25 April 2021

• Africa – which is home to 17 percent of the world’s population – has been facing coronavirus vaccine shortages after India imposed export restrictions on its domestically produced vaccines. Dr. Matshidiso Moeti, WHO’s Regional Director for Africa, says that the 10 countries that have administered the most vaccines vaccinations have used up over two-thirds of their supplies, while “More than one billion Africans remain on the margins of this historic march to end this pandemic.” Source

• US coronavirus cases exceed 32 million. Source 

• The Biden administration  announces impediments to the export of raw materials for vaccines  had been removed, and that would send COVID-19 therapeutics, rapid diagnostic test kits, ventilators and PPE to India as well as public health advisers from the CDC. Source

• Despite ongoing  border conflicts, China offers its help to India as it battles record-breaking waves of coronavirus; foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said “The Chinese government and people firmly support the Indian government and people in fighting the coronavirus. China is ready to provide support and help according to India’s needs, and is in communication with the Indian side on this.” Source

• In New Delhi, a delayed oxygen delivery was fatal for twenty critically ill people who were hospitalized for COVID-19 – the third hospital-based tragedy in a week. Source

• The Daily Mail publishes a claim that UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson  said “No more ****ing lockdowns – let the bodies pile high in their thousands,” after reluctantly imposing England’s second lockdown. Source

• Thailand is implementing new measures to stop a surge of infections with the B.1.1.7  coronavirus, including slowing travel from India and imposing fines of up to $635 for going unmasked. Source

• COVIran Barekat, a coronavirus vaccine developed by Iran’s Shafa Pharmed Pars and made with inactivated virus, has entered phase III. Source

• In Baghdad, an exploding oxygen cylinder triggered a hospital fire that killed 82 people and injured over 100 others, many ill with COVID-19. The facility, which is in a low-income area, lacked smoke detectors, fire alarms and a sprinkler system. Source

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