Coronavirus live updates | Tokyo Olympics should not be judged by the tally of COVID-19 cases, says WHO chief

The Prime Minister on July 20, 2021, stressed the need to properly plan the vaccination drives at the district level based on the advance availability indicated by the Central government to ensure no inconvenience to the people

According to a detailed presentation by Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan and he informed that as of date, only 8 States have more than 10,000 cases with majority of caseload in Maharashtra and Kerala. Just five States have a positivity rate more than 10%.

“India had augmented its drug availability throughout the pandemic. CDSCO permitted the increase in number of Remdesivir manufacturing sites from 22 in March to 62 in June which increased the production capacity from 38 to 122 lakh vials per month. Similarly, import of Liposomal Amphotericin was encouraged which saw the cumulative allocation rise from just 45,050 to 14.81 lakh,” said a release on the Health Ministry’s presentation.

You can track coronavirus cases, deaths and testing rates at the national and State levels here. A list of State Helpline numbers is available as well.

Here are the latest updates:

COVID-19 has not defeated Games: WHO head

The Tokyo Olympics should not be judged by the tally of COVID-19 cases that arise because eliminating risk is impossible, the head of the World Health Organisation told sports officials Wednesday as events began in Japan.

How infections are handled is what matters most, WHO director general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a speech to an International Olympic Committee meeting. "The mark of success is making sure that any cases are identified, isolated, traced and cared for as quickly as possible and onward transmission is interrupted," he said.

The number of Games-linked COVID-19 cases in Japan this month was 79 on Wednesday, with more international athletes testing positive at home and unable to travel.

"The mark of success in the coming fortnight is not zero cases," Mr. Tedros said, noting the athletes who already tested positive in Japan, including at the athletes village in Tokyo Bay, where most of the 11,000 competitors will stay.

Teammates classed as close contacts of infected athletes can continue training and preparing for events under a regime of isolation and extra monitoring. Health experts in Japan have warned of the Olympics becoming a “super-spreader” event bringing tens of thousands of athletes, officials and workers during a local state of emergency.

Mr. Tedros praised both the Tokyo Organising Committee and the Japanese government for their precautions and sacrifices ahead of the Games.

"Although COVID-19 might have postponed the Games, it has not defeated them," he said.

Government funding work on four new vaccine candidates

The Centre is funding the development of four vaccines, which are currently in various stages of human trials. One more vaccine is in a preclinical stage, Science Minister Jitendra Singh said in a written reply to Rajya Sabha on Tuesday.

The government has also funded clinical trial sites, animal challenge facilities (where viruses are tested on animals) and immunoassay laboratories, all of which were collectively allotted a budget of ₹900 crore for 12 months, the Minister said.

Read more 

Nearly 44,000 pregnant, 66,000 lactating women inoculated

COVID-19 vaccination of pregnant and lactating women is in progress throughout the State. So far, nearly 44,000 pregnant women and 66,000 lactating women have been inoculated.

According to data from the Directorate of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, 43,855 pregnant women received their COVID-19 vaccines up to July 18 in the State. Among them, 43,796 were administered their first dose and 59 women, who had received their first dose when they were not pregnant, received their due second dose after becoming pregnant.

Read more 

Centre seeks more time to frame uniform ex gratia guidelines

The Centre has approached the Supreme Court to allow the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA) more time to frame uniform guidelines for payment of ex gratia assistance to families of persons who died of COVID-19. The government has asked for a month more. A June 30 judgment of the Supreme Court had given the NDMA six weeks to submit its guidelines.

The government said ‘accelerated’ formulation of guidelines would lead to “undesirable results”. The court said the work on the recommendations was at an advanced stage.

Read more 

Health officials point out politicians’ reckless behaviour

On several instances, people have frowned at the sight of politicians cheering through crowd not wearing masks, not maintaining physical distancing between them and others. In a rare instance, the irresponsible behaviour of politicians was pointed out by Telangana Health department officials.

Pointing out that padayatras (foot march), rallies, and other political activities have increased in Telangana from the past few days, the State’s Director of Public Health (DPH) Dr G Srinivasa Rao said that politicians and cadre did not follow COVID-19 precautions.

Read more 

Punjab flags urgent demand for 40 lakh vaccine doses

Citing a current demand of more than 2 lakh COVID vaccine doses for the second dose alone, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on July 20, 2021, demanded 40 lakh more doses from the Centre on urgent basis to inoculate the State’s eligible population.

The State was expecting 2.46 lakhs vaccines to arrive on Tuesday but the Chief Minister, during a COVID review virtual meeting, noted that the vaccine remains in short supply. The State has run out of Covishield and is left with a mere 3,500 Covaxin doses as of July 19, he said.

Read more 

(With inputs from our Correspondents and agencies)

Source: Read Full Article