Coronavirus worldwide: Argentina’s president under investigation for Corona party, Russia approves fifth vaccine

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More than 214 million people have tested positive for the virus worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University. More than 4.4 million infected people have died. More than 5 billion vaccine doses have been administered worldwide.

Prosecutors have launched an investigation into Argentine leader Alberto Fernández over a party hosted despite strict Corona rules. Most recently, a photo had surfaced of presidential wife Fabiola Yañez’s birthday party last June, showing about a dozen guests, Fernández and the first lady at the presidential residence. At the time, a strict curfew was in effect, and celebrations in closed rooms were prohibited by decree. Given the politically heated atmosphere ahead of the Sept. 12 parliamentary primaries, the party at the residence has dominated headlines in Argentina for days. Fernández asked for forgiveness and took responsibility for the party.

Amid new negative records in Corona deaths, Russia has approved another vaccine against the virus. The vaccine EpiVacCorona-N has been added to the State Register of Medicines, the Interfax agency reported Thursday evening (Aug. 26). This means that Russia, with a population of about 146 million, now has five different Corona vaccines. The new agent was developed at the “Vektor” research center in the Siberian metropolis of Novosibirsk. On Thursday, authorities nationwide reported 820 deaths linked to the virus in one day – a high since the pandemic began.
Norway on Thursday (Aug. 26) recorded the highest number of new infections since the Corona pandemic began. The Covid 19 pathogen was detected in 1294 people. In the past two weeks, there have been 152 reported cases per 100,000 inhabitants, the health authority said. The number of hospitalizations, while increasing, is still at a low level, authorities had said the previous day. About 62 percent of adults are fully vaccinated.

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) said Thursday (Aug. 26) it is investigating a contamination incident in the manufacture of the Moderna vaccine. In doing so, it plans to determine whether the mishap also has implications for EU supplies. Previously, Japan suspended the use of 1.63 million doses of Moderna vaccine. The company said the contamination could be due to a problem at its manufacturing facility in Spain.

The companies Biontech and Pfizer plan to produce their coronavirus vaccine for Latin America in Brazil. This is according to a memorandum of understanding released Thursday (Aug. 26) by both Pfizer and Biontech, as well as Eurofarma. According to the agreement, technology transfer, on-site development and installation of the devices in São Paulo are to begin immediately. More than 100 million vaccine doses will be produced annually, exclusively for the Latin American market. AstraZeneca’s vaccines as well as Sinovac are also produced in Brazil. However, the greatest demand is for that of Pfizer/Biontech. The U.S.-German joint venture also announced it has submitted additional data to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for approval of a booster vaccine. A Phase 3 study reportedly showed that the third dose produced “significant neutralizing antibody titers” against coronavirus, according to the manufacturers.

Two major hospitals in the Australian megacity of Sydney have erected tents to cope with the intake of a rapidly growing number of incoming covid patients. Despite a strict lockdown in place for the past eight weeks, the Australian state of New South Wales with the metropolis of Sydney is not getting an outbreak of the delta variant under control. On Thursday (Aug. 26), authorities recorded 1029 new infections within 24 hours – the highest number since the pandemic began. Three people died in connection with Covid-19, including a man about 30 years old. The Premier of the constituent state, Gladys Berejiklian, announced relaxations for fully vaccinated people from September 13. Accordingly, up to five fully vaccinated people will be able to meet outdoors for one hour within a 5-kilometer radius of their residence. At the same time, the lockdown was also extended in remote rural areas of the constituent state until Sept. 10. Infection rates also continue to rise in Australia’s second largest city, Melbourne, and in the capital, Canberra, despite the lockdown. Only 32 percent of Australians are fully vaccinated.

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