The director of the World Health Organization in Africa said Thursday that vaccinations against the Covid-19 virus in Africa has tripled over the past week, although protecting up to 10 percent of the continent by the end of September remains a “very arduous task”.
Meanwhile, the continent saw 248,000 new confirmed cases over the past week, with at least 24 countries seeing a spike in infections due to the delta variant.
“This is a tragedy that can be avoided if African countries can get equitable access to vaccines,” Machidiso Moeti told reporters.
The World Health Organization’s Africa director said 13 million doses were given in the past week, three times more than the number of doses given the previous week as dose donations from developed countries increased. But that’s still a drop in an ocean on the continent home to 1.3 billion people, with Africa’s CDC saying only 2.4 percent are currently vaccinated.
The brutal re-emergence of Africa, driven by the delta variant, is further expanding already stressed health systems across the continent. While African countries struggle, the United States and other high-income countries are talking about booster injections.
WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus recently said it was “inconceivable” that some countries are now providing booster doses “while so many people remain unprotected.”
–From The Associated Press, last updated at 8:15 p.m. ET
What’s happening all over Canada
What is happening around the world
As of Thursday evening, more than 214.4 million cases of COVID-19 have been reported worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University’s COVID-19 tracking tool. The reported global death toll has reached more than 4.4 million.
in a EuropeOn Thursday, Russia recorded a one-day record of 820 deaths from the coronavirus. The National Coronavirus Task Force says the number of new daily infections has reached 19,630. This comes after a steady decline since the beginning of the month when 22,800 cases were reported.
Travel procedures for England and Scotland were revised Thursday, with restrictions easing for passengers from Canada, Denmark and Switzerland.
In Denmark, Health Minister Magnus Heunick said 80 per cent of people over the age of 12 have been vaccinated. He called it “a great new vaccine milestone.”
Workers in public hospitals in Greece on Thursday called off a five-hour strike to protest against a government decision to vaccinate against the mandatory COVID-19 for all healthcare workers in the public and private sectors. About 300 hospital workers rallied outside the Ministry of Health in Athens to protest against the measure, which takes effect on September 1.
In France, Prime Minister Jean Castix announced plans to give COVID-19 booster doses to people over 65 and those living in nursing homes from next month.
In the Middle east, Iranian health officials reported an additional 665 deaths on Wednesday, a day after reporting a record 709 COVID-19-related deaths within 24 hours.
In the AmericasGeneral Motors said Thursday that it will require all US salaried employees to report whether they have received COVID-19 vaccinations.
In Alabama, the state is seeing a sharp increase in COVID-19 cases in school-age children, with more than 5,000 cases reported last week — likely fueled by the delta variant and causing some schools to temporarily switch to distance learning, officials say.
In Arkansas, the state medical board is investigating reports that county jail inmates have been prescribed the anti-parasitic drug ivermectin to combat COVID-19 even though it has not been approved to treat the coronavirus.
In Illinois, health care workers and teachers from kindergarten through college will be required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 or undergo weekly testing, Governor JB Pritzker said Thursday, announcing new safety protocols that also include a new statewide authorization for masks to be made. worn indoors.
In New Mexico, top health officials have warned that the state is about a week away from having to legalize Medicare as coronavirus infections continue to rise.
COVID-19 update today: 770 new cases today, 5 deaths and 433 in hospital. Get vaccinated against the virus and stay masked to prevent more new cases. More details from today’s report at https://t.co/VlCApRsSc7 pic.twitter.com/bwfa7VMXlh
In the Asia Pacific In the region, Moderna said it withheld the supply of about 1.63 million doses of its COVID-19 vaccine in Japan after a report of particulate contamination of vials, which it suspects involved a production line in Spain.
New Zealand has reported 68 new community cases of coronavirus, the largest daily increase since April last year as the delta-variable outbreak continues. The government put the country on strict lockdown last week in an effort to stem the outbreak, which has grown to a total of 277 infections.
— From The Associated Press, Reuters, and CBC News, last updated at 8:30 p.m. ET