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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

World’s coronavirus focus shifts from Europe to the Americas

Thaiger

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PHOTO: Out of nowhere, Brazil now has the world's third highest number of cases - Euronews.com

The focus of the world’s coronavirus pandemic has shifted in the past month, from Europe epicentres to the Americas, both north and south. Russia, too, has become a growing problem as the pandemic spreads from other European continental regions. In order, the US, Russia and Brazil are now the top three nations with the most cases.

In the US, at least 102,107 people have died from Covid-19, according to worldometers.com. The toll is almost twice the number of Americans lost during the entire Vietnam War.

The first known virus-related death happened on February 6 but, since then, an average of nearly 900 Americans have died every day. New York State, alone, has more cases than any other country, except Russia.

The US President Donald Trump continues to downplay the pandemic insisting that the country continue to re-open, and deflecting any blame for his administration’s late response to threats of the pandemic coming to the US.

World's coronavirus focus shifts from Europe to the Americas | News by Thaiger

GRAPHIC: worldometers.com

In China authorities have identified only 2 new Covid-19 patients yesterday, according to the country’s National Health Commission. Both cases were imported – one in Shanghai and the other in China’s southeastern province of Fujian. China has dropped to the 14th highest number of cases after leading the way in the first month of the Covid-19 outbreak.

Authorities in China have confirmed 82,995 Covid-19 patients to date, with 73 cases still active.

Brazil has now reported a total of 414,661 coronavirus cases as of midday, Thai time. Another 1,086 coronavirus-related deaths were reported in the previous 24 hours, according to the country’s health ministry, taking the national toll to 25,598. The ministry said 20,599 new cases were also confirmed in the past day.

At the start of May there were only 92,000 cases in the South American country with cases now creating a major public health headache for the country. The issue of lockdowns and restrictions has become highly politicised in Brazil with the President Jair Bolsonaro deflecting all responsibility for the coronavirus crisis, casting blame on mayors, governors, an outgoing health minister and the media.

In South Korea authorities have identified 79 new novel coronavirus cases in the past 24 hours, the most in a single day since April 5. 68 of the latest cases were locally transmitted, the majority in the capital Seoul.

The South Korean Health Minister says 54 of the patients identified yesterday were traced to an IT and logistics centre in Bucheon, a satellite city 25 minutes from Seoul.

“It’s possible that the Bucheon cases are linked to a cluster identified in Itaewon, a popular nightlife district in Seoul, but the investigation is ongoing.”

4,150 people connected to the latest Bucheon cluster are now under quarantine. 83% of them have been tested, the rest will be tested today, according to authorities.

Russia now has a total of 414,661 cases. Meanwhile the “Head of coronavirus information” has suggested that global anxieties over the Covid-19 pandemic is “misplaced”, his latest controversial statement after saying the infection “would kill as many people as it needs to”.

Alexander Myasnikov, a television doctor, was appointed in April to the role of informing Russians about coronavirus treatment and prevention and to battle “fake news” about Covid-19. After earlier describing Russia’s reported low death rate a “Russian miracle,” Myasnikov responded last week to the rising cases and deaths saying “those meant to die will die”.

 

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Norwegian-flagged ship with 6 Covid-19 infections off Songkla

Neill Fronde

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PHOTO: A Norwegian-flagged ship with 6 Covid-19 cases floats off Songkla. (via Boa.no)

A Norwegian-flagged ship is currently floating off the coast of Songkla in the south of Thailand with 6 crew members infected with Covid-19. The offshore support vessel is named the Boa Deep C and is currently anchored near Ko Nu Island and awaiting further instructions. A spokesman for the Thai Maritime Enforcement Command Centre confirmed that the boat has been waiting there since May 12.

At the Songkla Deep Sea Port, an official in the International Disease Control Office reported that the boat has 29 crew members on board for a journey that began on May 1 from India. The boat previously docked at port in Singapore for a stopover before travelling on to the Thai port.

The offshore support vessel arrived in the area around 8 am 0n May 11. At that time, Port of Songkla officials inspected the ship’s documents and administered Covid-19 swab tests to all people on board. The ship was originally cleared to travel on to Chon Buri and departed at 5 pm.

But later that evening around 10 pm, test results came back and revealed that 2 crew members from Ukraine, 2 from Poland, 1 from Russia, and 1 from India all tested positive for Covid-19. The ship was immediately ordered to return back to Songkla port by the local marine office.

The vessel arrived back the next day and was instructed to anchor by Ko Nu Island and await further updates. They were informed that travelling to any other seaport in Thailand or a nearby oil platform was strictly prohibited for any crew member. A field hospital was established on board the ship to isolate and begin treatment of the six Covid-19 infected crew members. None have reported any severe symptoms yet.

The maritime enforcement centre has dispatch patrol boats to observe the waters around the vessel and make sure that nobody leaves the Covid-19 infected ship and that nobody is allowed onto the boat. Officials in Songkla will continue to monitor the boat, stating that the ship is free to return to its country of origin at any time as long as they inform Thai officials first.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

 

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Poll: Work from home popular, reduces Covid-19, helps gov’t

Neill Fronde

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PHOTO: Working from home is believed to help slow the spread of Covid-19 among other advantages. (via PxHere)

As far as strategies to reduce the risk of Covid-19 infections goes, work from home policies may be the most popular, far more liked than masks and lockdowns. In a recent poll by Suan Dusit Rajabhat University, 1,533 people in Thailand were asked about their opinions on working from home. The majority of responses were well in favour of it.

