April, 16 2020 - 10:21 PM
New York lockdown extended until 15 May
New York's lockdown measures will be extended until 15 May, the governor has said.
Governor Andrew Cuomo said that experts would determine when the state could re-open, reports the BBC.
He said the decision would not be "political" or "emotional".
"Data and science. We're talking about human lives here," he said.
April, 16 2020 - 10:13 PM
UK lockdown measures extended
The United Kingdom's coronavirus lockdown measures will be extended for at least three more weeks.
First Secretary of State Dominic Raab announced the extension on Thursday, reports the BBC.
April, 16 2020 - 09:47 PM
Putin postpones Victory Day military parade over coronavirus
President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday Russia would postpone its May 9 celebrations including a huge military parade across Red Square to mark 75 years since the Soviet victory in World War Two because of the deepening coronavirus crisis.
The Kremlin had hoped to mark the 75th anniversary with particular pomp this year and that an array of world leaders would attend, but Putin said in televised comments that the event had to be pushed back.
He said the event would be held later this year.
April, 16 2020 - 09:44 PM
Ferrari makes parts to turn snorkel masks into coronavirus kit
Luxury carmaker Ferrari (RACE.MI) has begun making parts to convert snorkel masks into respirators for treating patients with coronavirus and protecting medical workers.
The idea of adapting the masks, originally proposed by Italian engineers, is now being used in several countries to meet a surge in demand for respirators during the pandemic.
April, 16 2020 - 09:32 PM
Singapore reports 728 new virus cases in biggest daily jump, total 4,427
Singapore’s health ministry confirmed 728 new coronavirus infections on Thursday, taking the tally to 4,427 in the city-state.
It said 654 of the new cases were linked to migrant workers’ dormitories. The latest count of new infections was much higher than the previous daily record of 447 reported on Wednesday.
April, 16 2020 - 09:15 PM
Portugal set to extend coronavirus lockdown for 15 more days
Portugal’s parliament was expected on Thursday to extend a national lockdown imposed to combat the coronavirus for a further 15 days, while providing a chance to some businesses to reopen if the spread of the disease slows further.
Initially declared by President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa on March 18, the state of emergency restricted movement of people, and led thousands of businesses to suspend their activities, especially in the restaurant and hotel sector.
The new presidential decree before parliament would allow for a gradual reopening of some services and companies, but does not specify which ones or when, and says this will hinge on data continuing to show a slowdown in the spread of the coronavirus.
“The Portuguese have been the big heroes during the state of emergency period,” Interior Minister Eduardo Cabrita told parliament before the vote, due later on Thursday, on what would be the third extension of the lockdown.
April, 16 2020 - 09:04 PM
Australia to retain coronavirus curbs for at least another four weeks
Australia will retain curbs on public movement for at least four more weeks, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Thursday, dashing speculation the sustained low growth in new cases could spur a quicker return to normal.
Australia has avoided the high numbers of coronavirus casualties reported in other countries around the world after closing its borders and imposing strict “social distancing” measures for the past month.
“We want to be very clear with Australians, baseline restrictions we have in place at the moment, there are no plans to change those for the next four weeks,” Morrison told reporters.
Morrison later told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation that coronavirus testing may be expanded to include random sampling.
April, 16 2020 - 08:45 PM
Britons to cheer health workers with weekly applause
ritons will applaud health workers and carers from their front doors and windows again on Thursday in what has become a weekly moment of social solidarity during the coronavirus lockdown.
At 8 pm (1900 GMT), people around the country will join in applauding the National Health Service, with clips from previous weeks shared on social media under the #ClapForCarers hashtag.
Foreign Minister Dominic Raab is expected to join in from Downing Street as Prime Minister Boris Johnson continues to recuperate after contracting COVID-19.
April, 16 2020 - 08:17 PM
EU wants voluntary, privacy-based virus-tracking mobile apps
Mobile apps used by EU countries to contain the spread of the coronavirus should comply with the bloc’s privacy rules and seek people’s consent to use personal data, but exclude location data, the European Commission said on Thursday.
