At 10 Mumbai centres, over 1,900 vaccinated: ‘Entire experience was like a picnic’


On Saturday, 4,000 beneficiaries, including doctors, nurses, paramedics and healthcare staffers, were expected to turn up at the 10 designated vaccine centres across Mumbai for inoculation. However, only 1,926 — 560 from Mumbai city and 1,266 in Mumbai Suburban — turned up for vaccination, making Mumbai the only city in the state with a turnout of less than 50 per cent.

1) Babasaheb Ambedkar Kandivali Shatabdi centre: 266 Vaccinated

In Babasaheb Ambedkar Kandivali Shatabdi hospital, Medical Superintendent Dr Pratima Patil said 266 people out of the 500 who were sent text messages came for vaccination. Five people, who were pregnant or lactating, were not eligible for vaccination. “The entire experience was like a picnic. Everybody enjoyed the whole process of vaccination. We had no adverse event, not even mild ones,” Patil said.

The beneficiaries were a mix of government and private healthcare workers. “The entire list was prepared by local ward office. They manually texted each beneficiary to visit the centre,” a civic official said.

The data of all the beneficiaries could not be uploaded on the Co-Win app in real time and the centre recorded details of all beneficiaries on paper. They will now upload this data on a Google sheet and mail it to BMC headquarters, where the final data will be uploaded.

2) Sion Hospital: 188 vaccinated

Dean Dr Mohan Joshi was the first of the 400 registered to get vaccinated on Saturday in Sion Hospital. The hospital kept its vaccination centre open until 8 pm. Following the dean’s shot, mostly professors and lecturers in the hospital were given the intramuscular jab. “In our centre, apart from text messages, people also got a call from BMC ward office to remind us of our shot. My call came at 6 in the morning,” Joshi said.

A resident doctor from the hospital said they did not notice severe adverse event in any beneficiary. The hospital has posted resident doctors and nurses on a month long duty for vaccination.

The community medicine department is handling the entire vaccination process. Doctors working in Dharavi will mostly be directed to Sion Hospital for their inoculation.

3) Bandra-Kurla Complex (BKC): 220 vaccinated

The centre was expecting 500 health workers on the first day of immunisation. Dr Madhura Patil (26), who is a dietician in the Asian Heart Institute Hospital, was the first beneficiary at BKC and got her shot in the presence of Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray. Many beneficiaries arrived at the centre early morning. However, chaos reigned in the morning after last-minute changes were made to the site of the launch event that was to be presided over by Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray.

Just before the Chief Minister was about to arrive, the authorities shifted the vaccination event place to a nearby room since they realised that the current room will not be able to handle the crowd gathered at the centre. This led to chaos in the centre with zero social distancing. However, the vaccination areas were not affected. The vaccination process occurred smoothly in the latter half of the day.

4) R N Cooper Hospital: 262 vaccinated:

BUILT AS a model centre for the vaccination process, the Dr R N Cooper Hospital in Vile Parle saw a red carpet entry and aarti thaalis for the beneficiaries on Day 1. With five of the 10 vaccination booths functioning on Day 1, the turnout from 11.15 am to 5 pm was 262 of the 500 listed. A majority of those who were vaccinated at the centre were staffers from Cooper Hospital, BMC’s health staff from K-West and K-East wards and healthcare workers from two private hospitals and one diagnostics laboratory conducting Covid-19 tests.

Most of those who got vaccinated said that they had received calls from the ward office informing them about their turn. Hospital staff had assigned various checks in place including tallying of names on the list with identification proofs of those being vaccinated and colour tokens denoting the booth they have to enter.

Hospital Dean Pinakin Gujjar said that no adverse effects were reported at the hospital. While the vaccination began at the centre with former Maharashtra health minister Dr Deepak Sawant, staffers from Cooper hospital who were vaccinated received the maximum cheers and wishes from their colleagues on duty at the centre. With the Co Win app not working at the hospital, the entire process was handled manually by the staff.

5) VN Desai Hospital: 80 vaccinated

While healthcare workers were informed that the process of vaccination would begin by 10 am, it began post 1 pm, delayed as the centre awaited being “inaugurated” by former mayor of the city, Vishwanath Mahadeshwar. The hospital has two vaccination booths and was expecting 200 persons on Day 1. Medical Superintendent Prashant More said that the total tally at the end of the day was 80 from both the booths. Most of those on the list at the hospital were staff members of the civic hospital, BMC health workers and staff from various maternity hospitals in the area.

