Covid-19

Regional News • Europe • Germany
Germany: 16,282 Coronavirus cases, daily record
Germany: 16,282 Coronavirus cases, daily record
Credit: Courtesy of Risklayer

Germany has reported 16,282 new Coronavirus cases in the past 24 hours. This is the country's highest daily case count. Death toll rose by 97. The data comes directly from the regional health authorities and has been aggregated by risklayer.

Previously the highest recorded number of new cases had been 14,964.

Regional News • Americas • United States
US reports half a million Covid-19 cases in the past week
US reports half a million Covid-19 cases in the past week
Credit: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

The United States have reported over half a million Covid-19 cases over the past week, as much as the country recorded in the first three months of the pandemic (January 21 to April 11). While many states resort to stricter Covid-19 measures, the Trump administration has released its first-term scientific accomplishments which included the line “ENDING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC” written in bold, capital letters.

Health
First coronavirus vaccines 'may not prevent infection', UK task force head warns
First coronavirus vaccines 'may not prevent infection', UK task force head warns
Credit: unsplash.com / National Cancer Institute

Kate Bingham, the chair of the UK's vaccine task force, has warned that a first-gen Covid-19 vaccine "is likely to be imperfect" and "may not prevent infection."

"The Vaccine Taskforce aims to ensure that the UK population has access to vaccines as soon as possible, while working with partners to support equitable access for populations worldwide, whether rich or poor," Bingham wrote on The Lancet. "However, we do not know that we will ever have a vaccine at all. It is important to guard against complacency and over-optimism. The first generation of vaccines is likely to be imperfect, and we should be prepared that they might not prevent infection but rather reduce symptoms, and, even then, might not work for everyone or for long."

Regional News • Europe • France
Macron orders France into second national Covid-19 lockdown
French President Emmanuel Macron
French President Emmanuel Macron Credit: Twitter Reproduction

"Hospitals won’t manage if we don’t take drastic measures,” said French President Emmanuel Macron in a prime-time televised address Wednesday, when he announced new lockdown measures for France.

Macron said that under the new measures, starting on Friday, people would only be allowed to leave home for essential work or medical reasons, that EU borders would still be open. Still, travel between regions in the country is banned.

The French government had been loath to impose a new lockdown that will pummel the economy even harder, and business chiefs have warned a total shutdown will force another wave of layoffs and bankruptcies.

Governments across Europe have been under fire for lack of coordination and for failing to use a lull in cases over the summer to bolster defences, leaving hospitals unprepared and forcing people on to packed public transport to get to work.

Regional News • Europe • Germany
Germany decides on extended restrictions from Monday on due to rising Covid-19 numbers
Germany decides on extended restrictions from Monday on due to rising Covid-19 numbers
Credit: Screenshot live stream Bundespressekonferenz

The German federal and state governments agreed on extended restrictions following a rise in Covid-19 cases. The restrictions will take effect in all of Germany from next Monday on and last for four weeks.

Only members of two households - a maximum of ten people - will be allowed to meet in public. "Groups of people celebrating in public places, homes and private institutions are unacceptable in view of the seriousness of the situation in our country", the decision states. Schools and shops will remain open, restaurants and other activities for personal entertainment or leisure will be forced to close.

Regional News • Europe
Poland: 18,820 new Coronavirus cases, daily record
Poland: 18,820 new Coronavirus cases, daily record
Credit: Silar, via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

Poland reported 18,820 new Coronavirus cases. This is the country's highest daily case count. 236 people died in the past 24 hours. 13,931 hospital beds are occupied by Coronavirus patients and 1,150 ventilators are in use.

Regional News • Europe • France
PM Castex: French hospitals at capacity by Nov 11th
André Chassaigne
André Chassaigne Credit: André Chassaigne

The ICU of French hospitals will be at capacity levels with Coronavirus patients by November 11th, assuming the current surge in cases can't be contained.

Lawmaker André Chassaigne told reporters: "He [PM Jean Castex] told us that on 11 November, our hospitals will be at a saturation level equivalent to that of the first wave, so a level of extreme saturation. So the situation is particularly serious. If we can’t flatten the curve, in the next 15 days, our hospitals won’t be able to treat patients."

No measures were discussed.

Arts, Entertainment, Culture • Literature
After Strand Bookstore asked for help, online orders surged
After Strand Bookstore asked for help, online orders surged
Credit: Ajay Suresh from New York, NY, USA, via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

Strand Bookstore, one of New York's oldest bookstores, recently asked its customers for help on social media after sales have gone down during the pandemic, writing "for the first time in The Strand’s 93 year history, we need to mobilize the community to buy from us so we can keep our doors open until there is a vaccine."

After Strand's call for help, the store received over 25,000 online orders over the weekend and made a total of $170,550 in in-store sales on Saturday and Sunday.

Regional News • Europe
Slovakia to test almost entire population for Covid-19
Slovakia to test almost entire population for Covid-19
Credit: unsplash.com / chloe

Slovakia has started mass testing its entire population for Covid-19, the first country to do so. During a trial phase on the weekend of October 23-25, a total of 140,945 people participated and 5,594 infectious cases were detected, defence ministry spokeswoman Martina Koval Kakascikova said.