The EU executive’s recommendations are part of a unified European approach for using technology to combat COVID-19 and come after several EU countries rolled out a variety of apps, prompting criticism from data privacy activists.
“Strong privacy safeguards are a pre-requisite for the uptake of these apps, and therefore their usefulness,” European digital chief Thierry Breton said in a statement.
April, 16 2020 - 08:00 PM
Switzerland to start easing COVID-19 restrictions from April 27
The Swiss government will start a gradual relaxation of restrictions brought in to tackle spread of the new coronavirus from April 27, it said on Thursday.
Doctors, hairdressers, massage and cosmetics parlors will be the first businesses to be allowed to reopen, it said. This will be followed by compulsory schools, shops and markets from May 11, it added.
In a third stage it will reopen secondary schools, vocational schools and universities from June 8. The government also foresees allowing an existing ban of meetings of more than five people to be relaxed, although the details of this stage will be announced at the end of May.
April, 16 2020 - 07:55 PM
Trump to push for reopening US as millions more seek unemployment aid
US President Donald Trump on Thursday plans to announce new guidelines to reopen the economy after a monthlong shutdown over the coronavirus outbreak, despite concerns from health experts, governors and business leaders about a resurgence in cases without more testing and protocols in place.
April, 16 2020 - 07:50 PM
England's hospital Covid-19 death toll rises 740 to 12,396
The death toll from COVID-19 in English hospitals rose by 740 to 12,396, the national health service said.
“40 of the 740 patients (aged between 45 and 93 years old) had no known underlying health condition,” the health service said. The previous toll was 11,656.
The United Kingdom’s death toll is due to be published shortly.
April, 16 2020 - 07:36 PM
Prince William opens new UK emergency COVID-19 hospital
Prince William, the grandson of Queen Elizabeth, has opened an emergency COVID-19 hospital built in just eight days in the exhibition centre of Britain's second city, Birmingham.
William, the Duke of Cambridge, opened the new NHS Nightingale Hospital at the National Exhibition Centre (NEC) via video link.
April, 16 2020 - 07:25 PM
Covid-19 crisis strains needy and groups that help them
Sacred Heart Community Service thought it was prepared for the pain the growing COVID-19 pandemic would cause in San Jose, California. The nonprofit, which has long helped those struggling to pay rent or keep the lights on, rallied donors and helped set up an $11 million (£8.82 million) fund that would offer up to $4,000 a month to eligible households.
The online application process went live on the morning of March 23. Within hours, the site crashed as more than 1,000 attempted to apply.
April, 16 2020 - 07:14 PM
Facebook to notify users who have engaged with harmful Covid-19 posts
Facebook Inc (FB.O) said on Thursday it would start notifying users who had engaged with false posts about COVID-19 which could cause physical harm, such as drinking bleach to cure the virus, and connect them to accurate information.
The social media giant, which also owns photo-sharing network Instagram and messaging app WhatsApp, said it has been battling to control large volumes of misinformation such as posts that say physical distancing will not curb the disease.
April, 16 2020 - 07:04 PM
Drug smugglers hide $1.3 million worth of cocaine in UK face mask consignment
British customs officers have seized 14 kg of cocaine worth more than 1 million pounds ($1.25 million) that smugglers had hidden in a consignment of face masks in the UK customs zone of the Channel Tunnel.
The cocaine, wrapped in 15 packages, was found in boxes full of face masks when a Polish-registered van bound for Britain was searched, the interior ministry said. A 34-year-old Polish man was arrested.
April, 16 2020 - 06:50 PM
Dutch coronavirus cases rise by 1,061 to 29,214 - authorities
The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the Netherlands rose by 1,061 to 29,214, health authorities said on Thursday, with 181 new deaths.
The total death toll in the country is 3,315, the Netherlands’ Institute for Public Health (RIVM) said in its daily update.
April, 16 2020 - 06:42 PM
US Pentagon chief criticizes China as misleading, opaque on coronavirus
US Defense Secretary Mark Esper said on Thursday he believes China's leaders have been misleading and opaque about the coronavirus outbreak that originated there and does not trust that they are being truthful even now.
