vaccines: Live updates – CNN