Covid pandemic — South Africa faces third wave, US inches closer to Biden’s vaccination goal

New Delhi: The coronavirus pandemic continues to devastate countries across the world with the latest count being more than 17 crore cases and over 35 lakh deaths worldwide.

The US inches closer to President Joe Biden’s vaccination goal, South Africa faces third Covid-19 wave and more.

ThePrint brings you some stories from around the world on the pandemic to keep you updated.

South Africa faces third Covid-19 wave, new restrictions in place
Fearing South Africa will soon face a third wave of Covid-19, President Cyril Ramaphosa reimposed stricter measures in the country, reports Al Jazeera.

Four provinces, including Gauteng which includes Johannesburg and Pretoria and has the biggest population, are already witnessing a third wave of infections, the president said Sunday.

The renewed restrictions will require restaurants, bars and fitness centres to close by 10 pm and a curfew will be in place between 11 pm and 4 am. Gatherings will also be limited to 250 people outdoors and 100 indoors.

Previously, two Covid waves occurred in the middle of 2020 and later in December and January when the emergence of a variant worsened the situation.

South Africa has recorded 16,59,070 cases and 56,363 deaths.

US inches closer to Biden’s 4 July vaccination goal

The US is getting closer to the goal set by US President Joe Biden to ensure 70 percent of the adult population gets at least one shot by the country’s Independence Day on 4 July, reports The New York Times.

So far, 62 per cent of adult Americans have got one shot.

According to the newspaper’s analysis, the biggest gains have been made in vaccinating 12- to 15-year-olds, who became eligible for shots earlier this month.

There has been progress in reaching groups with vaccine hesitancy like Latinos and people without college degrees, according to non-profit Kaiser Foundation.

The US has recorded 3,40,43,068 cases and 6,09,544 deaths.

UAE authorises use of antibody Sotrovimab for high-risk Covid patients
Health authorities in the UAE have authorised the use of Sotrovimab, an antibody medication to help keep high-risk Covid patients out of the hospital, reports Khaleej Times. The drug has been developed by GlaxoSmithKline and Vir Biotechnology Inc.

“Sotrovimab is a monoclonal antibody medication which is directed against the spike protein of Covid-19 virus. Spike protein is needed for the virus to enter the host cell. Sotrovimab attaches to the spike protein and neutralises the virus by preventing the entry of virus into the host cell,” said Dr Abhilash Ramachandran Nair, Specialist – Internal Medicine, Aster Hospital in Dubai.

According to Dr Suha Alhetary, General Practitioner, Medcare Medical Centre Al Barsha, recent trials of Sotrovimab have been found to neutralise variants reported in the UK, South Africa, Brazil, California, New York, and India.

The UAE has recorded 5,69,073 cases and 1,677 deaths.

Malaysia to enforce strict two-week lockdown starting on 1 June

In response to a rise in Covid-19 infections and deaths recorded over the past week, Malaysia will shutter most of its factories and shopping malls under a stringent two-week lockdown starting Tuesday, reports The Straits Times.

Senior Minister for Security Ismail Sabri Yaakob said on Sunday that only 17 essential sectors will be allowed to operate during the lockdown.

Under the new restrictions, people won’t be allowed to travel beyond a 10km radius of their homes and only two people per household will be allowed to venture out for essential items.

Only 17 essential sectors will be allowed to operate during the lockdown from 8 am to 8 pm, said Yaakob.

Source:-https://theprint.in/health/covid-pandemic-south-africa-faces-third-wave-us-inches-closer-to-bidens-vaccination-goal/668733/

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