Continuing the Trump administration's criticism of China's handling of the virus outbreak, Esper told NBC's "Today" show he finds it difficult to believe information from the Chinese Communist Party.
"They've been misleading us, they've been opaque if you will from the early days of this virus. So I don't have much faith that they're even being truthful with us now," he said.
April, 16 2020 - 06:31 PM
Sanofi teams up with US firm Luminostics on developing Covid-19 testing app
French healthcare company Sanofi and US start-up technology company Luminostics said they were joining up to work on developing a smartphone-based self-testing solution to see if someone has the COVID-19 coronavirus.
Luminostics would contribute its proprietary technology forconsumer-diagnostics for COVID-19 testing while Sanofi would bring its clinical research testing experience and capabilities, the companies said in a joint statement on Thursday.
April, 16 2020 - 06:21 PM
Austria plans to test all retirement home residents for coronavirus
Austria, one of the more successful countries in Europe at flattening the curve of coronavirus infections, plans to test every retirement home resident as it expands efforts to measure the pandemic's spread, its health minister said on Thursday.
The Alpine republic acted early in its outbreak to shut schools, bars, restaurants, non-essential shops and other gathering places roughly four weeks ago. It has told the public to stay at home and work from there if possible.
April, 16 2020 - 06:10 PM
Germany's Oktoberfest unlikely to take place this year
The annual Oktoberfest, the world’s largest beer festival, is unlikely to take place this year due to the coronavirus crisis, the premier of the southern German state of Bavaria said on Thursday.
The Oktoberfest attracts around six million visitors to Munich every year, with many traveling from abroad. Revelers sit together on long communal tables to swig beer, eat sausages, pretzel or pork knuckle, and listen to oompah bands.
Bavarian premier Markus Soeder told journalists he was very skeptical whether this year’s festival - scheduled from Sept. 19 to Oct. 4 - could take place and said he would make a final decision with Mayor Dieter Reiter in the next two weeks.
The German government and regional state governors agreed on Wednesday to start relaxing some of the lockdown rules introduced last month to stem the spread of the coronavirus, but said big events would stay banned until Aug. 31.
April, 16 2020 - 05:50 PM
Europe coronavirus cases reach almost 1 million, coming weeks 'critical': WHO
Europe is in eye of the storm of the COVID-19 pandemic, with the number of cases nearing a million, and should move with extreme caution when considering easing lockdowns, the World Health Organization's regional director said on Thursday.
"Case numbers across the region continue to climb. In the past 10 days, the number of cases reported in Europe has nearly doubled to close to 1 million," the WHO's European director, Hans Kluge, told reporters in an online briefing.
April, 16 2020 - 05:41 PM
How coronavirus hitched a ride through China
As residents of China's Wuhan began leaving for the first time last week, a Reuters analysis of official statements, data and residents' accounts reveals how the coronavirus took hold and spread to more than 25 areas of the country before a Jan. 23 lockdown of the city.
April, 16 2020 - 05:33 PM
Russia will accept ventilators from United States if needed: Kremlin
Russia will accept an offer by US President Donald Trump to ship ventilators to the country if its efforts to contain an outbreak of the novel coronavirus require them, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Thursday.
April, 16 2020 - 05:26 PM
Malaysia to step up coronavirus tests with Korean antigen rapid kits
Malaysia has approved the use of antigen rapid test kits from South Korea, as it looks to increase its coronavirus testing among high-risk groups and in places where clusters are detected, a health official said on Thursday.
Southeast Asia’s third-largest economy said last month it was considering buying 1 million rapid antigen test kits from South Korea in an effort to screen more people for the virus.
The health ministry has placed orders for the test kits and expects to get the first batch by next week, after tests showed a sensitivity level of 84.4 percent for the coronavirus, the director-general of health Noor Hisham Abdullah told reporters.
April, 16 2020 - 05:23 PM
Indonesia taskforce sees May-June coronavirus peak of 95,000 cases
Indonesia expects the number of coronavirus cases to peak between May and June with around 95,000 infections, a government adviser said on Thursday, marking an official admission of the growing scale of the outbreak in the Southeast Asian country.
