The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Germany increased by 1,387 to 3,755,898, data from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for infectious diseases showed on Sunday. The reported death toll rose by 4 to 91,524, the tally showed.
Meanwhile, German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s chief of staff fears the number of new cases will soar in the next few weeks and could hit 100,000 a day by the end of September, causing big problems for many businesses.
Helge Braun, told Bild am Sonntag cases were increasing by 60% per week, even though nearly half the population has been fully vaccinated, Reuters reports.
If the Delta variant were to continue to spread at this rate and we don’t counter it with a very high vaccination rate or change in behaviour, we would have an incidence of 850 (per 100,000 people) in just nine weeks. That would equate to 100,000 new infections a day.
The impact on work processes in factories would be massive. We are already seeing this in the UK.
Mexico’s health ministry on Saturday recorded 15,823 new confirmed coronavirus cases and 362 fatalities, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 2,741,983 and the reported death toll to 238,316.
In the UK, Malcolm Clarke, chairman of the Football Supporters’ Association, said the idea of only fully vaccinated fans being able to attend Premier League matches is a “risk” that will need to be “managed very carefully”.
He told Times Radio:
Some of our members are totally opposed to this and think that it’s an infringement of their civil liberties or they don’t want to be vaccinated, whereas others say this is perfectly reasonable.
I think my major concern is to ensure that this is operationally okay. I think if they’re going to do this with big football crowds then they need to have the resources to do the checks. I’m not convinced that all football clubs will be able to manage that in a way that doesn’t cause some chaos.
There will certainly be some football supporters for whom this will be an incentive, who are desperate to get back in the ground and watch their teams.
There may be others who will say you know what, I’ve got used to being without going to the games and this is the last straw, I’m not coming back. How it breaks down between those two groups and everything in between, I wouldn’t like to predict.
But I think that there is something of a risk that football will lose some of its paying customers unless this is managed very carefully.”
Malaysia’s cases total passes 1 million
Malaysia’s total coronavirus cases since the start of the pandemic surpassed 1 million on Sunday after the country’s health ministry reported a record 17,045 new cases.
The total number of infections in the country stood at 1,013,438
Indonesia is preparing more intensive care units after logging several days of record-high Covid-19 deaths last week, while the country waits to see whether the government will extend or loosen tough restrictions due to expire on Sunday.
“Deaths have risen due to a number of factors: full hospitals, patients admitted with low saturation, or dying unmonitored in self-isolation,” Senior Minister Luhut Pandjaitan said in a statement late on Saturday, Reuters reports.
Luhut, who oversees the Covid response on the islands of Java and Bali, said ICU capacities would be added in areas that have reported the highest fatalities.
Bali, famous for its tourist beaches and temples, has been grappling with oxygen shortages.
Indonesia last week reported record-high deaths on four separate days, the last of which was Friday’s 1,566 fatalities, bringing cumulative deaths to more than 82,000. Total case infections have climbed to over 3.1 million, though health experts say both deaths and case numbers have been undercounted.
Just under 7% of its population of 270 million has been fully vaccinated, with Southeast Asia’s largest country primarily reliant on shots produced by China’s Sinovac Biotech .
China reported 32 new Covid-19 cases in the mainland on July 24, down from 35 cases a day earlier, the National Health Commission said in a statement. Five of the new cases were local infections, down from 13 the day before. Two were in the eastern province of Jiangsu, and there was one each in Liaoning, Yunnan and Guangdong provinces, Reuters reports.
The number of new asymptomatic cases, which China does not classify as confirmed cases, fell to 17 from 20 the day before.
The total number of confirmed Covid -19 cases in mainland China stands at 92,529, while the death toll unchanged at 4,636.
China has administered a total of 1.5387 billion doses of Covid-19 vaccines as of July 24, data from the National Health Commission showed on Sunday.
Australia’s Victoria state reported 11 locally acquired Covid-19 cases on Sunday, down from 12 a day earlier, raising hopes the state will end a hard lockdown imposed 10 days ago. State Premier Daniel Andrews said it was too early to say whether restrictions will be eased on Tuesday, but: “At this stage, though, things are going well.”
