Coronavirus News Briefing for Oct. 10: Brazil’s Death Toll Crosses the 600,000 Mark

By Paul Riegler on 10 October 2021
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A fruit stand in São Paulo’s Mercadão or Municipal Market

Brazil crossed a rather grim milestone of 600,000 deaths from the coronavirus late Friday, a figure second only to the death toll in the United States.  The country reported 600,4i3 as of that time.

The South American country has the third highest number of cases in the world, with 21.6 million, although the country’s successful vaccination campaign appears to be slowing down both infection rate and the death rate there, this despite the fact that the country’s president, Jair Bolsonaro, refuses to get inoculated against Covid himself and continues to defend treatments proven to be ineffective.

Meanwhile, in New York City, once the epicenter of the pandemic in the United States and the world, a vaccine mandate issued by Mayor Bill de Blasio has helped result in an increase in the city’s 250,000 home health care workers, who would shortly be unable to work without having been inoculated.  The vaccination rate as the deadline hit on Thursday was 86%, higher than what had been expected, although that may exacerbate an already existing shortage of such workers in the region.

As of Sunday morning, the world has recorded 238.5 million Covid-19 cases and almost 4.9 million deaths, according to Worldometer, a service that tracks such information. In addition, over 215.6 million people worldwide have recovered from the virus.

The average daily number of new coronavirus cases in the United States over the past 14 days is 96,951, a -20% change.  The average daily death toll over the same period is 1,750, a change of -14% over the same period.

In addition, since the start of the pandemic the United States has as of Saturday recorded 45.2 million cases, a higher figure than any other country, and a death toll of 733,058. India has the world’s second highest number of officially recorded cases, over 33.9 million, and a death toll of 450,699, although experts believe that both numbers are in reality significantly higher.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that, as of Sunday, 216.9 million people in the United States – or 65.3% – have received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine. Of that population, 56.4%, or 187.2 million people, are now fully vaccinated, and the total number of doses that have been dispensed in the United States is now 401.8 million. Breaking this down further, 78.2% of the population over the age of 18 – or 202 million people – has received at least a first inoculation and 67.8% of the same group – or 175 million people – is fully vaccinated.

More than 3.65 billion people across the globe  have received a dose of a Covid-19 vaccine, a figure that roughly equates to 47.6% of the world’s population, a 0.1 percentage point increase in the past 24 hours. There remains, however, a stark gap between the percentage of individuals vaccinated in more advanced countries such as Canada, China, Denmark, France, Italy, the United Kingdom, and the United States, where at least 65% of the population has received at least one dose of coronavirus vaccine, and countries such as Ethiopia, Haiti, Syria, Senegal, Tanzania, and Uganda, for example, where vaccination rates are in the single digits, if not lower.

Figures from the World Health Organization show that well-off countries are vaccinating people at the rate of one person per second, while the majority of poor countries have yet to give a single dose to its citizenry.

It is critical that the world do a better job of sharing vaccines with poorer nations.

Sharing vaccines is not merely a form of charity.  Rather, the equitable distribution of vaccines is in every country’s health and economic interest and no country will be able to move past the pandemic until other countries have recovered as well.

Jonathan Spira contributed to this story.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

Accura News

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