Health experts had been warning that Indonesia faces a sharp rise in cases after a slow government response masked the scale of infections in a country that has recorded 5,516 cases and 496 deaths, the highest death toll in East Asia after China.
“We believe the peak of the pandemic in Indonesia will start at the beginning of May and will last until the beginning of June,” said Wiku Adisasmito, a public health expert and an adviser to Indonesia’s COVID-19 taskforce, adding the number of cases during the peak could hit 95,000.
Based on epidemiological modelling from various institutions, including Harvard University, Adisasimto said cases may ultimately reach 106,000 by July.
April, 16 2020 - 05:17 PM
Inspired by Mother Teresa, Kenyan safari operator feeds 24,000 families
Safari operator Pankaj Shah would normally be showing tourists around the beauty spots of his native Kenya. Instead, he is spearheading a volunteer effort to feed thousands of families left penniless when the new coronavirus devastated the economy.
"One old woman told us she hadn't eaten for days - her sons had stopped supplying her because they have no work," he said, walking down a line of young men packing rice, flour, beans and long-life milk into boxes.
April, 16 2020 - 05:06 PM
Greeks prepare for muted Easter under extra lockdown measures
Greece is preparing for a muted Orthodox Easter this year after the authorities strictly forbade the traditional spirited celebrations of mass church attendance, firecrackers and large family gatherings.
Greece introduced a lockdown to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus four weeks ago, and so far the restrictions appear to have been effective. As of Thursday, officials reported 2,192 cases and 102 deaths, one of the lowest rates in Europe.
But compliance will be tested during the Easter celebrations in coming days, when hundreds of thousands of Greeks traditionally flock to churches and to their ancestral homes to celebrate Christ’s resurrection.
April, 16 2020 - 04:57 PM
Mexico could force businesses to close if they violate coronavirus rules
Mexico could force the closure of companies in non-essential sectors if they refuse to suspend operations during a state of emergency to curb spread of the coronavirus, a top health official said on Wednesday.
The announcement comes after a group representing US manufacturers told President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador that an economic shutdown over the virus could weaken North America's response to the pandemic.
April, 16 2020 - 04:50 PM
Spain's death toll from coronavirus rises to 19,130 - health ministry
The total number of people who have died from the new coronavirus in Spain rose to 19,130, the Spanish health ministry said on Thursday.
Over the past 24 hours, 551 people died from COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus, up from 523 the previous day, the ministry said.
The overall number of cases of those infected in the country rose to 182,816, from 177,633 on Wednesday.
April, 16 2020 - 04:40 PM
'It's Covid! Stay away!' Latin America's health workers face rising hostility
Shoved to the ground, splashed with bleach or glared at on public transportation, health workers face a growing tide of hostility across Latin America for potentially spreading COVID-19.
For Sandra Aleman, a nurse in the city of San Luis Potosi in central Mexico, the attack began when a group of children sprayed juice and soda on her white uniform, shouting, "It's Covid! Stay away from us!"
April, 16 2020 - 04:28 PM
Coronavirus could cause upheaval across Middle East: Red Cross
Coronavirus outbreaks across the Middle East threaten to shatter the lives of millions of already destitute people in conflict zones, and could fuel socio-economic upheaval, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said on Thursday.
Curfews and lockdowns imposed as public health measures to stem spread of the virus are already making it difficult or impossible for many to provide for their families, it said.
April, 16 2020 - 04:18 PM
Iran's coronavirus death toll rises by 92 to 4,869: health official
Iran’s new coronavirus death toll has risen by 92 to reach 4,869, Health Ministry spokesman Kianush Jahanpur said in a statement on state TV on Thursday.
Iran’s total number of cases of people infected with the new coronavirus has reached 77,995, Jahanpur said.
April, 16 2020 - 04:17 PM
Greatest number of England and Wales coronavirus deaths among old, male and infirm: data
Deaths from the novel coronavirus in England and Wales in March were highest among the old, those with underlying health conditions and men, according to official data published on Thursday.
England and Wales have so far recorded more than 12,000 deaths in hospital from the coronavirus, but official data has shown the true death toll is far higher when deaths in the community, such as nursing homes, are included.
