clearn.png
Tuesday September 28th, 2021 10:43PM

The Latest: Afghanistan begins vaccination drive

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

KABUL, Afghanistan — Afghanistan has begun administering a COVID-19 vaccine with a ceremony at the presidential palace.

Afghanistan received 500,000 doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine from the government of India earlier this month. After the vaccine’s approval by the World Health Organization, it has begun immunizing front-line personnel including health workers, reporters and security forces.

Afghanistan has recorded 55,646 coronavirus cases, including 2,435 deaths.

___

THE VIRUS OUTBREAK:

— Researchers in Scotland say its COVID-19 vaccination program has caused hospitalizations to plummet

— British Prime Minister Boris Johnson to lay out plan to ease coronavirus restrictions but pubs, gyms and hairdressers to stay closed for weeks

— Russia’s vaccine rollout picks up speed but experts say the campaign is still moving slowly

— Elementary schools and kindergartens reopen in over half of Germany's 16 states

— Every Democratic vote is needed on $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill, but minimum wage and other issues will force choices

— Follow all of AP’s pandemic coverage at https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic, https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-vaccine and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

___

HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:

COLOMBO, Sri Lanka — Sri Lanka's government says it plans to vaccinate 14 million of the country's 22 million people.

The government “will immunize 14 million people, for which we need 28 million doses, and the government is ready to purchase that,” government spokesman Ramesh Pathirana said Tuesday.

It plans to purchase 10 million doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine for $52.5 million from the Serum Institute in India, he said. It will also buy 3.5 million doses directly from the AstraZeneca Institute in Britain. The vaccine is the only one that has been approved by Sri Lanka's regulatory body.

Sri Lanka is currently administering 500,000 doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine that were donated by India. By Tuesday, it had been given to 354,352 people.

Sri Lanka is witnessing a spike in COVID-19 cases, mostly in the capital, Colombo. It has recorded a total of 80,516 cases, including 450 deaths.

___

MEXICO CITY — Mexico has received its first shipment of Russia’s Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine.

Some 200,000 doses arrived to Mexico City’s international airport late Monday night aboard a British Airways flight from Moscow. Officials plan to use the doses to begin vaccinating seniors in the capital’s most marginalized boroughs on Wednesday. Mexico Foreign Affairs Secretary Marcelo Ebrard confirmed their arrival via Twitter.

Mexico received its first shipment of vaccines from Pfizer in mid-December, but turned to Sputnik V in January when other expected vaccine shipments were delayed. Sputnik too arrives later than initially expected. Mexico President Andrés Manuel López Obrador spoke with Russia President Vladimir Putin in late January.

In early February, Mexican regulators gave Sputnik V emergency approval and the government signed a contract to bring 400,000 doses to Mexico in February. It was unclear when the next shipment of Sputnik would arrive.

___

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippine president will reject recommendations to further ease coronavirus quarantine restrictions across the country until a delayed vaccination campaign kicks off, his spokesman said.

President Rodrigo Duterte also rejected a plan to resume face-to-face school classes in some pilot areas until vaccinations, which have been set back by delays in the arrival of initial batches of COVID-19 vaccine, have been launched, presidential spokesman Harry Roque said.

The scheduled delivery on Tuesday of 600,000 doses from Sinovac Biotech Ltd. was postponed anew after the China-based company failed to immediately secure an emergency-use permit from Manila’s Food and Drug Administration. Sinovac got the authorization Monday.

Top economic officials have asked Duterte to consider further easing quarantine restrictions in the country starting in March to bolster the economy, which has suffered one of the worst recessions in the region, and stave off hunger. But Duterte rejected the recommendations.

“The chief executive recognizes the importance of re-opening the economy and its impact on people’s livelihoods,” Roque said but added that the president “gives higher premium to public health and safety.”

The Philippines has reported more than 563,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 infections and more than 12,000 deaths, the second highest in Southeast Asia. The government has faced criticisms for failing to immediately launch a massive vaccine campaign for about 70 million Filipinos.

___

WASHINGTON __ President Joe Biden called the U.S. topping of the threshold of 500,000 deaths blamed on the coronavirus a "truly grim, heartbreaking milestone.”

Biden is urging Americans to resist becoming “numb to the sorrow” and “viewing each life as a statistic.” He says the people lost were “extraordinary.”

Biden also touched on the personal tragedy he’s experienced in losing his first wife and baby daughter in a car collision, and later losing an adult son to brain cancer.

Biden tells the nation’s he knows it’s hard but that “to heal, we must remember.”

