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Initial Testing Of First Covid-19 Vaccine Shows Promising Results

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Possible Covid-19 Vaccine Rolled Out This Year - Oxford Developer

Researchers have on Tuesday reported that the Covid-19 vaccine tested in the United States revved up people’s immune systems just the way scientists had hoped

The US government’s top infectious disease expert, Dr Anthony Fauci told the Associated Press news agency “No matter how you slice this, this is good news”.

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The experimental vaccine, developed by Fauci’s colleagues at the National Institutes of Health in partnership with Moderna Inc, will start its most important step around July 27: a 30,000-person study to prove if the shots really are strong enough to protect against the coronavirus.

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On Tuesday, Moderna stated in a press release that if all goes well in future studies, “the Company remains on track to be able to deliver approximately 500 million doses per year, and possibly up to 1 billion doses per year, beginning in 2021.”

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According to data by Johns Hopkins University, more than 13.3 million persons around the world have been diagnosed with Covid-19, 7.4 million have recovered, and more than 58,000 have died.

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Travel Bans Cannot Be Indefinite, Countries Must Fight Virus – WHO

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Travel Bans Cannot Be Indefinite, Countries Must Fight Virus - WHO

The World Health Organization has on Monday urged countries to do more to reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus within their borders saying that bans on international travel cannot stay in place indefinitely.

Many countries have reimpose some travel restrictions in recent days due to a surge in infections.

WHO Emergencies Programme head Mike Ryan said travel bans were not sustainable.

“It is going to be almost impossible for individual countries to keep their borders shut for the foreseeable future. Economies have to open up, people have to work, trade has to resume,” he said.

The UN’s health agency director-general, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a virtual news briefing that only with strict adherence to health measures, from wearing masks to avoiding crowds, would the world manage to beat the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ghebreyesus said “where these measures are followed, cases go down. Where they are not, cases go up,” he added, praising Canada, China, Germany and South Korea for controlling outbreaks.

According to data from Johns Hopkins University nearly 16.5 million persons globally have been diagnosed with the coronavirus, some 9.6 million patients have recovered, and more than 654,000 have died.

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Brazilian Study Finds Hydroxychloroquine Ineffective

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The hydroxychloroquine touted by United States president Donald Trump and Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro to treat coronavirus has again been found to be ineffective in the treatment of the virus after a large study in Brazil.

Bolsonaro’s government in May had recommended that hospitals prescribe the drug to coronavirus patients. The president himself has said he is taking it after testing positive for Covid-19 in early July.

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In a clinical study conducted on 667 patients with mild to moderate symptoms in 55 hospitals in Brazil and published in the New England Journal of Medicine revealed that the drug does not effectively treat Covid-19 and could have damaging side effects.

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The paper’s authors cautioned the trial had its limitations, they explained further that “the trial cannot definitively rule out either a substantial benefit of the trial drugs or a substantial harm”.

Earlier this year, hydroxychloroquine made headlines when it was hoped the malaria drug could also help people sick with Covid-19.

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But after a large trial at Oxford University in June found hydroxychloroquine to be ineffective, the World Health Organization halted its own studies.

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Global Coronavirus Cases Exceed 15 Million

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According to data by Johns Hopkins University on Wednesday, more than 15 million persons globally have been diagnosed with the coronavirus, with the pandemic gathering pace even as countries remain divided in their response to the crisis.

The data showed that more than 8.5 million have recovered, and nearly 618,000 have died with the United States having the highest number of fatalities with more than 142,000 deaths recorded.

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The US also leads with the highest number of infections in the world with 3.91 million infections.

In early January, after the first COVID-19 case was reported in Wuhan, China, it took about 15 weeks to reach 2 million cases. By contrast, it took just eight days to climb above 15 million from the 13 million reached on July 13.

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According to the Reuters tally, the top five countries with the most cases is rounded out by Brazil, India, Russia and South Africa. Globally, the rate of new infections shows no sign of slowing down.

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Health experts stress that official data almost certainly underreports both infections and deaths, particularly in countries with limited testing capacity.

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