April, 16 2020 - 04:05 PM
Hungary extends national lockdown to contain spread of coronavirus
Hungary is extending lockdown measures to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus by one week from Saturday, Prime Minister Viktor Orban’s chief of staff said at a media conference on Thursday.
The government would review the need to maintain the lockdown each Wednesday, Gergely Gulyas said.
Municipal governments would be allowed to impose special restrictions at the weekend again to ensure local communities are protected.
April, 16 2020 - 04:00 PM
Millions face hunger as African cities impose coronavirus lockdowns
Shehu Isah Daiyanu Dumus has run out of cash and says he only has a few handfuls of cassava flour left to eat.
The 53-year-old paraplegic man usually sells phone cards. But an extended lockdown to fight the new coronavirus in Nigeria's biggest city, Lagos, has left him stranded.
April, 16 2020 - 03:55 PM
Germany's Scholz says coronavirus is a call for European solidarity
The coronavirus pandemic should act as call for solidarity among Europe's leaders, German Finance Minister Olaf Scholz said, adding that he hoped the European Union would emerge from it stronger.
EU finance ministers agreed last week on half-a-trillion euros of support for their coronavirus-battered economies, but left open the question of how to finance the subsequent recovery in the bloc, which is headed for a steep recession.
April, 16 2020 - 03:50 PM
New ventilator receives approval in UK's battle against coronavirus: source
A new ventilator from medical device company Penlon has received regulatory approval from Britain in the first such go-ahead as part of ramped-up efforts to combat the coronavirus, an industry source told Reuters on Thursday.
Governments around the world are trying to boost the number of ventilators - mechanical breathing devices that can blow air and oxygen into the lungs - available to their health services.
April, 16 2020 - 03:46 PM
Face masks may be 'new normal' in post-virus life as US prepares gradual reopening
The death toll from the coronavirus pandemic in the United States approached 31,000 on Wednesday as governors began cautiously preparing Americans for a post-virus life that would likely include public face coverings as the "new normal."
The governors of Connecticut, Maryland, New York and Pennsylvania each issued orders or recommendations that residents wear face masks as they emerge from isolation in the coming weeks.
April, 16 2020 - 03:40 PM
China says has not seen large-scale exodus of foreign capital amid coronavirus
China has not seen large-scale exodus of foreign capital even as the coronavirus pressures the business of companies with foreigninvestment, the commerce ministry said on Thursday.
Official data on Wednesday showed that foreign direct investment (FDI) into China plunged 10.8% in January-March from a year earlier, because of the coronavirus outbreak.
April, 16 2020 - 03:31 PM
'Too early' to lift UK lockdown but coronavirus outbreak peaking, minister says
The United Kingdom's novel coronavirus outbreak is starting to peak but it is too early to lift the lockdown because the virus would "run rampant" if the government eased social distancing measures, Health Minister Matt Hancock said on Thursday.
The United Kingdom has the fifth highest official death toll from COVID-19 in the world, after the United States, Italy, Spain and France, though the figure only covers hospital fatalities and the real number is probably much higher.
April, 16 2020 - 03:18 PM
Dutch study suggests 3% of population may have coronavirus antibodies
A study of Dutch blood donors has found that around 3% have developed antibodies against the new coronavirus, health authorities said on Thursday, an indication of what percentage of the Dutch population may have already had the disease.
The head of the National Institute for Health (RIVM), Jaap van Dissel, disclosed the results during a debate with parliament, Reuters reported.
"This study shows that about 3% of Dutch people have developed antibodies against the coronavirus," Van Dissel said. "You can calculate from that, it's several hundred thousand people" in a country of 17 million.
There are 28,158 confirmed coronavirus cases in the Netherlands, but only the very ill and healthcare workers are currently being tested.
The blood donation service Sanquin announced it would begin testing on 10,000 samples weekly on March 19, but later said it would only disclose results to the RIVM.
April, 16 2020 - 03:12 PM
Bangladesh records highest daily Covid-19 death toll of 10 and 341 new cases
Bangladesh today confirmed 10 more deaths from coronavirus and 341 new cases of infection.