They said that they had received calls from the ward office on Friday night and Saturday morning, asking them to remain present. The initial beneficiaries said that they had reached the hospital since 9.30 am and had to wait for the process to start. The first to be vaccinated were 56-year-old medical officer Madhav Karanth and 36-year old Vishal Jadhav, a doctor assigned with the casualty ward. Jadhav and his family members had been infected with Covid-19 in September and hospitalised. Most of those who got vaccinated were staff on-duty at their various health posts. They returned to their workplace post the mandatory 30 minutes observation period.

6) JJ Hospiral: 39 vaccinated

J J hospital was the earmarked centre for the inoculation of the indigenously-developed Covaxin. With last minute training on dosage and process of vaccination undertaken on Thursday night, JJ hospital at Byculla prepared itself to inoculate around 100 healthcare staffers from the hospital with Covaxin shots, on Saturday. However, only 39 were vaccinated. With only a hundred scheduled to be administered with the vaccine, JJ hospital centre did not face any crowding related issues.

With a small waiting area, two to three health workers walked in every half-an hour-for the vaccine to be administered. Once the name of the beneficiary was checked in the list of 100 enlisted for the first day of the drive, blood pressure, temperature and O2 levels were checked at the registration desk. As the Bharti Biotech’s Covaxin, which is yet to complete the last stage of the human clinical trials, was to be administered at the centre, beneficiaries also had to fill a written consent form. They were then directed to the vaccination booth set up in the next room and then to the observation room for half an hour. JJ Hospital Dean Ranjeet Mankeshawar was the first one at the centre to get the Covaxin, to dispel any fears. “The vaccine is absolutely safe and I have taken it myself. I am feeling fine and there is nothing to worry. This vaccine has been approved after due process.”

7) BYL Nair Charitable Hospital, Mumbai Central: 190 vaccinated

A massive tent was set up at the Nair hospital, serving as the waiting area for the beneficiaries. The vaccination room had 10 chairs and seats each, placed in a row, with antibacterial curtains separating each set. In a bid to control crowding and lining up of beneficiaries outside the vaccination booths, each was provided with a token and were only released in the batches of three and maximum five. The centre also had a token display system and announcements for the beneficiaries.

Dr Lona dash, secretary, infection control and in charge of the centre said, “In the last few days I have received plenty of questions around the efficacy of the vaccine. The main being, should one wait more before getting the shot. I appeal to all the doctors, frontline/health workers, who are the lucky few to be enlisted, should get vaccinated. We have had an incident-free observation after the vaccine administration.”

8) KEM Hospital: 243 vaccinated

At King Edward Memorial hospital in Parel, the vaccination centre was set up on the second floor of the new building. Registration booths and waiting area were set up at the entrance of the building, to avoid crowding near the vaccination booths. A token display system was also installed at the centre to help the beneficiaries. At the frontline of Mumbai’s battle against the pandemic, this 95-year-old hospital was the major civic-run hospital in the city, which began admitting the Covid-19 patients.

With separate entry and exit, the hospital assured that each beneficiary completes the mandatory half an hour observation period. As many as 243 healthcare, doctors and frontline workers were administered the vaccine at the centre on Saturday.

9) Bhabha Hospital, Bandra: 149 vaccinated

At Bhabha Hospital, Bandra West, the immunization drive witnessed low turnout. The drive started around 11.30 am and a total 300 health workers were registered for the vaccination. However, at the end of the day (drive was stopped at 5 pm) 149 health staff had been vaccinated. Doctors from the hospital said that the numbers of beneficiaries will be gradually increased. No complaints of adverse reaction were received at the centre.

A doctor from Bhabha Hospital, who was supervising the vaccination drive, said that since many beneficiaries got late calls, they could not turn up for vaccination. “Many staff have night shifts so if they get a call late at night, then it was not possible for them to come today,” said the doctor. The centre was almost empty around 4.30 pm as no beneficiaries were there. Officials said that those who have missed their turn will be called at the end now.