Still in Australia, prime minister Scott Morrison, who is under fire for a slow vaccine rollout, said more vaccine supply was not going to ensure New South Wales gets out of lockdown, but what was needed was an effective, properly enforced lockdown.
He told reporters at a televised media conference:
Let me be clear – there’s not an alternative to the lockdown in New South Wales to get this under control. There is no other magic bullet that’s going to do that.
While Berejiklian and other state leaders have blamed Canberra for the slow vaccine rollout, critics have said NSW did not enforce its stay-at-home orders, which has led to Delta variant leaks to other states, Reuters reports. At least 38 of the new cases in NSW had spent time in the community while infectious, state health authorities said.
Numbers of cases have stayed high even after four weeks of lockdown in Sydney, now expected to be extended beyond July 30. The state reported two deaths overnight, including a woman in her 30s with no pre-existing conditions.
To help speed up vaccinations in Sydney, the government’s official adviser, the Australian Technical Advisory Group on Immunisation (ATAGI), on Saturday changed its advice on the AstraZeneca vaccine, urging anyone in the city under the age of 60 to strongly consider getting vaccinated with it. ATAGI had previously advised against the AstraZeneca vaccine for people under 60 due to concerns about blood clots.
Morrison said on Sunday the government has secured an additional 85 million doses of the Pfizer vaccine, but they will only be delivered in 2022 and 2023. “To have those booster shots pre-ordered means we can go into 2022 with confidence,” he said.
Australia has managed to keep its epidemic largely under control with a total of about 32,600 cases and 918 deaths.
Australia logs more cases
In Australia, New South Wales logged its second-highest daily increase of the year in locally acquired Covid-19 cases on Sunday amid fears of a wave of new infections after thousands of people joined an anti-lockdown protest.
There were 141 Covid-19 cases reported, down from 163 a day earlier, Reuters reports.
The outbreak, which began in June, is being driven by the highly contagious Delta variant of the virus, and has now infected 2,081 people in New South Wales. There are 43 people in intensive care, up from 37 a day earlier.
NSW premier Gladys Berejiklian said: “In relation to yesterday’s protests, can I say how absolutely disgusted I was. It broke my heart.” She added: “I hope it won’t be a setback, but it could be.”
Prime minister Scott Morrison called the anti-lockdown protests in Sydney reckless and self-defeating.
India reports 39k new cases
India has reported 39,742 new Covid-19 cases in the last 24 hours, a government statement said on Sunday.
The Covid-19 death toll rose by 535 deaths in the last 24 hours, with the total reaching 420,551, health ministry data showed, Reuters reports.
UK could extend vaccine passports to sports events
Welcome to the coronavirus live blog. I’m Caroline Davies and here are some key developments to kick off today.
In the UK, it is being reported that only fully-vaccinated football fans may be able to attend Premier League matches and other events with more than 20,000 spectators from October under government plans. PA reports that talks are in an early phase with the Premier League to discuss whether supporters who have not been double-jabbed could be barred from entry, the news agency understands.
It adds that prime minister Boris Johnson risks provoking further criticism from backbench Conservatives as ministers seek to extend the future use of vaccine passports from nightclubs to sporting stadiums. The use of vaccine passports could also be extended to lower divisions and other sports in England as ministers seek to reduce the surge of Covid-19 cases as other restrictions are ended.
While no final decisions have been made, it is currently being discussed whether vaccine passports could be introduced for seated events with a capacity of 20,000 people and over, the PA reports.
Meanwhile summer holiday plans for nearly six million Britons could be ruined if Spain and Greece follow France onto the “amber plus” list requiring isolation on return, according to an analysis. Labour said an estimated 5,857,558 people face the prospect of last-minute quarantine requirements to protect against the spread of coronavirus after booking trips over the “summer of chaos”.
The government introduced an exemption for the requirement to isolate at home for 10 days for fully-vaccinated holidaymakers returning from countries on the amber list. But ministers removed the exemption for France amid concerns over the Beta variant, creating what critics call an “amber plus” designation on the traffic light system for foreign travel.
There has been speculation that Greece and Spain could face the same measures as France, though the UK government has not confirmed this.
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