With the four new casualties, the death toll has risen to 60 from the virus – and a total of 1,572 people have been infected so far, The Business Standard Reported.
Some 2,019 samples were tested in the last 24 hours.
April, 16 2020 - 02:58 PM
Philippines reports 13 new coronavirus deaths, 207 more infections
The Philippine health ministry on Thursday reported 13 new coronavirus deaths and 207 additional infections.
In a bulletin, the health ministry said total deaths have reached 362 while infections have increased to 5,660, with the Philippines recording the most cases in Southeast Asian nations. But 82 patients have recovered, bringing the total recoveries to 435, it added, Reuters reported.
April, 16 2020 - 02:47 PM
Indonesia may reach peak of coronavirus infections in early May
Indonesia may reach the peak in coronavirus infections between early May and the beginning of June, with the number of cases predicted at 95,000, said government COVID-19 task force adviser Wiku Adisasmito today.
The novel coronavirus has killed 469 people and infected 5,136 others in the Southeast Asian country as of Wednesday, while more than 36,000 tests have been performed,Reuters reported.
Doni Monardo, the head of the task force, told reporters that 44 labs have been activated to conduct the polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests, adding that Indonesia was looking to do 10,000 tests a day.
April, 16 2020 - 02:32 PM
Why recovered S Koreans testing coronavirus positive again?
South Korean health officials are investigating several possible explanations for a small but growing number of recovered coronavirus patients who later test positive for the virus again.
Among the main possibilities are re-infection, a relapse, or inconsistent tests, experts say, Reuters reported.
South Korea had reported 141 such cases as of Thursday, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).
April, 16 2020 - 02:24 PM
Germany eases out lockdown with partial opening of shops, schools
Germany has achieved a "fragile intermediate success" in its the fight against the coronavirus and will take small steps out of lockdown with the partial reopening of shops next week and schools from May 4, Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Wednesday.
Social distancing rules would remain in place until May 3 under the measures that Merkel and the governors of Germany's 16 states agreed at Wednesday's meeting. They plan to meet again on April 30 to review how to proceed after May 3, Reuters reported.
April, 16 2020 - 02:19 PM
East Timor says coronavirus cases more than double to 18
East Timor confirmed on Thursday 10 more cases of coronavirus, taking its tally to 18, said Odete Maria Viegas, an official of the country's crisis management centre.
The southeast Asian nation reported its first case on March 21 but has not recorded any deaths among its population of less than 1.3 million. One person has recovered, Reuters reported.
April, 16 2020 - 02:08 PM
Russia reports nearly 28,000 coronavirus cases after new record daily rise
Russia reported 3,448 new confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus on Thursday, up from 3,388 the day earlier.
The overall number of cases reached 27,938, Reuters reported.
Thirty-four people died in the last 24 hours, which took the national coronavirus death toll to 232, the Russian coronavirus crisis response centre said.
April, 16 2020 - 01:44 PM
All major Indian cities named coronavirus hotspots
Six major cities in Inida, including the capital Delhi and the financial capital Mumbai, have been designated "red zones" for the Covid-19.
The government divided the country into colour-coded zones depending on the level of infection yesterday, BBC reported.
Red zones indicate infection hotspots, orange is for zones with some infection, while green indicates an area with no infections.
In total, 170 districts of the country have been designated red zones.
The cities of Chennai (formerly Madras), Bangalore, Kolkata and Hyderabad have all been marked red.
So far, officials haven't designated any green zone areas.
April, 16 2020 - 01:10 PM
Japan to expand state of emergency to rest of country
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is preparing to expand the state of emergency that Japan has declared for seven of its 47 prefectures so far to the rest of the nation in a bid to contain the coronavirus, the Yomiuri newspaper reported today.
Abe declared the state of emergency for Tokyo, Osaka and five other prefectures accounting for about 44% of Japan's population on April 7, to last through May 6. The nationwide emergency would last for the same duration, the Yomiuri said, Reuters reported.
April, 16 2020 - 12:45 PM
Australia to keep coronavirus restrictions for 4 more weeks despite success
Australia will keep in place restrictions implemented to curb the spread of the coronavirus for at least four more weeks, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Thursday, despite signs that Canberra has been succcesful in slowing infection rates.
