CDC Eases School Guidance; Global Trend Worsens: Virus Update

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(Bloomberg) — The U. This may interest you : EU backs Eurodrone and SDR project with €137m.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is giving schools more flexibility to decide how to safely keep kids in kindergarten through 12th-grade classrooms while guarding against the further spread of Covid-19.

Infections are rising across most regions of the world as the delta variant spreads, the World Health Organization’s chief scientist said. The reproduction rate in England has risen to the highest levels since October.

South Africa’s council on the coronavirus will meet as a third viral wave batters the country. In Canada, Ontario residents could see the vast majority of restrictions lifted in August, allowing them to finish the summer in near pre-pandemic conditions.

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Key Developments:

Global Tracker: Cases top 185.7 million; deaths exceed 4 millionVaccine Tracker: More than 3.35 billion doses administeredMexico’s California is more vaccinated than U.S.’s CaliforniaFrom alpha to delta, why virus mutations cause alarm: QuickTakePfizer Inc. outlined plans for a third booster dose of its vaccineThe pandemic isn’t slowing down, WHO chief scientist warns

Ontario Could Lift Curbs in August (1 p.m. NY)

Ontario residents could see the vast majority of Covid-19 restrictions lifted in August, allowing them to finish the summer in near pre-pandemic conditions.

On Friday, Canada’s most populous province announced it was moving into Step Three of its reopening plan sooner than expected, as vaccination rates continue to exceed targets.

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“While this is exciting news, we must still remain vigilant and continue to follow the public health measures we know work and keep us safe,” Christine Elliott, deputy premier and minister of health, said in a written statement. “Vaccines remain our ticket out of the pandemic.”

Portugal Donates Vaccines (12:50 p.m. NY)

Portugal will deliver 12,000 doses of vaccine on Saturday to the African island nation of Sao Tome and Principe, the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

The move is part of Portugal’s commitment to provide 5% of its vaccines to Portuguese-speaking countries in Africa and to East Timor, the ministry said.

Russia Raises May Death Toll (12:06 p.m. NY)

Russia’s death toll from Covid-19 in May grew to 18,695, up 65% from initial official reports, even before a new wave of infections pushed fatalities to a record high this week.

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May’s total was down 9% from the revised April figure of 20,650. Russia publishes daily death figures and then updates the monthly total when the Federal Statistics Service releases its own data weeks later.

Total fatalities in Russia linked to the epidemic rose to nearly 290,000 through May.

CDC Eases School Guidance (11:15 a.m. NY)

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has updated its Covid-19 guidance for kindergarten through high school, providing flexibility for local decision makers to determine what’s needed to safely keep kids in the classroom.

With the delta variant dominant in the U.S. and just half of adults fully vaccinated, there are concerns about a potential Covid surge in under-vaccinated areas, including among school children. Meanwhile, regions with high inoculation rates and low infections may want to choose lesser levels of protection, said Erin Sauber-Schatz, who leads the CDC’s Community Intervention and Critical Population Task Force.

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The updated guidance continues to highlight distancing where possible, screening, mask use, ventilation and hand-washing. The new part: If localities decide not to use these strategies based on local conditions, they should be stopped one at a time, the guidance suggests, with ongoing monitoring for any rise in cases.

U.K. Cases Surge (9:26 a.m. NY)

U.K. cases surged, presenting Prime Minister Boris Johnson with more worrying data about the fast-spreading delta variant of the virus ahead of a planned easing of restrictions on July 19.

The reproduction rate of the virus in England has risen to levels last seen in October, the government said Friday. Cases of the delta variant, which now accounts for 99% of U.K. infections, rose by almost a third in the past week to 216,249 cases, data from Public Health England showed.

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Pandemic Not Slowing Down (8:59 a.m. NY)

Coronavirus infections are rising across most regions of the world as the delta variant spreads, clear evidence that the pandemic isn’t on the wane, according to the World Health Organization’s chief scientist.

While vaccination levels in some countries are reducing severe cases and hospitalizations, large parts of the world face oxygen shortages, a lack of hospital beds and higher mortality, the WHO’s Soumya Swaminathan said in an interview with Bloomberg Television.

Spain on German Risk List (8:28 a.m. NY)

Germany reclassified Spain as an area of risk after infections surged, raising the alarm about a country that’s among the most popular destinations for German tourists.

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The ranking, which is Germany’s third highest, includes the Balearic and Canary Islands. But it has little practical impact, as quarantine can be avoided by travelers returning to Germany as long as they have proof of full vaccination or recovery from Covid-19, or can provide a negative test.