“So far, it has been decided that total three calls will be made and messages will be sent on their numbers. If they missed that, then it will be assumed that they don’t want to be immunized,” said a doctor

10) Rajawadi Hospital : 289 vaccinated

As the day progressed, Rajawadi Hospital better managed the immunization programme for health workers arriving at the centre for inoculation. The hospital had set up electronic boards where token numbers of registered health workers were displayed, after which they were proceeding towards vaccination rooms. Many Anganwadi workers had also reached to take the first shot of the vaccine. Some of them were taking selfies while standing in a queue or at the waiting room. The token system made the things easier for both staff as well as beneficiaries. Rajawadi Hospital had registered 500 health staff for vaccination.

According to the doctors from BMC, no adverse impact has been observed on any health workers. Dr Vidya Thakur, medical superintendent of Rajawadi Hospital, was among the first of the health staff who got vaccinated at the centre.

Thank you for visiting My Local Pages and reading this news update on the latest Indian news items named “At 10 Mumbai centres, over 1,900 vaccinated: ‘Entire experience was like a picnic’”. This story was presented by MyLocalPages Australia as part of our national news services.

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U.K. now has enough vaccine “to cover the entire population” after AstraZeneca and Oxford COVID-19 vaccine approved


The U.K. now has enough vaccine to cover the entire population after AstraZeneca and Oxford COVID-19 vaccine approved, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said in an interview on Wednesday. 

The coronavirus vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford has been approved in the U.K., paving the way for widespread vaccinations with a homegrown shot that is cheaper and easier to transport and store than other vaccines.

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency, the U.K. drug regulator, authorized the AstraZeneca-Oxford University vaccine for emergency use on Wednesday.

It said in a statement: “The Government has today accepted the recommendation from the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) to authorise Oxford University/AstraZeneca’s Covid-19 vaccine for use. ”

Hancock said in an interview with the BBC Breakfast show: “We’ve got enough of this vaccine on order to vaccinate the whole population – 100 million doses. Add that to the 30 million doses of Pfizer and that’s enough for two doses for the entire population.”

Shares in Cambridge, U.K.-based AstraZeneca
AZN,
+0.76%
traded 3.3% higher in London on Tuesday. 

The approval comes weeks after the U.K. became the first country to authorize a COVID-19 vaccine based on large-scale clinical trials, when it gave the green light to the shot from U.S. drug company Pfizer
PFE,
+0.62%
and its German partner BioNTech
BNTX,
+0.19%
on Dec. 2.

Plus: AstraZeneca stock tumbles as Alexion shares soar after companies agree on takeover deal

Approving the vaccine from AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford could make a huge difference in helping the U.K. battle the coronavirus pandemic, and lift the severe social distancing restrictions that were put in place before Christmas.

Cabinet minister Michael Gove told Sky News on Monday that if the vaccine was approved and the rollout goes to plan, it may be possible to lift tough restrictions.

Around 24 million people in England, including all of London, are now living under the strictest tier of restrictions, including a “stay at home” order. The U.K. recorded a record 53,135 new coronavirus cases on Tuesday.

The homegrown AstraZeneca-Oxford University shot gives the U.K. domestic capacity for vaccine production. 

Also read: AstraZeneca believes its coronavirus vaccine will be effective against new strain

The vaccine is also cheaper and easier to transport and store than the one from Pfizer and BioNTech. That vaccine must be kept at ultralow temperatures of -70 degrees Celsius (-94 degrees Fahrenheit), compared with the British vaccine’s required storage at normal refrigerator temperatures.

While the vaccine will be rolled out soon in the U.K., it could be February before it is approved in much of Europe.

Noël Wathion, the deputy executive director of the European Medicines Authority, the EU’s drug regulator, told Belgian press on Tuesday that it was unlikely that the AstraZeneca-Oxford University vaccine would be approved in the EU next month. Wathion said the drug company had yet to file an application with the regulator.



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ANU penalises entire class of 300 students for alleged plagiarism after being unable to find perpetrators


An entire computer science class at the Australian National University (ANU) in Canberra has been told every student will be penalised 30 per cent of their marks because some of them cheated on an assignment.

ANU computer science convenor Hanna Kurniawati wrote to students of her third-year algorithms class on Monday to say that because she could not identify the perpetrators of “massive academic misconduct reports”, the entire class of about 300 students would be punished.

