CANADA IS ALREADY IN THE SECOND WAVE OF COVID-19
After the Thursday’s Throne Speech, Canada’s Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau addressed the Canadian people, saying that the country is already in the second wave of COVID-19.
Trudeau outlined the Government of Canada‘s plan to guide the country through the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
Trudeau delivered the address from his office on Parliament Hill.
“In our four biggest provinces, the second wave isn’t just starting, it’s already underway,” Trudeau said. “We’re on the brink of a fall that could be much worse than the spring.”
Trudeau implored Canadians to take the necessary precautions to protect themselves, saying that now is not the time to join parties and other social gatherings. He added that noone is invincible from COVID-19.
Trudeau reiterated points made by his government during the Throne speech, including:
- help provinces ramp up testing
- extend the wage subsidy for businesses
- create a national child care system
- national standard for long term care
- a green recovery plan for the economy
Watch Trudeau’s address here:
CANADA AT A COVID-19 CROSSROADS, ACCORDING TO TOP DOCTOR
2020-09-22 – Canada’s chief public health officer has issued a dire warning, telling Canadians that there will be a dramatic resurgence of COVID-19 cases unless immediate action is taken.
“We don’t want it to go up a giant ski hill,” Dr. Teresa Tam said during a press conference held by the Public Health Agency of Canada.
According to Dr. Tam, the latest modelling is predicting up to 155,795 confirmed cases of COVID-19 by October, and up to 9,300 deaths, if the current trajectory of the pandemic continues.
Tam reiterated the need for all Canadians to act immediately to limit their contacts before the situation worsens.
“Canada is at a crossroads and individual action to reduce contact rates will decide our path,” Dr. Tam said.
The Government of Canada‘s Minister of Health Patty Hajdu agreed with Dr. Tam, strongly advising people to think twice before accepting invitations to join social gatherings.
“All of us have the future in our hands,” Minister Hajdu said.
Minister Hajdu said that the spread of COVID-19 is not the same across Canada, nor is it spreading at the same rate across provinces and territories.
A more “surgical approach” is necessary, according to Minister Hajdu.
CANADA WILL SPEND CAD$1 BILLION TO BUY COVID-19 VACCINES
2020-09-22 The Government of Canada’s Minister for Procurement Anita Anand said that Canada has entered a deal with more manufacturers to purchases COVID-19 vaccines.
New deals have been reached with Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline, which will see a total of 72 million doses of their COVID-19 vaccines be made available to Canadians, which have recently entered the second phase of trials.
The Government of Canada has now committed to spending CAD$1 billion to buy a minimum of 154 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines from five different manufacturers, including Moderna, Pfizer, Novavax and Johnson & Johnson.
None of the vaccines currently being developed have completed the necessary clinical trials, nor have any of them been approved for use by Health Canada.
Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline had indicated that their vaccine candidates will receive approval for use in Canada by 2021.
“We need to make a substantial investment in order to ensure that Canada is well positioned to secure access to the successful vaccine or vaccines,” Minister Anand said. “The way in which we are doing that is to bet on multiple horses at the same time in order to ensure that as one or more of those horses crosses the finish line, we have access to those vaccines.”
Minister Anand also announced that an agreement has been made with Gilead Sciences and McKesson Canada for 150,000 vials of Remdesivir.
Remdesivir is already approved for use with COVID-19 patients in Canada.
Canada is part of the COVAX Facility, an international vaccine cooperative that is composed of wealthy countries that will invest in doses of vaccines to share with middle to low-income countries.
Countries that are part of the COVAX Facility, like Canada, will get access to COVID-19 vaccines and be required to provide funding for doses to be made available to middle to low-income countries.
ENOUGH PEOPLE HAVE TO TAKE VACCINE TO BE EFFECTIVE
2020-09-17 Dr. Anthony Fauci, the top infectious disease official in the United States Government said that if too few people get the COVID-19 vaccine when it becomes available, it is unlikely to stop the spread of the deadly disease.
In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Fauci said that vaccinating 1/3 of the US population will not be enough.