Regional News • Europe
Italy: Protests against Coronavirus measures

Following new Coronavirus restrictions, protests broke out across Italy on Monday. Clashes involving petrol bombs happened in both Milan and Turin. In Naples, protestors called for the resignation of its governor. Italy has imposed a curfew in many Italian regions and has ordered the closure of eateries, gyms and cinemas after 6pm.

Health
Over 43m Covid-19 cases and over 1m deaths globally

There have been more than 43 million confirmed Covid-19 infections and over 1,15 million deaths since the start of the pandemic, according to data of the Johns Hopkin's University.

Regional News • Europe • Austria
Austrian chancellor considers second lockdown as a measure of last resort
Austrian chancellor considers second lockdown as a measure of last resort
Credit: Bundesministerium für Finanzen, via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

Austrian chancellor Sebastian Kurz has stated that he considered a second lockdown as a measure of last resort to contain the further spread of Covid-19 and prevent hospitals reaching capacity.

"We have a massively increasing, exponential growth. It is an extreme challenge. The situation is very, very serious, even for those who still refuse to believe it," so Kurz.

Regional News • Europe • Germany
Merkel warns that Germany is "on the verge of losing control of virus"
Merkel warns that Germany is "on the verge of losing control of virus"
Credit: FinnishGovernment, via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

German chancellor Angela Merkel has warned that Germany is "on the verge of losing control of its fight against the virus", telling her party in an internal meeting that "the situation is threatening" and that the country has "very, very difficult months ahead."

Germany has seen a steady increase of Covid-19 cases of the past weeks, reporting over 14,000 cases on October 24, the country's highest daily case count.

Regional News • Americas • United States
At least five of VP Pence's aides test positive for Covid-19
At least five of VP Pence's aides test positive for Covid-19
Credit: The White House, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

At least five of Vice President Pence's aides have tested positive for Covid-19, including his chief of staff Marc Short, aide Zach Bacher and adviser Marty Obst. According to Pence's spokesman Devin O'Malley, Pence was in close contact with Short but won't quarantine as he tested negative and is considered "essential personnel."

Regional News • Europe
Swiss warns that intensive care capacity is close to overload

The chief of Switzerland's Covid-19 taskforce, Martin Ackermann, has told reports that "We estimate that the capacity limit in intensive care in hospitals will be reached between November 5-18 if nothing changes from the current situation". Previously a new record of 6,634 Covid-19 cases had been recorded.

Regional News • Americas • South America
Referendum in Chile starts to determine the possible change of constitution
Referendum in Chile starts to determine the possible change of constitution
Credit: unsplash.com / Loïc Mermilliod

The polls opened in Chile this Sunday for a historic referendum on whether the country's constitution, which comes from the era of dictator Augusto Pinochet, will be discarded and replaced by a new charter to be formulated, one of the main demands of the protests that took over the country last year.

More than 14.8 million people can vote in 2,715 locations across the country, although those suffering from Covid-19 have been warned to stay away under threat of arrest.

Regional News • Europe • Germany
Police prohibit demo but do not break it up
Archive image from "hygiene demonstration" 29.08.2020 in Berlin
Archive image from "hygiene demonstration" 29.08.2020 in Berlin Credit: Thomas Neugerriemschneider / Wikimedia Commons

The police spoke of about 2000 people who gathered on Alexanderplatz in the Mitte district to protest the Covid-19 measures in Germany. Many of them ignored the required social distancing and mask rules. The police let most of the participants walk the planned demo route along Karl-Marx-Allee without being disturbed, even though these people violated the conditions of the demonstration.

At about 4 p.m. the demonstration was ended by the organizers, as the Berlin police announced on Twitter.

Regional News • Europe
Covid-19: Spanish government approves new state of alarm for the whole country
Council of Ministers of Spain
Council of Ministers of Spain

The Spanish government decreed a new state of alarm and announced a night-time curfew for the entire territory of the European nation from 11 pm to 6 am, as authorities grapple with the second wave of Covid-19. The country returns to the state of alarm seven months after the Council of Ministers on March 14 decreed it to contain the first wave of the pandemic.

Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez said he would ask the Spanish parliament to keep the emergency mechanism in place for six months, until May 9.

Regional News • Europe • Germany
Berlin police break up fetish party with 600 guests
Berlin police break up fetish party with 600 guests
Credit: Courtesy of Twitter / Polizei Berlin Einsatz

Police dissolve fetish party - a violation of Corona rules Hundreds of people met at a fetish party in Berlin - despite the current Corona contact restrictions.

A fetish party with about 600 guests in a location in Berlin-Mitte came to an abrupt end on Saturday evening. Officials of the Berlin police and the federal police disbanded the event at the Alte Münze. "There were simply too many for too little space," the police said later that evening. The guests were released into the Berlin night and sent home. Close-meshed controls at the weekend On Saturday, the Berlin police used hundreds of task forces to check whether people were following the Corona rules.

About 1,000 police officers were to be on duty during the course of the day, half of them from the federal police.

Regional News • Americas • United States
Remdesivir approved as first Covid-19 treatment by US FDA
Remdesivir approved as first Covid-19 treatment by US FDA
Credit: unsplash.com / Dimitri Karastelev

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Remdesivir, a broad-spectrum antiviral medication, as the first Covid-19 treatment. According to a study by U.S. National Institutes of Health, Remdesivir can cut the time of recovery from 15 to 10 days.