“Please don’t complain to teaching staff about this penalty, rather you should complain to your colleagues who were trying to outsource their [final project] (which is plentiful),” Dr Kurniawati wrote in the email.

“Though, we’re nice enough to put the minimum of [final project] mark to be zero (i.e. none get negative mark).”

The project, which was to develop a software application, was worth 25 per cent of the overall course mark.

The ABC understands the alleged cheating came to the light after the university noticed ads offering payment to complete the assessment.

However, the ads could not be linked back to individual students.

Students vented their anger on a private ANU Facebook group.

The affected students have complained about the decision on social media.(ABC News)

Some called the class an “evil course” and the decision a breach of academic misconduct rules.

“Wasn’t much better when I took that course … You should ABSOLUTELY complain to relevant teaching staff about it and it’s totally screwed up that they’re asking you not to,” a former student wrote.

Another joked it was “time to call ANU to The Hague”.

The ANU Computer Science Students Association said the penalty had caused students considerable stress.

“The announcement of such a change so late in the year — after grade release, even — as well as your attempt to direct enmity within the student cohort, only adds to the stress this announcement brings to students in what has already been an incredibly stressful year,” association president Felix Friedlander wrote to the university.

“By penalising uniformly, students who have learned and demonstrated an understanding of the course to what would have otherwise been an acceptable level may not pass.”

Rules require alleged misconduct to be fully investigated

Under the university’s academic misconduct rules, allegations of serious plagiarism must be reviewed by the course convenor or referred to a registrar for investigation.

The reviewer must write to the student to inform them of the allegation and offer them a chance to respond.

If the reviewer still believes there is misconduct, it must be referred for investigation. And if that investigation determines likely misconduct, an inquiry in which the student is able to make statements and call witnesses must proceed before a penalty is imposed.

Despite final marks being posted to ANU students almost a fortnight ago, Dr Kurniawati only told them by email on Monday of the 30 per cent penalty.

It is unclear how penalising students who have not been proven to have engaged in academic misconduct interacts with the ANU’s rules, which are set out under federal legislation.

In a statement, a university spokesman said it was working with students to clarify the situation and ensure that all marks for the course were appropriate.

“The university is aware of a situation surrounding alleged academic misconduct for an assessment for one course in the ANU College of Engineering and Computer Science,” the spokesman said.

“Students are able to score 100 in total for the course.”

The ANU did not provide evidence that this had been communicated to students when asked.

Dr Kurniawati referred to the university’s response when contacted for comment.



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Finland should test its entire population to avoid a shutdown.


Back in March, Finland avoided high infection and mortality rates from Covid 19 by going into an almost total shutdown. The government temporarily adopted existing emergency laws and among other measures, ordered the closure of the country’s borders, restaurants, and schools, limited public gatherings, and encouraged everyone who can work from home to do so. 

Fast forward eight months, and we are back in the same situation. Infection rates are rising and so are the number of hospitalised patients and deaths from Covid-19 complications.

The number of new cases is approaching 500 a day, over four times the highest numbers we had in April. New cases are increasing by 10% a day and over 2% of tests return positive. One country after another is going to shut down again, and some doctors are asking for the same in Finland.

Testing, contact tracing, and quarantines have formed the pillars of the fight against the spread of the Sars-CoV-2 virus. These are all costly. Testing alone is costing Finland 117 million euros every month and is estimated to add up to 1,4 billion euros for one year. 

Vaccines are lighting the end of the tunnel but we need a transient solution. 

It will take time before the majority of the population is vaccinated. Another shut down would also be very costly and devastating to businesses. The shutdown last spring cost Finland 1.2 billion euros a week! However, Finland has a smarter option now. We could test the entire population, isolate the infected and shut down the virus, not the society. This together with effective contact tracing and enforced quarantines and mask use would keep the country open until herd immunity from vaccination takes effect. A strategy based on these measures would need more effort but will be less costly than a shutdown.

 

Test the entire population

This can be done in a cost-effective and fast way: Group testing.