“It’s a combination of how effective a vaccine is and how many people use it. If you have a vaccine that is highly effective and not enough people get vaccinated, you’re not going to realize the full, important effect of having a vaccine,” Fauci told the WSJ.
According to Fauci, the goal of any vaccine strategy is to lower the rates of infection to make outbreaks easier to control.
CNN reports that a recent poll conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation found that more than half of Americans would decline to get the vaccine if it was available before the US election.
Fauci thinks that a safe and effective vaccine will be available by the end of 2020.
RICHEST NATIONS HAVE ALREADY SECURED HALF OF THE WORLD’S EXPECTED COVID-19 VACCINE SUPPLY
2020-09-17 According to Oxfam, countries like the United States, Great Britain and Japan have already secured more than half of the world’s expected COVID-19 vaccine supply.
The population of these countries make up only 13% of the world’s total, leaving the rest to scramble for the remaining supplies.
Oxfam used data from Airfinity, an analytics firm that collected data that analyzed publicly available information.
Airfinity found that drug manufacturers, including AstraZeneca, Gamaleya, Moderna, Pfizer and Sinovac, will have a combined capacity to produce 5.4 billion doses of the vaccine, enough to vaccinate 2.97 billion people, which is enough for less than half the world’s total population.
In a statement Oxfam said that “supply deals have already been agreed for 5.303 billion doses, of which 2.728 billion (51%) have been bought by developed countries including the UK, US, Australia, Hong Kong & Macau, Japan, Switzerland and Israel, as well as the European Union.”
POPE FRANCIS UNDER OBSERVATION AFTER MEETING WITH FILIPINO CARDINAL WHO TESTED POSITIVE FOR COVID-19
2020-09-16 The Vatican is keeping Pope Francis under close observation, after meeting with Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, who later tested positive for COVID-19.
In a statement to ANSA, Vatican representatives said they were keeping an eye on Pope’s health.
While there was no immediate concern for the Pope’s health, he remains under constant monitoring, Vatican representatives said.
Pope Francis continues to meet with visitors at the Apostolic Palace, without wearing a non-medical face mask or covering.
He was seen wearing one in public last week for the first time since the start of the pandemic, but removed it to speak with the faithful.
Pope Francis’ last COVID-19 test was in March 2020, after a prelate living in the same residence had tested positive.
2020-09-17 UPDATE: Pope Francis tests negative for COVID-19.
PHILIPPINES RELAXES SOCIAL DISTANCING RULES
2020-09-14 – Medical experts called the Philippine Government’s decision to relax social distancing rules to 12 inches between Filipinos using public transportation “dangerous and premature”.
The new social distancing rules went into effect on Monday, September 14, 2020.
The Philippines continues to see a steady number of new confirmed cases of COVID-19, with the country now having the highest number of cases in Southeast Asia.
Speaking to ANC, Anthony Leachon, an advisor to the Philippine Government’s COVID-19 task force, said that the new social distancing rules will be “risky, reckless and counter-intuitive and will delay the flattening of the curve.”
Medical experts expect an increase of confirmed COVID-19 cases as a result of the new social distancing rules.
Different Philippine Government agencies share the responsibility in establishing COVID-19 policies, resulting in a great deal of overlap and confusion.
The Department of Transportation (DOT) has issued a statement, saying that the minimum distance will be reduced from 1 meter to 75cm on Monday, September 14, 2020 to 50cm on Monday, September 28, 2020. It will be further reduced to 30cm on Monday, October 12, 2020.
The DOT has also forbidden conversation and the use of cellphones on public transportation.
The Department of Health (DOH) is strongly encouraging the public to remain vigilant and choose alternate modes of transportation if possible.
Relaxing social distancing is expected to result in massive lines and overcrowding in public transportation in the coming days.
The Philippines now has 265,888 confirmed cases of COVID-19.
PHILIPPINES CONFIRMED CASES OF COVID-19 NOW MORE THAN 250,000
2020-09-11 – The Philippine Government‘s Department of Health (DOH) added 4,040 confirmed cases of COVID-19, bringing the total to 252,964.
The majority of the new cases were from the following areas:
National Capital Region: 1,813
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