The Suan Dusit poll was conducted online and found that when asked about various opinions and attitudes towards working from home, nearly 75% of respondents believed that staying home to work made them feel safer and could prevent Covid-19 from spreading more. Nearly half also felt like working from home was a good way to cooperate with government policies regarding Covid-19.

Nearly 43% of those polled were working from home. Only about 23% of people never worked from home, while just under 35% of people worked in some combination of home and at their office or place of business. Just over 40% of respondents said they lacked the equipment at home that would allow them to work from home.

While people generally like to work from home, those surveyed did believe that there were pros and cons to it. 44% felt working from home gave them more personal time for themselves and more time with their families. 88% believed it had a positive effect on the Covid-19 pandemic and 70% loved how working from home reduced travel and commute costs. Over 60% viewed it as a way to help the government in their struggle against Covid-19.

On the downside, about 66% of those surveyed complained that they saw an increase in their household bills as their usage of water, electricity and internet went up. 62% had trouble without their normal work equipment and 46% said slow communication was an issue.

Oddly though, when asked which they preferred, only 18% completely favoured working from home, while double the amount preferred the office and 37% liked both equally. Just under 9% gave no opinion. Overall though, work from home as a Covid-19 fighting policy had a success rating of 70% by those polled.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

 

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Covid UPDATE: 2,302 new infections and 24 deaths, provincial totals

Tim Newton

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The CCSA have announced 2,302 new infections and 24 Covid-related deaths over the past 24 hours. There’s now been a total of 101,447 infections and 589 deaths since the start of Thailand’s tally on January 18, 2020. More than 64,000 are registered as ‘recovered’. 35,055 people remain under treatment at public and field hospitals.

More news briefs on the Covid situation below.

Here are the provincial totals for Sunday as reported from the past 24 hours.

Covid UPDATE: 2,302 new infections and 24 deaths, provincial totals | News by ThaigerCovid UPDATE: 2,302 new infections and 24 deaths, provincial totals | News by ThaigerCovid UPDATE: 2,302 new infections and 24 deaths, provincial totals | News by ThaigerCovid UPDATE: 2,302 new infections and 24 deaths, provincial totals | News by ThaigerCovid UPDATE: 2,302 new infections and 24 deaths, provincial totals | News by ThaigerCovid UPDATE: 2,302 new infections and 24 deaths, provincial totals | News by Thaiger• A new study highlights the often maligned effectiveness of the Sinovac and AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine, showing they are both quite effective in boosting the immune system against the Coronavirus. The Center of Excellence in Clinical Virology of the Faculty of Medicine at Chulalongkorn University conducted the study that found that one month after the first shot of AstraZeneca, over 97% of people had developed immune responses. Results were not yet in for the second injection.

Three weeks after the first injection of the Sinovac vaccine, just under 66% of people had developed immune responses, but four weeks after the second injection, that number jumped to an impressive 99.49%.

Full report HERE.

• Indonesia is temporarily halting distribution of a single batch of AstraZeneca vaccine to check for “sterility and toxicity” The temporary action follows reports of a few adverse effects after immunisations.

The batch consists of 448,480 vaccine doses that arrived in the southeast Asian nation last month, part of a delivery of more than 3.85 million doses. Some of the doses have been distributed in part of the capital, Jakarta, and the province of North Sulawesi.

• Starting Monday, restaurants in Bangkok, Nonthaburi (immediately north of Bangkok), Pathum Thani, and Samut Prakan (south east of Bangkok) will be allowed to offer dine-in services at 25% of seating capacity until 9pm.

Restaurants in other 17 Red Zone provinces will be allowed to stay open until 11pm without seating limitations. Restaurants in the other Orange Zone provinces will be allowed to resume “normal operations”, though alcoholic beverages may not be served anywhere across the country. In the Red Zones, schools can open as normal with permission from local and provincial authorities. In the Orange Zone schools can open without permission but under the latest rules.

Covid UPDATE: 2,302 new infections and 24 deaths, provincial totals | News by Thaiger• The Office of the PM has dismissed as false online rumours that Her Majesty the Queen was infected with Covid-19.

The office urged people to monitor Covid-19 news from a reliable channel, such as the Facebook page of the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration.

• Chonburi and Chiang Mai are being removed rom the dark red zone, or maximum control area, due to an improvement in the Covid situation in those 2 areas.

“If this proposal is approved by the prime minister, there would only be 4 provinces designated as dark red zone, namely Bangkok, Nonthaburi, Pathum Thani and Samut Prakan.”

Chonburi, with only 33 new infections yesterday, will be moved to the orange zone, or medium control area, joining 16 other provinces… Kanchanaburi, Chachoengsao, Tak, Nakhon Pathom, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Narathiwat, Prachuab Khiri Khan, Ayutthaya, Phetchaburi, Yala, Ranong, Rayong, Ratchaburi, Samut Sakhon, Songkhla and Surat Thani.

Phuket was also downgraded into the Orange Zone category.

SOURCE: FRB

 

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