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Everyone wants to know when the coronavirus crisis will end, and Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates has an idea. But his estimate varies based on whether you live in the developing world or in wealthier countries such as the United States.
“The innovation pipeline on scaling up diagnostics, on new therapeutics, on vaccines is actually quite impressive,” Gates told Wired magazine in an interview published Friday. “And that makes me feel like, for the rich world, we should largely be able to end this thing by the end of 2021, and for the world at large by the end of 2022.”
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Gates, who funds medical research and vaccine programs through the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, is no Pollyanna. He’s well aware that even if his prediction comes to pass, the outbreak has set countries of all sizes back years as far as economic growth and progress in fighting malaria, polio and HIV.
In the interview, Gates has harsh words for the US testing system, and airs his frustrations with how President Donald Trump and his administration have dealt with the situation. This isn’t new — Gates hasn’t been afraid to speak out about the US response to the virus, telling CNN the high number of coronavirus cases in the US is due to lack of testing and contact tracing, as well as resistance to wear face masks. Gates himself has been a target for conspiracy theories and falsehoods about the virus.
But Gates does believe a vaccine eventually will be created, noting that due to scale and manufacturing issues, some of the vaccines under development are likely to only help in wealthier countries.
“It’s because of innovation that you don’t have to contemplate an even sadder statement, which is this thing will be raging for five years until natural immunity is our only hope,” Gates said. “This disease, from both the animal data and the phase 1 data, seems to be very vaccine-preventable.”
As far as treatment for those who already have the disease, Gates spoke highly of the antiviral medication remdesivir and the corticosteroid dexamethasone.
“Other antivirals are two to three months away,” he said. “Antibodies are two to three months away. We’ve had about a factor-of-two improvement in hospital outcomes already, and that’s with just remdesivir and dexamethasone. These other things will be additive to that.”
In a televised address, Lebanese PM Hassan Diab said he would ask for early elections as a way out of the crisis. The issue will be discussed in cabinet on Monday.
Lebanon was already mired in a deep economic crisis and struggling to tackle the coronavirus pandemic before the explosion tore through Beirut.
An anti-government protest movement erupted last October, fuelled by the financial situation and a collapsing currency.
What’s happening on Sunday?
French President Emmanuel Macron visited Beirut on Thursday, and announced he wanted to coordinate international aid for the country.
A statement from France’s presidential palace says Sunday’s conference “will aim to mobilize Lebanon’s main international partners and to organize and coordinate emergency support from the international community”.
Representatives from European Union member states, China, Russia, Egypt, Jordan and the UK will all take part, with many others invited to attend.
In a series of tweets, President Trump said he had discussed the “catastrophic event” in Beirut with Mr Macron and would himself join the call.
A number of countries have already pledged millions of dollars worth of aid and sent ships, health workers and materiel to assist Beirut.
But UN agencies have called for more help and warned about the massive challenge ahead. Many homes are without water or electricity, there are growing worries about food shortages, and cases of Covid-19 are spiking in the country – an additional challenge for hospitals which are already overwhelmed.
“The needs are immediate and they are huge,” Unicef spokeswoman Marixie Mercado told reporters in Geneva on Friday.
What happened at the protests?
The aid conference comes amid ongoing fury about the government’s failure to stop the blast.
Between 5,000 and 10,000 people gathered for demonstrations on Saturday, to show that rage and also to remember those victims of the explosion.
As the protests got under way, mock gallows were erected in Martyrs’ Square to indicate the demonstrators’ view of the country’s political leaders.
Skirmishes began early on, with police responding to rocks and sticks thrown by protesters with rubber bullets and tear gas.
Police confirmed to Reuters news agency that live ammunition had been fired in central Beirut, though it is not clear by whom.
One officer died after falling into a lift-shaft in a hotel, reportedly after being chased there by protesters.
The local Red Cross said it treated 117 injured people at the scene. Another 55 were taken to hospital.
Dozens of protesters stormed government ministries and the headquarters of the country’s banking association.
The raids started after a group of people chanting anti-government slogans and burning a portrait of President Michel Aoun entered the foreign ministry and called for all ministries to be occupied.
Reports suggest security forces have since retaken the buildings from the demonstrators.
Victoria has a warehouse containing “19 million surgical masks” along with other items of personal protective equipment, Premier Daniel Andrews says, but accessing supplies was “very challenging” due to worldwide demand amid the coronavirus global pandemic.
Healthcare workers say they are struggling wearing PPE for long hours, with added concerns the equipment is not of a standard that will prevent transmission
Daniel Andrews says Victoria’s supply of PPE is “adequate” but acknowledged the worldwide demand makes accessing supplies “challenging”
Nick Coatsworth says frontline workers in Victoria should seek help if their mental health is suffering due to the pandemic
A recent survey conducted by the Australian College of Nursing found nurses were also struggling wearing PPE for long hours, with some suffering bruising from wearing masks.
