Shanghai escalates Covid lockdown restrictions

File Photo A worker takes a swab sample for a COVID-19 test at a mobile testing site on Tuesday, March 15, 2022, in Beijing. Photo Courtesy: AP

(BBC): Authorities in Shanghai have said they will tighten the enforcement of lockdown measures, as a Covid surge continues in China’s financial capital. New measures include placing electronic door alarms to prevent those infected from leaving, as well as evacuating people to disinfect their homes. Earlier this week, hundreds were forcibly evacuated from their homes… Continue reading Shanghai escalates Covid lockdown restrictions

Guangzhou closes to most arrivals as China’s outbreak grows

Workers in protective gear watch over residents line up for the COVID-19 test at a residential block, Monday, April 11, 2022, in Guangzhou in south China's Guangdong province. Photo Courtesy: Chinatopix via AP

BEIJING (AP): The manufacturing hub of Guangzhou closed itself to most arrivals Monday as China battles a major COVID-19 surge in its big eastern cities. Shanghai has taken the brunt of the rise, with another 26,087 cases announced on Monday, only 914 of which showed symptoms. The city of 26 million is under a tight… Continue reading Guangzhou closes to most arrivals as China’s outbreak grows

End of COVID may bring major turbulence for US health care

WASHINGTON (AP): When the end of the COVID-19 pandemic comes, it could create major disruptions for a cumbersome U.S. health care system made more generous, flexible and up-to-date technologically through a raft of temporary emergency measures. Winding down those policies could begin as early as the summer. That could force an estimated 15 million Medicaid… Continue reading End of COVID may bring major turbulence for US health care

China reports first COVID-19 deaths in more than a year

File Photo A worker takes a swab sample for a COVID-19 test at a mobile testing site on Tuesday, March 15, 2022, in Beijing. Photo Courtesy: AP

BEIJING (AP): China’s health authorities reported two COVID-19 deaths on Saturday, the first since January 2021, as the country battles its worst outbreak in two years driven by a surge in the highly transmissible omicron variant. The deaths, both in northeastern Jilin province, bring the country’s coronavirus death toll to 4,638. Both fatalities occurred in… Continue reading China reports first COVID-19 deaths in more than a year

China: Businesses shut as officials widen Covid lockdowns

File Photo In this photo released by China's Xinhua News Agency, a worker wearing protective gear gives a COVID-19 test to a woman at a testing site in Xi'an in northwestern China's Shaanxi Province, Tuesday, Jan. 4, 2022. Photo Courtesy: Xinhua via AP

(BBC): Multinational companies have halted some operations as China widens its Covid lockdowns – among its biggest since the start of the pandemic. Tens of millions of people across the country face restrictions, including the entire Jilin province and technology hub Shenzhen, as authorities report record numbers of cases. Toyota, Volkswagen and Apple supplier Foxconn… Continue reading China: Businesses shut as officials widen Covid lockdowns

Death toll surpasses 6 million for pandemic now in 3rd year

File Photo In this May 1, 2021, file photo, relatives carry the body of a person who died of COVID-19 as multiple pyres of other COVID-19 victims burn at a crematorium in New Delhi, India. Photo Courtesy: AP

BANGKOK (AP): The official global death toll from COVID-19 eclipsed 6 million on Monday — underscoring that the pandemic, now entering its third year, is far from over. The milestone, recorded by Johns Hopkins University, is the latest tragic reminder of the unrelenting nature of the pandemic even as people are shedding masks, travel is… Continue reading Death toll surpasses 6 million for pandemic now in 3rd year

Why are COVID vaccination rates still low in some countries?

File Photo Dr. Manjul Shukla transfers Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine into a syringe, Thursday, Dec. 2, 2021, at a mobile vaccination clinic in Worcester, Mass. Photo Courtesy: AP

(AP): Why are COVID-19 vaccination rates still low in some countries? Limited supplies remain a problem, but experts say other challenges now include unpredictable deliveries, weak health care systems and vaccine hesitancy. Most countries with low vaccination rates are in Africa. As of late February, 13 countries in Africa have fully vaccinated less than 5%… Continue reading Why are COVID vaccination rates still low in some countries?

Hong Kong orders mandatory COVID-19 tests for all residents

Residents line up to get tested for the coronavirus at a temporary testing center despite the rain in Hong Kong, Tuesday, Feb. 22, 2022. Photo Courtesy: AP

HONG KONG (AP): Hong Kong will test its entire population of 7.5 million people for COVID-19 in March, the city’s leader said Tuesday, as it grapples with its worst outbreak driven by the omicron variant. The population will be tested three times in March, Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam said. She said testing capacity… Continue reading Hong Kong orders mandatory COVID-19 tests for all residents

Japan eases border controls amid criticism as exclusionist

Japan's Prime Minister Fumio Kishida speaks during a news conference in Tokyo, Japan, Thursday, Feb. 17, 2022. Photo Courtesy: AP

TOKYO (AP): Japan announced Thursday it will ease its tough COVID-19 border controls by increasing the number of people allowed to enter each day and reducing quarantine requirements following criticism that its current policy is unscientific and xenophobic. Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said the daily entry cap will be raised to 5,000, including Japanese citizens… Continue reading Japan eases border controls amid criticism as exclusionist