South Africa Virus Council to Meet (7:46 a.m.)

South Africa’s National Coronavirus Command Council will meet on July 11 to assess the country’s response to the pandemic and whether current restrictions aimed at curbing its spread are appropriate.

The meeting comes two weeks after President Cyril Ramaphosa placed the country on virus alert level 4, shutting schools and banning alcohol sales and all public gathering other than funerals.

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The mayor of Johannesburg, Geoff Makhubo, died after contracting Covid-19. Makhubo was hospitalized after becoming infected with Covid-19 and succumbed to the disease on Friday, the city said.

EMA Issues Safety Advice (7:15 a.m. NY)

The European Medicines Agency’s safety committee (PRAC) recommended that people who have previously had capillary leak syndrome must not be vaccinated with J&J’s Covid-19 vaccine.

The committee also noted “very rare” heart inflammation risk following vaccination with the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna Covid-19 vaccines.

Record Malaysia Cases (7:11 a.m. NY)

Malaysia reported the biggest single-day increase in new coronavirus cases since the outbreak began, even as authorities impose tighter movement restrictions in several areas to curb infections.

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England’s Covid Rate Rises (7:10 a.m NY)

One in 160 people in England are infected with Covid-19, rising from 1 in 260 in the previous week, the Office for National Statistics said.

An estimated 332,900 people within the country’s community population had the disease in the week to July 3.

Indonesia Extends Curbs (6:34 a.m. NY)

Indonesia will extend tighter movement limits to islands beyond Java and Bali, as infections driven by the delta variant pick up across the country.

Britons Value Masks (5:58 a.m. NY)

The British public continues to see value in the current health measures to slow the spread of Covid-19 as the government prepares to end compulsory face coverings and social distancing on July 19.

Mask wearing is believed by 91% of adults to be important to tackling the disease, according to Office of National Statistics figures. Social distancing was ranked important by 87%.

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Thailand Tightens Curbs (5:05 p.m. HK)

Thailand announced a set of tighter virus containment measures, including a ban on gatherings of more than five people, closing of spas and beauty clinics and reducing the operational hours for some businesses to quell a worsening Covid outbreak in its capital and nearby provinces.

France Backtracks on Warning (3:50 p.m. HK)

France’s government attempted to calm fears about holidaying in Spain and Portugal, backtracking on a minister’s warning on Thursday about the rapid spread of the delta variant of Covid-19.

“Citizens who have booked holidays in Spain, Portugal or elsewhere shouldn’t panic,” Health Minister Olivier Veran said in a France Inter radio interview.

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Singapore Reports One New Case (3:42 p.m. HK)

Singapore authorities preliminarily confirmed just one new case of locally transmitted Covid-19 infection, according to the Health Ministry on Friday. The case is currently unlinked.

Singapore plans to further relax virus curbs with larger group sizes allowed at restaurants from July 12, while it works toward a more expansive easing.

Uganda’s $1.1 Billion Plan (3:15 p.m. HK)

Uganda will spend 4 trillion shillings ($1.1 billion) to battle the coronavirus pandemic in a three-year plan that involves vaccinating 22 million people before fully reopening the economy.

Philippines Lets Children Go Out (2:25 p.m. HK)

The Philippines has allowed minors aged at least 5 years old to go outdoors, easing one of the world’s strictest pandemic restrictions on kids after keeping them at home for more than a year.

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Children in areas under the two loosest quarantine levels can now go to parks, playgrounds, outdoor restaurants and tourist sites, presidential spokesman Harry Roque said in a statement Friday. Still, they are banned from going to malls, he said.

India Approves Response Fund (2 p.m. HK)

India approved a 230 billion rupees ($2.3 billion) fund, just a day after a top-level reshuffle, to strengthen the country’s response to the second wave and the evolving pandemic.

The nation added 43,393 Covid-19 cases Friday, taking the total tally to 30.75 million. Covid-related casualties rose by 911 in a day to 405,939, according to data from the Indian health ministry. It has administered 369 million vaccine doses so far but only 5% of its population is fully inoculated, according to Bloomberg’s vaccine tracker.

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Countries Pitch in for Indonesia (12:35 p.m. HK)

Indonesia is receiving help from other countries in meeting a shortfall in oxygen supply as it battles a virus resurgence that has crippled its health system.

Singapore will supply hundreds of ventilators and cylinders, along with other medical supplies, while Australia is set to send 1,000 ventilators arriving Friday, according to a statement from the Coordinating Ministry for Maritime and Investment Affairs. United Arab Emirates will send aid next week, including 250,000 doses of Sinopharm Group Co.’s vaccine.

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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