Coronavirus Morning News Brief – Oct. 6: 80% of Long Covid Sufferers Have Debilitating Conditions, Booster Uptake in U.S. ‘Abysmal’

Armed Guards in Hazmat Suits Point Machine Guns at Families in China Airport

By Jonathan Spira on 6 October 2022
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Good morning. This is Jonathan Spira reporting. Here now the news of the pandemic from across the globe on the 910th day of the pandemic.

In what may come as a great surprise to many, younger adults are more likely to have and report symptoms of Long Covid than older adults, according to data published Wednesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics.

More troubling is that 80% of those with Long Covid have debilitating conditions, which range from organ damage to severe chronic fatigue to brain fog as well as joint and muscle pain and loss of taste and smell.

As noted before in this space, I have Long Covid from an asymptomatic infection during the Delta wave, and suffer from everything on that list except for the loss of taste and smell.

Adults between the age of 18 and 29 had the highest share, of people currently with Long Covid who have trouble performing daily tasks, at 86.3%. Meanwhile, those between 40 and 49 had the lowest share, at 76.1%.

It remains unclear as to why people develop Long Covid but research is ongoing.

In other news we cover today, the number of people in the United States getting the newly formulated bivalent booster is “abysmal” and armed guards in hazmat suits pointed machine guns at families in an airport in China.

UNITED STATES

American Express said it ended coronavirus vaccine requirements at its offices, according to an internal memo sent Wednesday and viewed by the Morning News Brief.  The move comes ahead of a predicted new wave of Covid cases as the temperatures drop and people spend more time indoors.

Meanwhile, and of greater import, booster uptake in the country remains abysmal. While 68% of the population has received a full primary series of vaccines as has 90% of the population over the age of 18, less than half have gotten a single booster, a figure that is only slightly higher for those over 18. Only 37% of people over the age of 50 who received a first booster have gotten a second booster.

GLOBAL

As guards tried to keep travelers from leaving Xishuangbanna Gasa International Airport in Yunnan after the aerodrome was placed under lockdown, guards in hazmat suits were seen, in video posted on social media, pointing machine guns at frightened families.  The lockdown came as part of China’s so-called “zero Covid” policy after 61 new coronavirus infections were reported in the Yunnan province earlier this week.

In Hong Kong, the number of people impacted by the arrest of doctors who issued false coronavirus vaccine exemption certificates is reportedly over 20,000.  Individuals who are in these straits can now go to government clinics where new exemption certificates will be considered, officials there said.

TODAY’S STATISTICS

Now here are the daily statistics for Thursday, October 6.

As of Thursday morning, the world has recorded 625.1 million Covid-19 cases, an increase of 0.6 million cases, and almost 6.6 million deaths, according to Worldometer, a service that tracks such information. In addition, 604.9 million people worldwide have recovered from the virus, an increase of 0.5 million.

Worldwide, the number of active coronavirus cases as of Thursday is 13,624,894, an increase of 204,000. Out of that figure, 99.7%, or 13,585,025, are considered mild, and 0.3%, or 39,869, are listed as critical.  The percentage of cases considered critical has not changed over the past 24 hours.

The United States reported 80,585 new coronavirus infections on Thursday for the previous day, compared to 35,981 on Wednesday, 47,898 on Tuesday, and 4,755 on Monday, according to data from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.  The 7-day incidence rate is now 43,116.  Figures for the weekend (reported the following day) are typically 30% to 60% of those posted on weekdays due to a lower number of tests being conducted.

The average daily number of new coronavirus cases in the United States over the past 14 days is 43,149, a 23% decrease, based on data from the Department of Health and Human Services, among other sources.  The average daily death toll over the same period is 393, a decrease of 8% over the same period, while the average number of hospitalizations for the period was 27,184, an 11% decrease.

In addition, since the start of the pandemic the United States has, as of Thursday, recorded 98.4 million cases, a higher figure than any other country, and a death toll of just under 1.09 million. India has the world’s second highest number of officially recorded cases, 44.6 million, and a reported death toll of 528,745.

The newest data from Russia’s Rosstat state statistics service showed that, at the end of July, the number of Covid or Covid-related deaths since the start of the pandemic there in April 2020 is now 823,623, giving the country the world’s second highest pandemic-related death toll, behind the United States.  Rosstat reported that 3,284 people died from the coronavirus or related causes in July, down from 5,023 in June, 7,008 in May and 11,583 in April.

Meanwhile, France is the country with the third highest number of cases, with 35.6 million, although Brazil has recorded the third highest number of deaths as a result of the virus, 686,640, and has recorded over 34.7 million cases, placing it in the number four slot.

Germany is in the number five slot with over 33.6 million cases.

The other five countries with total case figures over the 20 million mark are South Korea, with 24.9 million cases, the United Kingdom, with just under 23.8 million cases, placing it in the number seven slot, and Italy, with over 22.6 million, as number eight, as well as Japan, with just under 21.5 million, and Russia, with over 21.1 million.

VACCINATION SPOTLIGHT

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that, as of the past Thursday, over 264.1 million people in the United States – or 79.5% – have received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine. Of that population, 67.9%, or 225.3 million people, have received two doses of vaccine, and the total number of doses that have been dispensed in the United States is now 619.8 million. Breaking this down further, 90.5% of the population over the age of 18 – or 233.6 million people – has received at least a first inoculation and 77.6% of the same group – or 200.8 million people – is fully vaccinated.  In addition, 51.9% of that population, or 104 million people, has already received a first booster dose of vaccine.

Starting on June 13, 2022, the CDC began to update vaccine data on a weekly basis and publish the updated information on Thursdays by 8 p.m. EDT, a statement on the agency’s website said.

Some 68% of the world population has received at least one dose of coronavirus vaccine by Thursday, according to Our World in Data, an online scientific publication that tracks such information.  So far, 12.76 billion doses of the vaccine have been administered on a global basis and 3.27 million doses are now administered each day.

Meanwhile, only 22.7% of people in low-income countries have received one dose, while in countries such as Canada, China, Denmark, France, Italy, the United Kingdom, and the United States, at least 75% of the population has received at least one dose of vaccine.

Only a handful of the world’s poorest countries – Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia and Nepal – have reached the 70% mark in vaccinations. Many countries, however, are under 20% and, in countries such as Haiti, Senegal, and Tanzania, for example, vaccination rates remain in the single digits, if not lower.

In addition, with the start of vaccinations in North Korea in late September, Eritrea remains the only country in the world that has not administered vaccines.

Anna Breuer contributed reporting to this story.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

Accura News

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