Health


Netherlands bans United Kingdom flights, fearing new coronavirus variant
- December 20, 2020

A travel ban will remain in place until January 1, the government said in a statement early Sunday, adding that it is monitoring developments and is considering additional measures regarding other modes of transport. It promised to update governments and the public as more is learned about this variant. Studies are under way to better understand how fast it spreads and and whether "it's related to the variant itself, or a combination of factors with behavior", she said. (more...)
UK's new COVID variant: How does the virus act? UK's new COVID variant: How does the virus act?
- December 20, 2020

People in the new so-called Tier 4 areas "should behave as though they have it", he said. "It is with a very heavy heart that I must tell you we can not continue with Christmas as planned", the prime minister said. "Yes Christmas this year will be different, very different". "I know how much emotion people invest in this time of year, and how important it is for grandparents to see their grandchildren", Johnson said. (more...)
New, faster-spreading strain of coronavirus confirmed in Britain New, faster-spreading strain of coronavirus confirmed in Britain
- December 20, 2020

England's chief medical officer Chris Whitty confirmed Saturday that a new coronavirus strain which surfaced in the country could spread faster and called for greater public vigilance to reduce transmission. Prime Minister Boris Johnson , meanwhile, imposed a full lockdown on London and southeast England in a desperate attempt to stop the spread of the new coronavirus strain. (more...)
Covid: Action may be needed to halt new strain, Nicola Sturgeon warns
- December 20, 2020

Measures had been set to ease across the United Kingdom between December 23rd and 27th. The lockdown will apply to most of Scotland. "I know how harsh it is, ' she said, adding 'but this virus doesn't care about anything apart from spreading as far and wide as possible". (more...)
CDC Issues New Guidelines for COVID-19 Vaccine Side-effects
- December 20, 2020

Despite the new warning, adverse reactions to the vaccine have been exceedingly rare, as there have been just six allergic reactions recorded out of 272,000 shots given. The US CDC recommends that all recipients of the Covid-19 vaccine be observed for 15 minutes after injection, and those with a history of anaphylaxis (due to any cause) be observed for 30 minutes. (more...)
Covid: WHO in 'close contact' with United Kingdom over new variant Covid: WHO in 'close contact' with United Kingdom over new variant
- December 20, 2020

He said that in the rest of England, people will be allowed to meet in Christmas bubbles for just one day instead of from December 23-27, as originally planned. According to Whitty, the new variant is responsible for 60% of infections in London, which have almost doubled in the last week. From 26 December, non-essential shops will be shut and movement outside homes restricted. (more...)
FDA authorizes Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine for emergency use
- December 20, 2020

Army General Gustave Perna, chief operating officer for Operation Warp Speed, apologized to some state governors Saturday, acknowledging a "miscommunication" with states about how many doses of Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine would initially be available. (more...)
Some Coronavirus Restrictions Have Been Reintroduced in Greater Sydney Some Coronavirus Restrictions Have Been Reintroduced in Greater Sydney
- December 20, 2020

In regards to one woman from the Northern Beaches who was travelling in Queensland when she tested positive for coronavirus, Queensland Health has urged anyone who was at the Glen Hotel in Eight Mile Plains on December 16 between 11am and 2.30pm to contact them if they have not heard from Queensland Health. (more...)
CDC advisory group votes to recommend Moderna's COVID-19 vaccine
- December 20, 2020

The military leader of Operation Warp Speed, Gen. Gustave Perna, said Saturday that he takes sole responsibility for last week's confusion over the allotment of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine to states, which led more than a dozen governors to complain that they had received far fewer doses than originally promised. (more...)
Province records 245 new COVID-19 cases Province records 245 new COVID-19 cases
- December 20, 2020

Of the new cases, 53 were in the north west, 46 were in the Saskatoon zone and 42 in the Regina zone. Seventeen people are in intensive care - nine in Saskatoon, five in the North Central, and three in Regina. 47 cases have pending residence information. Almost 400,000 tests have been processed in Saskatchewan since the pandemic began. For more information on the public health measures that take effect Saturday, December 19, or to see the Public Health Order, visit ... (more...)
Britain says new coronavirus variant up to 70% more transmissible Britain says new coronavirus variant up to 70% more transmissible
- December 20, 2020

