Trump Touts Vaccine by October; U.K. Jobs Program: Virus Update
President Donald Trump said at a White House briefing Monday that a vaccine may be ready in October. Meanwhile, Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden said he wouldheed the advice of scientists about whether to get a coronavirus vaccine if one were to become available before November’s presidential election.
France reported more than 4,000 new coronavirus infections on Monday, with the average pace of daily cases over the past seven days continuing to climb. India, the world’s new Covid-19 epicenter,surpassed Brazil as the second-worst hit country.
The Bank of England’schief economist warned against extending a government program to retain employees during the pandemic and said that some jobs “may well not be coming back.”
- Global Tracker: Cases surpass 27.2 million; deaths exceed 890,000
- U.K. firms worry they can’t repay government-backed virus loans
- Skyrocketing India virus cases could eclipse U.S. outbreak
- Covid-19 patients may have prolonged gut infection, studyfinds
- Vaccine tracker: Where are we in the race for protection?
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South Korea Confirms 136 More Virus Cases (8:42 a.m. HK)
South Korea added 136more coronavirus cases in 24 hours compared with 119 a day earlier, according to data from Korea Centers for Disease Control & Prevention.
The number of confirmed cases remained below 200 for a sixth day. The total number of confirmed cases rose to 21,432.
Japan Considers Easing Restrictions on Event Sizes: Kyodo (8:38 a.m. HK)
The Japanese government is considering eliminating the cap of 5,000 people it has on event sizes as soon as Sept. 19 after determining that the coronavirus outbreak is easing, Kyodo reported, citing an unidentified official.
The government will continue to seek that capacity be limited at 50%, Kyodo reported, saying a final decision will be made at a meeting on Sept. 11. The restrictions were set to be in place through the end of September.
Singapore Bars 13,000 From Work Who Haven’t Undergone Testing (8:25 a.m. HK)
About 13,000 workers who haven’t undergone routine coronavirus testing as of Sept. 6 will be banned from returning to work to ensure the safety of other workers, the Singapore government said in a joint statement.
Since August, the Ministry of Manpower, Economic Development Board, Building and Construction Authority and Health Promotion Board have been reminding employers to schedule their workers for the test before Sept. 5 deadline.
China’s Sinovac Says Vaccine Candidate Appears Safe: Reuters (7:38 a.m. HK)
Sinovac Biotech said Monday that its coronavirusvaccine candidate appeared to be safe for older people according to preliminary results from an early to mid-stage trial, Reuters reported.
Immune responses triggered were slightly weaker than in younger adults. CoronaVac did not cause severe side effects in combined Phase 1 and Phase 2 trials launched in May involving 421 participants 60 and older, Sinovac’s media representative told Reuters.
South Korea May Ease Distancing Steps if Cases Fall: Maeil (7:32 a.m. HK)
South Korea’s government will consider easing social distancing measures if cases fall to a “double-digit” number by this weekend, Maeil Business Newspaper says, citing its TV unit interview with Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun.
Chung says he expects the number of daily virus cases to fall to a double-digit number this week, helped by stricter social distancing measures.
Netflix’s Hastings & Remote Work (2:02 p.m. NY)
Netflix co-CEO Reed Hastings said he doesn’t see any positives from working from home. In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, he said he expects the five-day work week will become four days in the office while one day is virtual from home.
Turkey Cases, Deaths at Highest Since May (1:39 p.m. NY)
Turkey reported 1,703 daily cases on Monday, while the death toll was 57. Both figures represent the highest levels seen since mid-May. Ankara, the capital, leads in the number of daily cases, Health Minister Fahrettin Koca said via Twitter.
France Cases Keep Climbing (1:05 p.m. NY)
France reported more than 4,000 new coronavirus infections on Monday, with the average pace of daily cases over the past seven days continuing to climb.
Laboratory-confirmed cases rose by 4,203 to 328,980, bringing the increase in infections in the past week to 47,955. The seven-day rolling average of new cases has been climbing steadily for three weeks to the highest since the start of the outbreak.
Ireland Monitors Spike in Cases (12:57 p.m. NY)
Irish health authorities are “monitoring with growing concern” increasing coronavirus cases in Dublin, the nation’s chief medical officer said, with the next seven days now “vital” to controlling the virus in Ireland’s capital. The warning comes two days after Ireland reported its most new cases since May.
Dublin accounted for 56 of 102 new cases reported Monday.
Spain Sees Drop in New Cases (12:35 p.m. NY)
Spain recorded 2,440 coronavirus infections in 24 hours, compared with 4,503 on Sept. 4, the Health Ministry said Monday.
The total number of infections reported Monday, which included adjustments for older cases, was 525,549, while 237 people died over the past seven days.
Review of WHO-Led Virus Response to Begin (11:56 a.m. NY)
The review committee will start evaluating the WHO-coordinated international health response to Covid-19 on Sept. 8, Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a briefing. It will recommend any changes it believes are necessary, and may present an interim report in November.
Separately, a number of studies are showing that the antibody response lasts and stays strong for a certain number of months — though it’s not known how long that robust immune response lasts because the pandemic has only been going on for eight months, according to Maria Van Kerkhove, the group’s technical lead officer on Covid-19.
EU Nears Vaccine-Supply Deal with BioNTech (11:51 a.m. NY)
The European Commission said it is close to reaching an agreement with BioNTech SE on the supply of any successful Covid-19 vaccine. “We are almost there,” Sandra Gallina, a senior health official at the commission, the 27-nation European Union’s executive arm, told a European Parliament committee on Monday in Brussels.
Gallina also said the EU expects to receive some doses by the end of the year, citing vaccines being developed by AstraZeneca Plc, Moderna Inc. and BioNTech.
U.K. Has ‘Concerning’ Rise in Cases (11:25 a.m. NY)
An additional 2,948 cases of coronavirus were recorded in the U.K. on Monday, the second day in a row that nearly 3,000 cases were added.
Earlier on Monday, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said the “concerning” rise in cases was a result of young people breaking social-distancing rules.
Trump Sees Vaccines Coming Fast, U.S. Doing Well (10:08 a.m. NY)
U.S. President Donald Trump says “starting to get VERY high marks in our handling of the Coronavirus (China Virus), especially when compared to other countries and areas of the world,” in a Tweet.
Denmark Resumes Some Covid Restrictions (8:23 a.m NY)
Denmark is re-introducing a number of coronavirus-related restrictions following the worst spike in infections since the height of the pandemic.
The limit on public gatherings is reduced to 50, from 100, while bars and restaurants will have to shut by midnight, Danish Health Minister Magnus Heunicke said. The announcement follows more than 1,000 new reported cases in the Nordic country over the past week. The new infections appear to affect mostly young people in their 20s, officials said.
Virus Patients May Have Prolonged Gut Infection (6:32 p.m. NY)
Covid-19 patients haveactive and prolonged gut viral infection, even in the absence of gastrointestinal symptoms, scientists in Hong Kong showed. The coronavirus may continue to infect and replicate in the digestive tract after clearing in the airways, researchers at the Chinese University of Hong Kong said in a statement Monday. The findings, published in the medical journal GUT, have implications for identifying and treating cases, they said.
U.K. Seeks to Avoid National Lockdown (4:30 p.m. HK)
The U.K. is seeking to avoid national lockdown “at all costs,” Environment Secretary George Eustice told Sky News on Monday after the country reported almost 3,000 new coronavirus cases on Sunday, the highest since May. While he wouldn’t rule another lockdown, he said the emphasis now is on testing and tracing contacts of positive cases, and responding to flare-ups with localized measures.
— With assistance by Jodi Schneider
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