Group or Pool testing has been used successfully in many countries. This method, which was first used in the 1940s, combines samples of groups of people. An equal number of samples collected from nasal and throat swabs are mixed together and tested once. Bundles that test negative are put aside, but if a group-sample tests positive, every single sample in that group is then retested individually. There are different methods of doing this and there are mathematical calculations on what group sizes suit Finland’s different areas with different infection rates.

China used this method for testing 10 million Wuhan residents in only around two weeks. Other countries also used this method successfully. Last month, Slovakia tested half of its population – 2.5 million people – in one day. 25,850 of them tested positive. 

Finland is ideal for pool testing because of the relatively low percentage of infections, small population, and concentration of the infections in a few areas. Even mass testing of the most affected urban population would be highly effective in slowing down the spread.

 

Enforce quarantines

Finns returning from abroad or exposed to confirmed cases have been asked to stay in isolation for two weeks. These voluntary quarantines have hardly been watertight. Controlled and enforced quarantines of the infected and high-risk people have had a significant effect in controlling the spread in China, New Zealand, and South Korea. 

Those testing positive or with close contact with an infected person must be put in strict and enforced quarantine controlled by electronic measure. The same should be done for all travelers entering the country. Those who break the quarantine should be fined. Ankle monitors or other means of control should be used and serious fines for those who break the quarantine should be issued. 

Trust in citizens would be great if it would work. We have installed thousands of speed cameras in the country and are sending over 70 000 tickets, finning the nation 50 million euros per year. Covid-19 has already killed more people than road accidents in Finland.

 

Make face masks mandatory

The same goes for face masks. Authorities messed up this one by even actively discouraging people from wearing them. Now that masks are widely available and affordable, it shouldn’t be a choice. Face masks work.  When worn properly, a mask reduces the droplets and aerosols leaving an infected person’s breath, and a mask stops or reduces the aerosols reaching a healthy person wearing it. Evidence has accumulated on this topic. Far Eastern nations that are used to wearing a face mask in public have had lower transmission rates. Last March, the Czech Republic, and Slovakia were the only two countries in Europe that made wearing a mask mandatory. After the government decree, Czechs and Slovaks went to work to make millions of homemade masks. The result was a dramatic slow down in the spread of the virus. The Czech Republic became the most successful country in Europe in the fight against Covid-19.

In contrast, when this October a return to mandatory mask-wearing was ditched by a seemingly political decision, the country’s infection rates skyrocketed to over 580 000 cases. 

We were not prepared for this strategy back in March, but now we are. We have the testing and tracing capacity; hopefully.

It’s easier to take the lazy decision of shutting down the country, but it would be irresponsible and harmful. The Finnish “Sisu” demands a fight, not a retreat.  

Alexis Kouros

Helsinki Times


Alexis Kouros is the Editor in Chief of Helsinki Times

He is also a medical doctor with a focus on public health and epidemiology

 

 

 



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Bob Dylan’s entire music catalogue bought by Universal Music


Bob Dylan’s entire catalogue of songs, one of the great treasures in music history, has been acquired by Universal Music Publishing Group for an undisclosed sum. 

The catalogue includes such modern standards as Blowin’ In The WindThe Times They Are a-Changin’Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door and Like a Rolling Stone. That body of work may only be matched by the Beatles — whose songs were re-acquired by Paul McCartney in 2017 after changing hands several times — for its breadth and influence.

Dylan topped the Rolling Stone list of the 100 Greatest Songwriters of All Time in 2015 and the song Like A Rolling Stone was named by the magazine as the best ever written. 

Dylan was influenced by the bluesman Robert Johnson and folk singer, songwriter Woody Guthrie, but added a lyrical depth to his music that eventually earned him the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2016. He is the only songwriter to receive the award. 

Financial terms were not disclosed Monday, but the catalogue may be the most prized in the music industry. Four years ago, when Michael Jackson’s estate sold the remaining half-share that it owned in the artist’s catalogue, it fetched $750 million US.

“Brilliant and moving, inspiring and beautiful, insightful and provocative, his songs are timeless — whether they were written more than half a century ago or yesterday,” said Sir Lucian Grainge, CEO of Universal Music Group, in a prepared statement. 

Dylan’s songs have been recorded more than 6,000 times, by various artists from dozens of countries, cultures and music genres.

Notable releases include the Byrds’ chart-topping version of Mr. Tambourine Man, Peter, Paul and Mary’s Blowin’ in the Wind and Jimi Hendrix’s reworking of All Along the Watchtower.

