Hard hit by the latest wave of SARS-CoV-2 contamination, India will lift some of the restrictions in some major cities in the country, local authorities announced on Saturday (June 5th). These deconfinement measures come as more than 344,000 people have died from Covid-19 in India.
The SARS-CoV-2 pandemic has killed more than 3.7 million people worldwide since its appearance at the end of 2019, according to the report established on Saturday by Agence France-Presse from sources official. But taking into account the excess mortality directly and indirectly linked to Covid-19, the WHO estimates that the real toll is “Two to three times higher”.
Deconfinement measures in India
Markets and shopping centers in New Delhi will be able to reopen on Monday, which marks a new stage in the deconfinement process, Indian authorities announced on Saturday, in a context of declining Covid-19 contamination in the country’s major cities, after weeks of restrictions.
The capital’s metro will also resume at 50% of its capacity, said the city’s prime minister, Arvind Kejriwal. Markets and malls will operate every other day, with half of them open daily.
Offices can also reopen at 50% capacity, but Kejriwal urged his fellow citizens to work from home instead. The easing comes after Delhi last week allowed the resumption of work in construction and factories.
The state government of Maharashtra – which includes Bombay – has announced a five-step plan to ease restrictions, depending on infection rates and hospital capacity. At level 1 (with an infection rate below 5% and patient bed occupancy rates below 25%), all shops, restaurants and malls will be allowed to reopen. But at level 5 (infection rate above 20%), the restrictions will remain strict.
According to official statistics, daily infections in India are around 120,000, up from over 400,000 in May. The death toll has also fallen, with 3,380 deaths reported in the past 24 hours, although this toll appears to be grossly underestimated.
Belgium will open vaccination to 16-17 year olds
Belgium will open up vaccination against the coronavirus to young people aged 16-17 from July, politicians announced on Saturday at the end of an interministerial conference.
“The vaccination of this age group will be carried out in the wake of that of 18-year-olds. From July, they will start to receive an invitation for the first dose ”, said the ministers of health of this federal state, in a press release.
These injections will be made with the BioNTech-Pfizer vaccine, which has received approval from the European Medicines Agency (EMA) for this age group, they said.
“The vaccination of children under 16 is not yet considered. Complementary scientific and ethical analyzes are necessary to this end ”, said the Belgian interministerial public health conference on Saturday.
Record of vaccinations in Italy
A record 600,000 doses of Covid-19 vaccines were administered in Italy on Friday, health authorities announced on Saturday, stressing that the Peninsula was now in second place in Europe for the number of people vaccinated.
“Yesterday was marked by a record number of injections in twenty-four hours, which reached the 600,000 mark, while the number of doses administered now exceeds the bar of 37 million”, welcomed the government body in charge of the vaccine campaign in a press release.
“Italy is also in absolute second place in Europe in terms of fully vaccinated population, just behind Germany, and ahead of France and Spain”, he added, partly attributing this success to the increase in the number of vaccination centers, which are now 2,666 against 1,500 in early March. Eight hundred new centers will also be gradually opened in the coming weeks.