The United States may have an "American variant" of the coronavirus, deemed more contagious, such as the one already identified in the UK. CNN reported citing a report from the White House anti-Covid task force. "In the autumn-winter, the rate of infections almost doubled compared to the spring and summer peaks," the broadcaster reported. This acceleration suggests a US variant might have evolved in addition to the UK variant that is already spreading in our community and maybe 50% more transmissible. Hence the call for stricter measures to combat a "much more aggressive" virus, including the use of masks, the implementation of strict distancing measures, and the immediate vaccination of as many people as possible.
The United States has recorded a new record of daily infections from Covid-19, with almost 290,000 cases in 24 hours. The deaths were instead over 3,600, according to data from the American Johns Hopkins University. According to the Covid Tracking Project, on the other hand, about 131,000 people are currently hospitalized in the United States for the new coronavirus. The United States has recorded 21.8 million cases and over 368,000 deaths from Covid-19 since the start of the pandemic.
Over 7 thousand cases in Sweden, new legislation approved
Crackdown in Sweden, where almost 7,200 cases of coronavirus and 171 deaths have been recorded in the last 24 hours. The Stockholm Parliament has passed new anti-pandemic legislation that gives the government the power to close businesses, limit customer numbers, and opening hours. "We know that Covid-19 is in society and will stay there for a long time. More precise measures are needed that can be maintained over time," explained Health Minister Lena Hallengren. The new legislation will enter into force on Sunday until next September and allow the executive to act on commercial activities and public transport, shopping centers, cinemas and theaters, and public parks and beaches. A change of course for the Scandinavian country maintained a gentle approach to the Covid epidemic, preferring to avoid rigid lockdowns but focusing on a sense of responsibility and distancing measures. The attempt to create herd immunity has clashed with the ever-increasing numbers of the epidemic: Sweden has so far recorded almost 500,000 infections and more than 9,400 deaths, much higher numbers than their northern neighbors.
France Mass test in Bagneux for a case of an "autochthonous" English variant
A man who worked in a kindergarten contracted the English variant, unable to connect with a trip or contact with the UK. A screening is underway in two institutes in Bagneux (in the Versailles region), where he worked to try to understand where this first "native" case comes from. In France, almost 20,000 new coronavirus cases have been recorded in the last 24 hours, slightly down from more than 21,700 yesterday, while the deaths were 281, a number just over 24 hours ago (277). Premier Jean Castex did not rule out further restrictions and announced the night curfew's extension until at least January 20. On Friday, 36,000 people were vaccinated. Two outbreaks of the new variant have been identified in Brittany, and the prime minister has announced that the UK's borders will remain closed until further notice.
Covid, in Germany, over 25,000 cases in 24 hours and 1,083 deaths
There were 24,694 new coronavirus infections in Germany in one day, bringing the total confirmed case toll to 1.89 million. According to the Robert Koch Institute, 1,083 deaths have also been recorded.
The United Kingdom, the slogan against the pandemic: "Behave as if you have Covid"
"Act like you have the virus" is the slogan of a new campaign launched by the British government to ask the Kingdom's subjects to stay at home. Yesterday record 1,300 victims. Meanwhile, a Lancet study reveals that three-quarters of those recovered from the coronavirus continued to have at least one symptom of the disease for six months. In most cases (63%), it was a question of fatigue and muscle aches, then insomnia (26%) and anxiety and depression (23%).
Japan, more border controls
Japan further tightens border controls, making the negative result of a swab to detect Covid-19 mandatory for all people in the 72 hours before entry into the national territory. The new provision will come into effect from Wednesday and affect citizens of 10 Asian countries who have so far been excluded for short business trips and study reasons, including China, South Korea, Vietnam, and Thailand. Upon arrival in Japan, another saliva test will be performed. People who tested negative will have to observe a period of fiduciary self-isolation of 14 days at their residence or domicile address, which must be notified to local authorities. The new rules adapt to those introduced at the end of December by the Tokyo government for all foreign citizens who do not have a residence permit in Japan following the discovery of the new variant of Covid present in the United Kingdom. Last Thursday, the executive introduced a state of emergency in the capital Tokyo and three other adjacent prefectures until February 7, which could be extended to Osaka, Hyogo, and Kyoto's prefectures.
Coronavirus in Brazil: the country exceeds 8 million cases
Brazil has reported 52,035 new confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus in the past 24 hours and 962 deaths from Covid-19, the health ministry said Friday. The South American country has now registered 8,013,708 cases since the start of the pandemic. In contrast, according to ministry data, the official death toll has risen to 201,460 in the third-worst outbreak in the world outside the United States and India.
33 new cases in China, 17 are local
Today, the National Health Commission of China announced the detection of 33 new coronavirus positives diagnosed in the northeastern province of Liaoning, the scene of a small outbreak in recent weeks. Today's 33 new infections represent a decrease in the trend recorded in recent days: on January 8, there were 53 new confirmed cases and 63 the day before. Health authorities also reported today the detection of 38 asymptomatic infections (21 of which came from abroad), but Beijing does not include them as confirmed cases if no symptoms occur. The total number of active infected in mainland China is 535, of which 16 are serious. The number of deaths has remained unchanged since mid-May: 4,634. In the semi-autonomous city of Hong Kong - hit by a fourth wave of infections for months - the authorities yesterday announced 45 new cases, bringing the total number of infected to over 9,100 and 155 deaths since the beginning of the pandemic.
Coronavirus in India, more than 150,000 total deaths
According to data from the American University Johns Hopkins, the total number of deaths linked to Covid-19 officially registered in India since the beginning of the pandemic has exceeded 150,000. The total infections in the Asian country have been 10.41 million, of which 10.03 million recovered. India is second in the world after the United States for the number of infections and third behind the United States and Brazil for the number of coronavirus victims.