He spoke before holding a moment of silence in the White House and inviting the public to join.

___

WASHINGTON-- Drugmaker Johnson & Johnson says it will be able to provide 20 million U.S. doses of its single-shot COVID-19 vaccine by the end of March, assuming it gets the greenlight from federal regulators.

J&J disclosed the figure in written testimony ahead of a Congressional hearing on Tuesday looking at the country’s vaccine supply. White House officials cautioned last week that initial supplies of J&J’s vaccine would be limited.

The company reiterated that it will have capacity to provide 100 million vaccine doses to the U.S. by the end of June. That supply will help government officials reach the goal of having enough injections to vaccinate most adult Americans later this year. On a global scale the company aims to produce 1 billion doses this year.

U.S. health regulators are still reviewing the safety and effectiveness of the shot and a decision to allow its emergency use is expected later this week. J&J’s vaccine would be the first in the U.S. that requires only a single shot.

Currently available vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna require two doses spaced several weeks apart. Executives from both companies and two other vaccine makers will also testify at Tuesday’s hearing.

___

WASHINGTON — The Food and Drug Administration said Monday that it won’t require huge, months-long studies if COVID-19 vaccines eventually need tweaking to better match a mutating virus -- small, short studies will suffice.

The vaccines now being rolled out do still protect against different variants of the virus, the FDA stressed. But viruses mutate constantly, and some new versions are starting to raise concerns. So FDA issued new guidelines for vaccines -- as well as for virus tests and treatments -- on steps that companies can start taking to get ready.

“We’re trying to be prepared in advance,” said Dr. Peter Marks, the FDA’s vaccines chief.

Already major manufacturers have started updating their vaccine recipes if regulators eventually decide that’s necessary.

Marks said the needed tests would include a few hundred people rather than thousands, and could take just two or three months. Volunteers would receive experimental doses of the tweaked vaccine and then have their blood checked to see if it revved up the immune system about as well as the original vaccines do.

