Coronavirus Morning Roundup – Oct 26: Biden tells businesses to improve indoor air quality to fight virus, new Covid vaccine can be inhaled

Texas State Capitol Building in Austin

Good morning. This is Jonathan Spira’s report. Here now the news of the pandemic from around the world on the 930th day of the pandemic.

The United States is in a better position regarding the coronavirus pandemic than it has been in the past two years, but no one in the federal government is taking any chances.

President Joseph Biden, who received his bivalent booster shot Tuesday, is working to convince Americans, especially the most vulnerable among the population, such as the elderly and the immunocompromised, to roll up their sleeves. He is also implementing a program for Walgreens, DoorDash and Uber to provide free delivery of antiviral prescriptions when someone tests positive for the virus.

“As a country… we have to make a decision,” Biden said, before being vaccinated. He warned that if we repeat the mistakes of the past two winters, the country will see “more infections, more hospitalizations, more loved ones getting sick, even dying, from the virus. Or we can have a much better winter, if we use all, all the tools that we have available now.” New tools include reformulated booster injections and antiviral pills like Paxlovid and molnupiravir.

As part of the campaign to reduce the impact of the coronavirus in the coming months, the administration is encouraging businesses to improve indoor air quality, an often-overlooked way to fight airborne viruses. air, such as SARS-CoV-2, and establish vaccination clinics. in the place. The president is also asking companies to give employees paid time off to be prodded.

Taking steps to address ventilation in offices and warehouses is the only new tactic, however the others are recycled versions of previous tactics. Whether this will be enough, only time will tell.

In other news we cover today, a new vaccine being distributed in China can be inhaled through the mouth, Long Covid can cause blood clots, and Hong Kong moved to nullify 20,000 bogus vaccine exemption certificates.

LONG COVID

Apparently, the list of ailments that SARS-CoV-2 can cause is getting longer. A new study shows that people who had been diagnosed with the virus, but were not hospitalized, still had three times the risk of venous thromboembolism (blood clots in the veins that can include deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism) in comparison with similar people who had not been hospitalized. I did not have Covid. The researchers, whose study was published in the British medical journal Heart, used the health records of 20,000 people to formulate their conclusions.

UNITED STATES

Two studies indicate that the new Covid-19 bivalent booster appears to work as well against the BA.4 and BA.5 Omicron sub-variants as the original boosters they replaced. The two studies are from research teams at Harvard and Columbia universities.

Meanwhile, the BA.5 strain remains dominant in the country, accounting for 62.5% of cases, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. BA.6 cases represented 11.4%. However, the new sublineages are catching up. The BQ.1 variant represented 9.4%; BA.1. is at 17.2%; the BF.7 6.7%; BA.2.75 1.6%, and BA.2.75.1 1.3%.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott has extended the state’s pandemic state of emergency, albeit with a nefarious goal.

“Ending the COVID disaster declaration would allow local governments to once again enforce occupancy limits, mask mandates and vaccine mandates,” said Renae Eze, a spokeswoman for Abbott.

Finally, in New York City, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority is reopening some subway restrooms for the first time since the start of the pandemic. The city has a total of 472 metro stations and 69 have toilets. Eight of them will reopen in January after hiring new workers to clean them.

GLOBAL

China has begun distributing a coronavirus vaccine that is inhaled through the mouth. The hope is that a needle-free vaccine will convince people who don’t like injections to get vaccinated against the virus. They can also be used to expand vaccination in poor countries because they are easier to administer.

In Beijing, Universal Resort temporarily closed due to coronavirus prevention measures. The move was announced on the park’s social media account on Wednesday.

Finally, in Hong Kong, the government moved to invalidate more than 20,000 coronavirus exemption certificates issued by doctors suspected of providing false certificates. On Wednesday, the city-state’s parliament gave the government’s health minister the power to take such action.

TODAY’S STATISTICS

Now here are the daily stats for Wednesday, October 26.