Joan Baez, Bryan Ferry and the folk singer Odetta put out tribute albums, though his overall influence cannot be measured. Patti Smith, Adele and Sting contributed to an album honouring Dylan for his human rights work in 2012. 

Unpublished lyrics sold at auction

The sale of Dylan’s musical catalogue comes a few weeks after the Jewish singer-songwriter’s musings about anti-Semitism and unpublished song lyrics sold at auction for a total of $495,000 US.

It also follows Stevie Nicks’ recent sale of the majority stake of her music to the publisher and talent management company Primary Wave.

Dylan first entered the public consciousness with New York City’s Greenwich Village folk scene during the early 1960s. When he brought an electric guitar on stage in 1965, he split the music community over what was then considered a radical stylistic choice for a musician. 

Dylan then produced three albums back-to-back in just over a year that changed the course of rock ‘n’ roll that decade, starting with Bringing It All Back Home.

Dylan has sold more than 125 million records globally. 



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Bob Dylan’s entire back catalogue bought in nine-figure deal | Ents & Arts News


Bob Dylan’s entire back catalogue of hundreds of songs has been acquired by Universal Music Group in a nine-figure deal.

The agreement, one of the largest in recent years, covers the copyrights to 600 of the 79-year-old US musician’s tracks, from 1962’s anthemic Blowin’ In The Wind and 1964’s The Times They Are A-Changin, to this year’s acclaimed Murder Most Foul.

It is understood that the catalogue was acquired from the artist himself.

Someone with knowledge of the deal has told Sky News it is worth nine figures, and The New York Times estimated it at more than $300m (£226m).

Image:
Dylan first emerged in the spotlight in the 1960s

Universal Music Group (UMG) – which is headquartered in Los Angeles – is among the world’s largest publishing companies and represents songwriters and their back catalogue including Sir Elton John, Bernie Taupin, Adele, Abba, Coldplay and The Clash.

Jody Gerson, chairman and chief executive of the company’s publishing division, said: “To represent the body of work of one of the greatest songwriters of all time – whose cultural importance can’t be overstated – is both a privilege and a responsibility.”

In recent years, Dylan’s catalogue of music has been administered by Universal rival Sony/ATV outside the US and by the singer-songwriter’s own operations inside it.

One of the music industry’s most influential and ground-breaking artists of all time, Dylan emerged from New York City’s Greenwich Village folk music scene in the early 1960s.

Born in Minnesota, Dylan was also the first songwriter to receive the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2016, with the Swedish academy crediting him with “having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition”.

His songs have been recorded more than 6,000 times by a wide variety of artists from Adele to Jimi Hendrix, who have found both commercial and critical success with covers.

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The news follows recent high-profile UMG signings including Taylor Swift, Billie Eilish and Kendrick Lamar.

Sir Lucian Grainge, chief executive of Universal Music Group, said it is “no secret that the art of songwriting is the fundamental key to all great music, nor is it a secret that Bob is one of the very greatest practitioners of that art”.

He added: “Brilliant and moving, inspiring and beautiful, insightful and provocative, his songs are timeless – whether they were written more than half a century ago or yesterday.

“I have no doubt that decades, even centuries from now, the words and music of Bob Dylan will continue to be sung and played – and cherished – everywhere.”



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Eton free-range egg producer discovers ‘entire egg inside another’ in rare poultry phenomenon


An extra-large egg laid at a free-range farm in North Queensland has been found with a cracking surprise inside — another egg.

Eton farmer Deb McLucas was grading eggs when she put one aside to investigate as it was so large it wouldn’t fit in their boxes.

“We saw this particularly large egg, and anything a bit different we always like to crack those ones and see what’s going on inside,” Ms McLucas said.

The farm had recently welcomed a new flock of 1,000 pullets (young hens) in response to the surging demand for locally grown eggs during COVID-19.

Ms McLucas said it was one of these hens which likely created the exceptional find.

“[Young hens] are when you get the most double yolkers as well because their hormonal systems are not quite in sync.

“They’re still getting the hang of producing the egg and knowing exactly when to put that shell around.”