Marks said the hope is that if vaccines have to be updated, they would work broadly enough to cover both the original virus and a new mutant version -- rather than requiring a combination shot like flu vaccines. Having to make multiple kinds of vaccine and then combine them would put a greater strain on already stretched production capabilities.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Online National News, AP Health, AP World News, AP Business, AP Business - Corporate News, AP Business - Economy, AP Business - Industries, AP Business - Health Care
© Copyright 2021 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
BLM in Italian Fashion campaign shows early tangible results
A digital runway show by five Italian fashion designers of African origin opens Milan Fashion Week, one tangible result of a campaign launched last summer by the only Black Italian designer belonging to the Italian fashion chamber
4:30AM ( 11 minutes ago )
The Latest: Afghanistan begins vaccination drive
Afghanistan has begun administering a COVID-19 vaccine with a ceremony at the presidential palace
4:25AM ( 17 minutes ago )
Global shares mixed amid vaccine optimism, US tech sell-off
Global markets are mixed after a sell-off of shares in technology companies on Wall Street
4:07AM ( 35 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
GOP working to block Biden's health care pick; Dems unfazed
President Joe Biden’s pick for health secretary is facing two days of contentious Senate hearings
12:12AM ( 4 hours ago )
The Latest: Mexico receives shipment of Sputnik V vaccine
Mexico has received the first shipment of Russia’s Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine
11:57PM ( 4 hours ago )
The Latest: Philippine leader won't ease virus restrictions
The Philippine president will reject recommendations to further ease coronavirus quarantine restrictions across the country until a delayed vaccination campaign kicks off
10:08PM ( 6 hours ago )
AP Health
Lam backs Hong Kong electoral changes excluding opponents
Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam is giving her clear support to electoral changes that would likely further exclude opposition voices and cement Beijing's control over the city's politics
2:28AM ( 2 hours ago )
Facebook says it will lift its Australian news ban soon
Facebook says it will lift its ban on Australians sharing news after reaching a deal with Australia’s government on legislation that would make digital giants pay for journalism
2:28AM ( 2 hours ago )
Afghan peace talks resume, but path is anything but certain
Afghanistan’s warring sides have returned to the negotiation table after more than a month of delays amid hopes that the two sides could agree on a reduction of violence - and eventually, an outright ceasefire
1:58AM ( 2 hours ago )
AP World News
Asian shares mixed amid vaccine optimism, US tech sell-off
Asian markets are mixed after a sell-off of shares in technology companies on Wall Street
2:00AM ( 2 hours ago )
What NY prosecutors could learn from Trump's tax records
Manhattan's district attorney fought for a year and a half to get access to former President Donald Trump’s tax records
1:04AM ( 3 hours ago )
Asian shares mostly higher amid coronavirus vaccine optimism
Asian shares are mostly higher despite a sell-off in technology companies on Wall Street
11:11PM ( 5 hours ago )
AP Business
EPA changes stand, sides with ethanol industry in court case
The federal government announced Monday that it will support the ethanol industry in a lawsuit over biofuel waivers granted to oil refineries under President Donald Trump’s administration
6:45PM ( 9 hours ago )
Kohl's pushes back on investor group's takeover efforts
Kohl’s is fighting back against an investor group’s efforts to take control of the department store chain’s board, arguing that it would derail its progress and momentum
6:32PM ( 10 hours ago )
Judge says railroad talks should be included in lawsuits
A federal judge has ruled that the nation's four largest railroads can't exclude details of their conversations from lawsuits challenging billions of dollars of charges the railroads imposed in the past
6:17PM ( 10 hours ago )
AP Business - Corporate News
A Biden edge in COVID-19 bill: Dems reluctant to wound him
Democrats have a potent dynamic on their side as Congress preps for its first votes on the party’s $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill
5:35PM ( 11 hours ago )
Weakness in Big Tech stocks leaves Wall Street mostly lower
Stocks closed mostly lower on Wall Street Monday, dragged down by losses in several Big Tech companies
5:05PM ( 11 hours ago )
Stocks fall as investors mull inflation concerns, recovery
Stocks mostly fell in afternoon trading on Monday, adding to the declines that started last week as investors continue to be concerned about rising interest rates and the potential for inflation down the road
3:19PM ( 13 hours ago )
AP Business - Economy
The Latest: Johnson & Johnson says can provide 20M US doses
Drugmaker Johnson & Johnson says it will be able to provide 20 million U.S. doses of its single-shot COVID-19 vaccine by the end of March, assuming it gets the greenlight from federal regulators
5:13PM ( 11 hours ago )
The Latest: Oklahoma opens second phase of COVID-19 vaccines
Oklahoma has opened its second phase of coronavirus vaccinations on Monday, providing inoculations to public school teachers and staff and to adults of any age with illnesses that make them susceptible to the virus
3:14PM ( 13 hours ago )
UN to rich nations: Don't undermine COVAX vaccine program
The head of the World Health Organization is pleading with rich countries to check before ordering additional COVID-19 vaccine shots for themselves whether that undermines efforts to get vaccines to poorer nations
12:55PM ( 15 hours ago )
AP Business - Industries
Hospitals confront water shortages in winter storm aftermath
Hospitals across the South are grappling with water shortages as the region carries on with recovery efforts in the wake of a devastating winter storm
6:10PM ( 1 day ago )
Beyond 100M: Biden team aiming for bigger vaccine numbers
One month into Joe Biden's presidency, the government is on a glide path to reach his initial goal of administering 100 million vaccine doses in his first 100 days in office
2:27PM ( 1 day ago )
The Latest: Israel to issue badges as proof of vaccination
Israel's prime minister has unveiled a plan to allow people who have been vaccinated against the coronavirus to attend cultural events, fly abroad and go to health clubs and restaurants
3:42PM ( 2 days ago )
AP Business - Health Care
BLM in Italian Fashion campaign shows early tangible results
A digital runway show by five Italian fashion designers of African origin opens Milan Fashion Week, one tangible result of a campaign launched last summer by the only Black Italian designer belonging to the Italian fashion chamber
4:30AM ( 11 minutes ago )
Global shares mixed amid vaccine optimism, US tech sell-off
Global markets are mixed after a sell-off of shares in technology companies on Wall Street
4:07AM ( 35 minutes ago )
UK unemployment rate rises for 6th straight month
The U.K. unemployment rate rose for a six straight month in December as renewed coronavirus restrictions shut down most businesses across the country
3:52AM ( 49 minutes ago )
State TV: Iran imposes curbs on UN nuclear inspections
State TV says Iran officially has begun restricting international inspections of its nuclear facilities, a bid to pressure European countries and U.S. President Joe Biden's administration to lift economic sanctions and restore the 2015 nuclear deal
3:45AM ( 57 minutes ago )
Long-serving Saudi oil minister Ahmed Zaki Yamani dies at 90
Ahmed Zaki Yamani, a long-serving oil minister in Saudi Arabia who led the kingdom through the 1973 oil crisis and once found himself held hostage by the assassin Carlos the Jackal, has died in London
3:43AM ( 59 minutes ago )