Emerging scientific evidence suggests the new strain can spread significantly more quickly than previous strains in circulation and is behind a huge surge in infections in recent days. That compared to 28 per cent three weeks earlier. Indoor hospitality, such as pubs, restaurants and cafes are already shut in these areas as they are in tier 3. (more...)
Northern Ireland to enter six-week COVID-19 lockdown on December 26 Northern Ireland to enter six-week COVID-19 lockdown on December 26
- December 20, 2020

Close-contact services, such as hair salons, will have to shut and pubs, cafes and restaurants will be restricted to takeaway services. The Northern Executive is meeting this afternoon to consider introducing tighter Coronavirus restrictions after Christmas. (more...)
Ford calls emergency meeting with Ontario health officials over hospitalizations Ford calls emergency meeting with Ontario health officials over hospitalizations
- December 19, 2020

Toronto Mayor John Tory said he understands and supports Ford's decision to keep the city in lockdown past Monday. "The trends we're seeing throughout Ontario are very, very concerning", Ford said. He said that the lockdown orders in Toronto and Peel that are set to expire next week will also be extended and will now be re-assessed on January 4. (more...)
Covid-19: Christmas rules tightened for England, Scotland and Wales Covid-19: Christmas rules tightened for England, Scotland and Wales
- December 19, 2020

The government has said restrictions on socialising will be eased from December 23 to December 27 to allow people to travel and celebrate Christmas with family and friends. 'We have alerted the World Health Organisation and are continuing to analyse the available data to improve our understanding'. There is no current evidence to suggest the new variant causes a higher mortality rate, that it affects vaccines and treatments, or that testing will not detect cases. (more...)
Hospital Fire Kills 9 COVID-19 Patients at ICU in Turkey Hospital Fire Kills 9 COVID-19 Patients at ICU in Turkey
- December 19, 2020

Quickly brings the fire under control. Gaziantep governorate said in an earlier written statement that eight out of 19 patients in the intensive care unit at private Sani Konukoglu Hospital died, and 11 patients were transferred to other hospitals. (more...)
US gets second COVID-19 vaccine US gets second COVID-19 vaccine
- December 19, 2020

The one expert who abstained said in the "midst of a pandemic and with limited vaccine supply available, a blanket statement for individuals 18 and older is just too broad". "I want to take personal responsibility for the miscommunication", he said. The Covid-19 vaccine distribution process has been markedly more complex, as the vaccine requires two doses spaced three to four weeks apart. (more...)
Sydney imposes lockdown on beach suburbs as COVID cluster grows Sydney imposes lockdown on beach suburbs as COVID cluster grows
- December 19, 2020

A bus driver who transported air crew from the city's airport also tested positive for an overseas strain of the virus earlier this week, but he is not linked to the northern beaches cluster, officials said. The authorities believe the initial transmission sites were two clubs at Avalon Beach, but have named more than 30 subsequent potential transmission sites, from banks and post offices to supermarkets and pharmacies, and advised people who have visited the sites to be tested. (more...)
UK's Johnson summons ministers over new COVID-19 variant UK's Johnson summons ministers over new COVID-19 variant
- December 19, 2020

The Telegraph also reported on Friday that government officials expected the AstraZeneca-Oxford University COVID-19 vaccine would clear regulatory approval on December 28 or 29, helping to accelerate the vaccination campaign. Following a lunchtime conference call with ministers, Mr Johnson will hold a press conference with Prof Whitty and the Government's chief scientific adviser, Sir Patrick Vallance at 4pm. (more...)
Former Taoiseach predicts Brexit deal by end of weekend Former Taoiseach predicts Brexit deal by end of weekend
- December 19, 2020

Yet big differences remain to be bridged, in particular on fisheries. "He said that we were making every effort to accommodate reasonable European Union requests on the level playing field, but even though the gap had narrowed some fundamental areas remained hard". (more...)
Trump Approves Stopgap Funding Bill to Avoid US Government Shutdown Trump Approves Stopgap Funding Bill to Avoid US Government Shutdown
- December 19, 2020

It's part of an effort by lawmakers to buy additional time for frustratingly slow endgame negotiations on an nearly $1 trillion COVID-19 economic relief package. There are still pushes by lawmakers on both sides of the aisle for $1,200 in direct payments, compared to $600 checks for most Americans now proposed. (more...)

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