Grading about 10,000 eggs each week, farmer Deb McLucas says it is not the first odd egg find.(ABC Rural: Melanie Groves)

Extra-large egg is no ‘yolk’

In the six years that Ms McLucas has been farming free-range chickens, this is the second time a double-shelled egg has been found.

Ms McLucas and staff grade about 10,000 eggs every week, which are sold locally at shops and markets.

But don’t expect to see a double-shelled egg in your supermarket any time soon — the egg was so large it didn’t even make it to the grader.

three low tin sheds in the background with red hens foraging across a grassy field.
A young pullet on the farm is likely responsible for the discovery.(ABC Rural: Melanie Groves)

On a grading table, a light would normally shine through the shell to check the quality and spot any issues before being sold to the public.

“We’re pretty experienced at identifying these things now,” Ms McLucas said.

“You get to know what’s going to be different and what it might be, so that’s how it got put aside.



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Sydney Roosters and NSW Blues captain Boyd Cordner may miss entire 2021 NRL season after State of Origin head knock


This column has spoken to several of Cordner’s closest confidantes, who all believe the back-rower needs some time away from the sport to properly consider his options and priorities without the emotion of the ordeal clouding his judgment.

The tragic death of his cousin Joel Dark earlier in the year following a head knock during a local first-grade game in Newcastle is still weighing heavily on Cordner’s mind.

Boyd Cordner is assisted off Adelaide Oval for a head injury assessment by Roosters and Blues trainer Travis Touma.Credit:Getty

The innocuous collision with Queensland’s Felise Kaufusi at the Adelaide Oval last week, coupled with Cordner’s history of head knocks, appears to have decreased the level of impact required to trigger a concussion. There is a hope that an extended period out of the game without any contact sport may help him build up a resilience to head knocks. The hiatus could also provide him with time to realise that things may never change.

Cordner left the Blues bubble a few nights ago and has returned home, where friends and family have been offering their support. One of the conversations that will no doubt be had will be pointing out all he has achieved throughout a decorated career, achieving more before the age of 28 than most players could ever dream, including three premierships, three State of Origin series victories and a World Cup.

The first priority for the Roosters is Cordner’s welfare, but there will come a time in the not too distant future where they will have to start thinking about the financial implications of having their $750,000-a-season captain sitting at home.

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Like the Bulldogs did after Kieran Foran was injured playing for New Zealand at the end of last year, the Roosters will be entitled to apply to an insurer for partial salary relief. If that was to occur, Cordner would not be able to play in the first three rounds of the 2021 season.

The other element is whether the NRL will provide the Roosters with salary-cap dispensation if Cordner decides to take 12 months out of the game. While no one at the Roosters wants to play next year without their inspirational leader, it could solve the salary-cap conundrum the club currently finds itself in.

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Cricket Australia don’t know if Virat Kohli will stay in Australia for entire India tour


However, his plans around the birth of his child and whether or not he could return home before the tour ends in January have not yet been made clear.

CA executives have been so occupied getting the summer fixtures over the line they haven’t asked – although they’ve taken comfort from his inclusion in the tour party.

As usual Virat Kohli shapes a hugely influential figure for India this summer.Credit:AP

“He’s in the squad … I think that’s a matter for Virat,” said Nick Hockley, CA’s interim CEO, when asked about the Indian maestro at the SCG on Wednesday.

As for the Indian families in general, the NSW government has built provisions into the quarantine plan for the tourists but their arrivals would need to be approved by Australian Border Force.

BCCI president Sourav Ganguly told The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age this week that India had requested families be allowed in because players would have already been a bubble for the Indian Premier League in the UAE for 80 days. A CA source said the Indian team had asked to have about a dozen family members allowed into the country.

“We’re working through that at the moment with the BCCI and the Australian government,” Hockley said. “It will have to be a compelling case obviously for families to come.”

India tour of Australia 2020/21

ODIs

  • November 27, SCG (D/N)
  • November 29, SCG (D/N)
  • December 2, Manuka Oval (D/N)

T20s

  • December 4, Manuka Oval (N)
  • December 6, SCG (N)
  • December 8, SCG (N)

Tests

  • December 17-21 , Adelaide Oval (D/N)
  • December 26-30, MCG
  • January 7-11, SCG
  • January 15-19, The Gabba

The India squad will arrive on a charter flight from Dubai with Australian players who featured in the IPL, such as Steve Smith and David Warner, landing in Sydney on November 12.