Within 48 hours, 1,500 responses from nurses reported that having access to appropriate and safe personal protective equipment was one of the main concerns raised, along with the issues of wearing it all day.
They called for more support from management and a safe place to share concerns and unload the mental burden.
They also asked not to be judged if they contract the virus, saying they were at risk like everyone else in the community.
There have been more than 1,500 Victorian healthcare workers infected since the pandemic began.
Asked at his daily coronavirus briefing about reports of “shortages of PPE”, Mr Andrews was adamant there were “adequate supplies” — but acknowledged “everybody in the world is after this at the same time”.
He was not pressed on whether the supplies of “surgical masks” provide the suitable level of protection needed against the coronavirus, by providing a more snug fit against the wearer’s face than masks described as being of a surgical model.
In July, Mr Andrews said the State Government would order millions more reusable masks for community distribution and boost local manufacturing capabilities.
On Saturday, he said he could confirm “we approved a whole lot of additional orders”.
“Everybody in the world is after this at the same time. That always makes it very challenging,” he said.
“There are adequate stocks. An enormous amount of work has gone [to procure] that PPE, it’s sitting in the warehouse.”
Australian College of Nursing chief executive Kylie Ward said healthcare workers “can’t access what [PPE] they need when they need”.
She said many nurses were feeling scared and in need of emotional support.
Professor Ward said the ACN was in the final stages of compiling a national COVID-19 strategy response to address issues nurses are facing across the healthcare system.
Get help if you need it, DCMO urges
Later on Saturday, the Deputy Chief Medical Officer Nick Coatsworth said he had been in “personal communication with the Victorian Chief Medical Officer [Brett Sutton] in the past weeks and that, amongst other things, has led to a significant change in Victoria’s P2 and N95 masks policy”.
Dr Coatsworth said he understood the stress on healthcare workers in Victoria.
“What I would strongly encourage all Victorians to do, if that is not reason enough to support the stage for restrictions, do everything you possibly can to bring these numbers down, for healthcare workers and residential aged care workers.
“And my colleagues in Victoria, please avail yourself of assistance if you are feeling that way. Whether that is formal assistance, often through your general practitioner, whether it’s going through the Black Dog Institute or talking with colleagues.”
Victoria Police have fined almost 200 people in the past 24 hours for breaching the state’s strict lockdown laws.
Sixty-two people have been caught by police for breaking curfew, while 39 people were fined $200 for failing to wear a face covering while out in public.
‘Surgical masks’ insufficient for high level contact: AMA
AMA federal president Omar Khorshid said health authorities in Victoria had realised PPE classified as surgical masks were “not appropriate in high-risk circumstances”, such as practitioners attending large numbers of COVID patients — hence the change in mask policy.
The change in policy, Dr Khorsid said, was in part due to the recognition the illness is “not just spread by droplets” but that when “aerosolised”, the virus can “hang in the air”.
Transmission can occur, he said, when “someone enters a room two minutes after someone has been in there coughing”.
“I hear there is appropriate access to P2 or N95 masks at the moment in those Victorian hospitals … [but] I don’t believe the ordinary GP has access to those masks when seeing patients in their clinics. If they want N95 [mask supplies] they have to find it themselves.”
Dr Khorshid said he could not speak for the aged care sector beyond that the DHHS is now requiring staff attending to COVID-19 patients “should” have access to the higher level of masks.
“We are seeing hundreds and hundreds [of healthcare workers] being infected … whilst they thought early on as they might have been infected at home, or in the community or in the tea room, now it is thought that it has happened in a workplace setting,” he said.
At the moment, Victoria is the only state to require the higher level of protection for those in frequent contact with coronavirus patients, he said.
“The AMA has been complaining that anyone who comes into contact should be equipped with that higher level of protection.”
In a statement, Minister for Health Jenny Mikakos said there was “sufficient PPE for all our healthcare workers”.
“We’re providing PPE to all our hospitals and have millions of items of PPE arriving at our warehouse regularly, ready to be distributed to all hospitals.”
Ms Mikakos said Victoria’s hospitals have “strict guidelines that protect the health, safety and wellbeing of our healthcare workers. Staff who are directly involved in treating patients across Victoria must wear eye protection and a surgical mask”.
Dr Fauci warned that the “public health approach must never be abandoned”, as it may prove near impossible to develop a vaccine that is as high as 98% effective.
This means Americans should maintain social distancing and wear face coverings in enclosed spaces or large crowds to stop the spread of the virus.
On Friday, the US drugs regulator revealed independent experts would have to review any vaccine before it is approved.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said it would organise an outside advisory committee before giving the green light, in an apparent bid to reassure people it will not cut corners in the race to offer immunity.