Morrison said Australia will over the next month expand testing, improve its capacity to trace contacts of known coronavirus cases, and plan a response to any further local outbreaks, Reuters reported.
Morrison said these three steps will be finished within four weeks, and Australia will then review the restrictions that include curtailing the movements of residents, and the closures of schools, restaurants and pubs.
April, 16 2020 - 12:13 PM
Germany's coronavirus cases rise by 2,866, deaths by 315
Germany's confirmed coronavirus cases have risen by 2,866 to 130,450, data from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for infectious diseases showed on Thursday, meaning the number of new infections rose for a second consecutive day.
The reported death toll has risen by 315 to 3,569, the tally showed, Reuters reported.
April, 16 2020 - 11:37 AM
Thailand reports 29 new coronavirus cases, three new deaths
Thailand on Thursday reported 29 new coronavirus cases and 3 new deaths, bringing it to a total of 2,672 cases and 46 fatalities since the outbreak there escalated in January.
Of the new cases, 14 patients were linked to previous cases, five had no links to old cases, and 10 that tested positive are awaiting investigation into how they were infected, said Taweesin Wisanuyothin, a spokesman for the government's Center for COVID-19 Situation Administration, Reuters reported.
Thailand also reported that 1,593 patients have recovered and gone home.
April, 16 2020 - 11:09 AM
Switzerland to announce three-phase exit from coronavirus restrictions
Switzerland's government is due to unveil today how it plans to relax the country's shutdown put in place to halt the spread of the new coronavirus epidemic.
Health Minister Alain Berset will outline a three-stage plan to start a gradual opening of businesses and schools which have been shuttered for a month, Reuters reported.
Under Berset's plan, companies which provide personal services like hairdressers and physiotherapists will be allowed to return to work from April 27.
Following a gap of two or three weeks for monitoring, schools could reopen on May 11. Bars and restaurant would remain closed until at least June 8, before reopening in the third phase.
No plans have so far been drawn up for when mass events like concerts or soccer matches can restart. Switzerland has banned gatherings of more than 5 people under its emergency measures.
Switzerland's business community, facing huge losses from the shutdown, has been lobbying for lifting the restrictions as a soon as possible.
The COVID-19 outbreak has so far claimed 973 lives in Switzerland, although the rate of positive tests has slowed in recent days.
April, 16 2020 - 10:43 AM
Coronavirus to bring Asia's 2020 growth to halt for first time in 60 years: IMF
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) said today Asia's economic growth this year will come to a halt for the first time in 60 years.
The lack of growth will be "worse than the annual average growth rates throughout the Global Financial Crisis (4.7%) or the Asian Financial Crisis (1.3%)", it said, BBC reported.
April, 16 2020 - 10:33 AM
Doctors think ventilators might harm some Covid-19 patients
A global debate has emerged among doctors treating COVID-19: When should patients who need help breathing be placed on ventilators — and could intubation do some people more harm than good?
It's one of the biggest medical questions of the day, along with how effective the antimalarial hydroxychloroquine really is, a US doctor told AFP.
A growing number of doctors have said that COVID-19 patients appear to fade rapidly when they are put on ventilators and tubes are placed down their windpipes, AFP reported.
April, 16 2020 - 10:16 AM
South Korea ruling party wins parliamentary majority amid coronavirus outbreak
South Korea's left-leaning ruling party has won a landslide election victory, partial results showed today, after the coronavirus pandemic turned the political tide in President Moon Jae-in's favour.
His Democratic party secured an absolute majority in the National Assembly, its first for 12 years, on a turnout of 66.2 percent — the highest at a parliamentary election since 1992, AFP reported.
April, 16 2020 - 10:01 AM
What if coronavirus returns every year, like the common cold?
The novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 appears to be similar to its close genetic cousin SARS-CoV-1.
And for good reason: The virus responsible for the early 2000s SARS outbreak is, in many ways, the closest parallel to what we're dealing with now, Wired reported.
April, 16 2020 - 09:42 AM
Google to slow hiring for rest of 2020, CEO tells staff
Alphabet Inc's Google will slow hiring for the rest of the year, Chief Executive Officer Sundar Pichai told the company's staff in a memo on Wednesday.