They will be accommodated on different floors of a hotel at Sydney Olympic Park, which has been booked out by CA for the 14-day quarantine period, and be transported to training during that time at Blacktown International Sportspark.

While the white-ball element of India’s tour takes place in Sydney and Canberra from November 27 to December 8, CA is still relying on the Victoria and Queensland borders being opened for the schedule to be rolled out as it intends.

“We were really encouraged by comments coming out of the national cabinet last week around borders opening before Christmas, so that will allow us to deliver this schedule,” Hockley said.

“As we do before any series we have contingencies, but we’re planning full steam ahead and hopefully we won’t need to use them.”

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Given they effectively stepped in to save the tour, NSW is, as expected, the major winner in the revised fixture list, with Sydney also staging matches between India and Australia A at Drummoyne Oval on December 6-8 and with the pink ball at the SCG on December 11-13, as well as two one-day internationals, two T20 internationals and the New Year’s Test.

It was no surprise then that NSW Tourism Minister Stuart Ayres, who fast-tracked India’s quarantine approval last week after the Queensland government gave cricket the runaround, could not resist at dig at the Labor government north of the border.

“I think this is a classic case of Queensland dropping the ball at second slip and NSW picking it up before it hits the ground,” he said.

The confirmation of the Australia-India matches wasn’t universally well received, however, with WACA chief Christina Matthews unimpressed she wasn’t informed the announcement was coming. Perth missed out on hosting an international this summer because of Western Australia’s hard border.

“It was all a bit of a shock to us because we didn’t know there was going to be an announcement today,” Matthews said. “We were notified effectively when we were still in bed. I woke up and saw the media release.

“As we know on the east coast they forget there’s a three-hour time difference and that we actually exist.”

Matthews said CA later apologised for the breakdown in communication.

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BTS Rule The World Songs Ranking By Charting An Entire Album At Once…And Then Some


After re-releasing their 2014 EP Skool Luv Affair a little over a week ago, BTS are now reaping the rewards on a number of Billboard charts, especially the ones that focus solely on “world” music. The South Korean septet have come to know those tallies especially well, and this frame they dominate the World Digital Song Sales ranking, which they have managed many times before.

This week, BTS occupy 14 of the 25 spots on the World Digital Song Sales chart, with almost all of those winning cuts coming from Skool Luv Affair. In fact, all 10 tunes featured on the original tracklist are present on the tally this time around, as well as two on the special edition.

Some of those songs featured on Skool Luv Affair had already reached the World Digital Song Sales chart in the past, while others weren’t popular enough at the time…but now things are very different for BTS. In total, half a dozen cuts from the band return to the list, another half a dozen appear for the first time, and two are holdovers from last frame.

The seven-member vocal band claims ownership over more than half of the top 10 this week, either debuting or sending six tracks into the highest tier on the World Digital Song Sales chart. Their surge forces almost every other non-BTS single on the roster to fall, at least those that aren’t also debuts.

Believe it or not, filling 14 of the 25 spots on the World Digital Song Sales chart isn’t a record for BTS, who have accomplished much, much more before…though that’s not to say that this week’s showing isn’t still an incredible display of power and popularity that very few artists could muster on any Billboard ranking.

Below is a look at where all 14 of BTS’ tracks rank on this week’s World Digital Song Sales chart.

MORE FROM FORBESBTS Score Their First-Ever Placement On Billboard’s Rap Albums Chart

No. 3 – “Boy In Luv”

No. 5 – “Just One Day”

No. 6 – “Jump”

No. 7 – “Tomorrow”

No. 9 – “Intro: Skool Luv Affair”

No. 10 – “Where You From”

No. 13 – “Outro: Propose”

No. 14 – “Miss Right”

No. 15 – “Spine Breaker”

No. 16 – “Like”

No. 17 – “Cypher, Pt. 2: Triptych”

No. 23 – “Stay Gold”

No. 24 – “Filter”

No. 25 – “My Time”

MORE FROM FORBESGrammy Predictions 2021: BTS, Beyoncé, Lady Gaga, Taylor Swift And Ariana Grande For Record Of The Year



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