As of Wednesday morning, the world has recorded 633.5 million cases of covid-19, an increase of 0.5 million cases and 6.6 million deaths, according to Worldometer, a service that tracks such information. Additionally, 612.9 million people worldwide have recovered from the virus, an increase of 0.5 million.

Worldwide, the number of active coronavirus cases as of Wednesday at press time is 14,394,166, an increase of 56,000. Of that number, 99.7%, or 14,357,966, are considered mild and 0.3%, or 36,200, are classified as critical. The percentage of cases considered critical has not changed in the last 24 hours.

The United States reported 25,656 new coronavirus infections on Wednesday compared to the previous day, compared to 38,763 on Tuesday, 6,975 on Monday, 2,576 on Sunday, 33,923 on Saturday and 63,637 on Friday, according to data from the Department of Health and Services. US Humans. The 7-day incidence rate is now 33,905. Weekend numbers (reported the next day) are typically 30% to 60% of those posted on weekdays due to less testing being done.

The daily average of new coronavirus cases in the United States over the past 14 days is 37,792, a decrease of 4%, according to data from the Department of Health and Human Services, among other sources. The average number of daily deaths during the same period is 357, a decrease of 7% over the same period, while the average number of hospitalizations for the period was 26,681, a decrease of 1%.

In addition, since the start of the pandemic, the United States has registered, as of Wednesday, more than 99.1 million cases, a higher figure than any other country, and a death toll of 1.1 million. India has the world’s second-highest number of officially recorded cases, more than 44.6 million, and a reported death toll of 528,981.

The most recent data from Russia’s state statistics service Rosstat showed that as of the end of July, the number of covid or covid-related deaths since the start of the pandemic there in April 2020 is now 823,623, giving the country the second highest pandemic in the world. number of related deaths, behind the United States. Rosstat reported that 3,284 people died from the coronavirus or related causes in July, up from 5,023 in June, 7,008 in May and 11,583 in April.

Meanwhile, France is the third country with the highest number of cases, with more than 36.6 million, and Germany is at number four, with 35.4 million total cases.

Brazil, which has recorded the third-highest number of deaths from the virus, 687,987, has recorded more than 34.8 million cases, putting it at number five.

The other five countries with total case figures above 20 million are South Korea, with 25.4 million cases, the United Kingdom, with 23.9 million cases, placing it at number seven, and Italy, with 23.4 million, at number eight. as well as Japan, with 22.1 million, and Russia, with 21.4 million.

FOCUS ON VACCINATION

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that, as of last Thursday, more than 265.6 million people in the United States, or 80%, have received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine. Of that population, 68.2%, or 226.6 million people, have received two doses of the vaccine, and the total number of doses that have been dispensed in the United States is now 632.9 million. Breaking this down further, 91% of the population over the age of 18, or 234.9 million people, have received at least one first inoculation and 78% of the same group, or 201.4 million people, are fully vaccinated. . In addition, 52.3% of that population, or 105.3 million people, have already received a first booster dose of the vaccine.

Beginning June 13, 2022, the CDC began updating vaccine data weekly and released the updated information on Wednesday at 8 p.m. EDT, according to a statement on the agency’s website.

About 68.4% of the world’s population has received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine as of Wednesday, according to Our World in Data, an online scientific publication that tracks such information. So far, 12.87 billion doses of the vaccine have been administered globally and 2.03 million doses are now administered per day.

Meanwhile, only 23.3% of people in low-income countries have received a dose, while in countries such as Canada, China, Denmark, France, Italy, the United Kingdom and the United States, at least 75% of the population has received at least one dose of vaccine.

Only a handful of the world’s poorest countries (Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia and Nepal) have reached the 70% vaccination mark. However, many countries are below 20%, and in countries like Haiti, Senegal and Tanzania, for example, vaccination rates remain at or below 10%.

Furthermore, with the start of vaccinations in North Korea at the end of September, Eritrea remains the only country in the world that has not administered vaccinations.

Anna Breuer contributed reporting to this story.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

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