(MENAFN- Newsroom Panama) AFP -The spread of the Delta variant is forcing authorities in several countries to tighten sanitary restrictions, while in the United States the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warns that this variant is as contagious as chickenpox.
In an internal alarmist note, the US CDC estimates that the delta variant is as contagious as chickenpox and causes more serious consequences in patients, according to the Washington Post and the New York Times.
That is why Americans, even vaccinated, should wear the mask in areas where the virus circulates a lot. And to boost vaccination that seems to be stalling, President Joe Biden urged local authorities to pay $ 100 to first-time vaccinators.
In China, the first country to contain the epidemic in 2020, a new outbreak threatens the zero Covid-19 policy, with cases spreading from Nanjing (east) to five provinces and the capital, Beijing, for the first time in six months.
The efficacy of Chinese vaccines raises questions because most of the new cases are in vaccinated people. They can "slow the spread and reduce the death rate" but they do not "eradicate the virus," acknowledged Zhang Wenhong, an infectious disease expert from Shanghai.
In Australia , the Sydney police will enlist the help of 300 soldiers to enforce restrictions in the country's largest city (5 million inhabitants), where the number of infections broke a record on Thursday.
The confinement, which is in its fifth week, has lasted a month, until August 28, but many breach it by going to the beaches or parks.
A week after the start of the Olympics, Japan extended the state of emergency until the end of August in Tokyo and extended it to four other departments.
"The infection is spreading at a speed never seen before," the government declared on Friday, with a record of more than 10,000 daily cases. The organizers of the Olympic Games have also detected 27 new cases.
Israel , which believed its population was immunized, reinstated the health pass in places with more than 100 people on Thursday. And it launched a“complementary” campaign with a third dose for those over 60 years of age.
In Europe, where many countries are facing a fourth wave, there are also changes.
As of Sunday, Germany will generalize the obligation for unvaccinated tourists to present an anticovid test when entering the country "by plane, car or train."
The pressure is mounting to speed up vaccination, but it remains very uneven: the richest countries administered an average of 97 doses per 100 inhabitants and the poorest only 1.6 doses.
The Covax system, which supposedly allows poor countries to receive free injectables, expects to receive 250 million doses over the next six to eight weeks, the World Health Organization (WHO) reported.
Meanwhile, the situation is "desperate" in Burma, warned the United Kingdom, which urged the UN Security Council to ensure that vaccines can be distributed despite the crisis unleashed since the February coup.
In the Philippines 13 million people will be confined again next week in the Manila region to "save more lives."
The pandemic has killed at least 4,190,383 people worldwide since the end of December 2019, according to an AFP count Thursday from official sources. But the WHO believes that the number of deaths may be two or three times higher.
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