"We'll be slowing down the pace of hiring, while maintaining momentum in a small number of strategic areas, and onboarding the many people who've been hired but haven't started yet", a Google spokesperson said, Reuters reported.
April, 16 2020 - 09:13 AM
Gates ups pandemic funds to $250 million, says Trump WHO move makes 'no sense'
Pulling funding from the World Health organisation (WHO) is a dangerous and nonsensical move when the world is facing the health crisis brought by the COVID-19 disease pandemic, Melinda Gates said on Wednesday.
Announcing an extra $150 million of funding from The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to help speed the development of treatments, vaccines and public health measures to tackle the new coronavirus outbreak, Melinda Gates said the WHO was "exactly the organisation that can deal with this pandemic", Reuters reported.
April, 16 2020 - 08:57 AM
WHO regrets Trump funding halt as global coronavirus cases top 2 million
The head of the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Wednesday he regrets US President Donald Trump's decision to pull funding for the agency, but that now is the time for the world to unite in its fight against the new coronavirus.
Trump's move prompted condemnation from world leaders as global coronavirus infections passed the 2 million mark, Reuters reported.
The United States is the world's worst-affected country and its coronavirus death toll topped 30,000 on Wednesday, according to a Reuters tally. The fatalities have doubled in just a week and set a record single-day increase for the second day in a row.
April, 16 2020 - 08:35 AM
French coronavirus toll jumps by record 1,438 deaths
The number of people who died from coronavirus infection in France jumped by 1,438 or 9.1% to 17,167 in the biggest single-day increase as a number of nursing homes reported cumulative tolls following the three-day Easter weekend, the health ministry said on Wednesday.
The number of people who died in hospitals rose by 514 or 5% to 10,643, less than the 541 reported on Tuesday, but the cumulative death toll in nursing homes rose by 924 or 17% to 6,524, compared with 221 on Tuesday, Reuters reported.
"This increase is not the mortality rate over 24 hours but is due to a catch-up in reporting of data following the three-day weekend," Health Ministry Director Jerome Salomon said.
He said the COVID-19 pandemic is still highly active and called on French people to strictly respect confinement measures.
But he also reported that for the first time since the start of the epidemic, the number of people in hospital for COVID-19 had fallen by 513 or 1.6% to 31,779 in a sign that the infection rate is slowing and that confinement is working.
"This is the first fall. We must welcome it but we must remain careful and await the evolution in the next few days," Salomon said.
The number of people in intensive care units (ICU) also fell for the seventh day in a row, by 273 or 4.1% to 6,457 and now stands well below the peak of 7,148 seen on April 8.
April, 16 2020 - 08:31 AM
China sees drop in imported coronavirus cases but local infections rise
China reported on Thursday fewer new coronavirus cases involving travellers arriving from overseas, but locally transmitted infections rose, with the Chinese capital seeing new local cases for the first time in more than three weeks.
New imported cases dropped to 34 on Wednesday from 36 a day earlier, the National Health Commission said, down for the third straight day, amid stringent border checks and reduced international flights, Reuters reported.
But the number of locally transmitted cases rose to 12 from 10 a day earlier, with the city of Beijing seeing three new local cases for the first time since March 23.
The other new local cases on Wednesday were in the provinces of Heilongjiang and Guangdong, both of which have been battling with an influx of infected travellers from overseas, mostly Chinese nationals returning from abroad.
Overall, mainland China reported 46 new confirmed cases on Wednesday, the same as a day earlier, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 82,341.
The number of new asymptomatic cases increased to 64 from 57 a day earlier.
China does not include patients with no clinical symptoms such as a cough or a fever in its tally of confirmed cases.
April, 16 2020 - 08:17 AM
UK coronavirus death toll rises 761 to 12,868
The number of people who have died in hospital in Britain from the coronavirus has risen to 12,868, according to health ministry figures published on Wednesday.
This is an increase of 761 on the previous day and official figures also showed that the number of people who have tested positive for COVID-19 has now reached 98,476, AFP reported.