Dr Fauci also urged states to react as quickly as possible to increases of just 1% or 2% in coronavirus cases.
It comes after the US death toll surpassed 160,000 with 4.91 million cases reported nationwide.
The US accounts for nearly a quarter of the world’s virus deaths, in front of Brazil, Mexico and the UK, which have the next highest numbers of fatalities.
States are currently considering whether schools should reopen in the coming weeks.
Several – including California, Texas and Florida – have had to go back into lockdown after large spikes in cases.
Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden was forced to accept his Wisconsin nomination virtually in the latest virus setback to the November election.
The men’s 2020 World Cup that was thanks to be played in Australia later on this yr will now be performed in 2022.
There will be an additional men’s 2020 Globe Cup in India up coming calendar year, showcasing the teams that ended up intended to play in 2020
Cricket Australia needs fans from all around the environment to be able to go to in 2022
The women’s 50-about Entire world Cup slated for 2021 in New Zealand has been moved to 2022 as effectively
It will come right after the ICC announced in July that the Environment Cup would have to be moved from its Oct-November slot this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The event, now remaining held in Oct and November of 2022, will arrive after another men’s T20 Entire world Cup in India from October 17 to November 14 upcoming year.
Cricket Australia reported pushing the 2020 version back two several years intended enthusiasts of groups from about the globe really should be ready to go to video games.
“This decision gives Australia a little something to seem forward to in 2022. It also gives us a excellent possibility of securely welcoming admirers into the outstanding venues across the place to appreciate seeing the world’s most effective cricketers contend in this big world-wide function,” Cricket Australia chief executive Nick Hockley claimed.
“We would like to thank our government associates and venues for their continued assist and we are doing the job closely with them to retain the exact same host town and venue footprint set up for the 2020 match, to the fullest extent possible.”
All the teams that qualified for the 2020 men’s match will participate in in 2021 in India, but there will be a new qualifying procedure for the 2022 Earth Cup.
Persons who experienced tickets for the 2020 video games will be refunded in entire, with a revised schedule to be declared.
Coronavirus has also pressured the women’s 50-in excess of Entire world Cup that was slated for 2021 in New Zealand to move to a February-March 2022 program, with the remaining qualifying online games to be played in 2021.
“There has been no women’s worldwide cricket performed because the summary of the ICC Women’s T20 Entire world Cup earlier this yr and due to the different effect of COVID-19 globally, that is probable to continue being the scenario for a selection of the teams,” ICC chief executive Manu Sawhney explained.
“Moving the occasion by 12 months provides all competing teams the chance to play a enough amount of cricket ahead of both equally the qualification celebration and main into a Cricket Entire world Cup so the integrity of the event is taken care of.”
MOSCOW: Russia will register its first vaccine against the coronavirus on August 12, Deputy Health Minister Oleg Gridnev said on Friday. The vaccine has been developed jointly by the Gamaleya Research Institute and the Russian Defence Ministry. “The vaccine developed by the Gamaleya centre will be registered on August 12. At the moment, the last, third, stage is underway. The trials are extremely important. We have to understand that the vaccine must be safe. Medical professionals and senior citizens will be the first to get vaccinated,” Gridnev told reporters at the opening of a cancer centre building in the city of Ufa. According to the minister, the effectiveness of the vaccine will be judged when the population immunity has formed. Clinical trials of the vaccine began on June 18 and included 38 volunteers. All of the participants developed immunity. The first group was discharged on July 15 and the second group on July 20.
GENEVA, August 7. /TASS/. The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the world exceeded 18.61 mln, increasing by more than 259,000 people in 24 hours. According to data released by the World Health Organization (WHO), the number of deaths increased by more than 6,000 and exceeded 702,000.
Thus, 18,614,177 infected and 702,642 deaths were registered globally. The number of infected increased by 259,344 per day, the number of deaths increased by 6,488.
The day before, 206,709 cases and 5,116 deaths were reported. The organization’s statistics take into account only officially confirmed information on cases of infection and death provided by states.
The North and South America region ranks first in terms of the number of cases – 9,981,204. Over the day, this figure increased by 139,362. The number of deaths increased by 4,074 and reached 372,008. In the European Region, 3,477,225 infected and 215,168 deaths were registered. In 24 hours, the number of infected people increased by 25,178, 430 people died.
The third place in the number of people infected in the world is occupied by the region of Southeast Asia. The number of cases in the region reached 2,360,721, 49,572 deaths were reported. Over the day, the number of cases rose by 61,288, deaths – by 1,003.
The United States has the biggest number of cases – 4,728,239, followed by Brazil (2,801,921), India (1,964,536), Russia (871,894), South Africa (529,877), Mexico (449,961), Peru (439,890) , Chile (364 723), Colombia (334 979), and Iran (317 483).