Health News Roundup: Colombia's Duque gets first COVID-19 shot amid record deaths; Moscow offers free cars to spur people to get COVID vaccine and more
An almost final version of the G7 communique seen by Reuters showed Germany and Italy had yet to back the inclusion of the $100 billion figure in the final statement by leaders. Colombia's Duque gets first COVID-19 shot amid record deaths Colombian President Ivan Duque received his first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine on Sunday, as he urged people to continue protecting themselves against the coronavirus amid a new record in daily deaths in the Andean country.
Following is a summary of current health news briefs.
EU's Michel: G7 to accelerate global COVID-19 vaccine deliveries
The Group of Seven countries have agreed to step up their production and delivery of COVID-19 vaccines around the world, European Union Council President Charles Michel said on Sunday. A draft of a communique from the G7 summit on Sunday said the club of rich democracies would provide 1 billion COVID-19 vaccine doses over the next year and work with the private sector, the G20 and other countries to increase the contribution in coming months.
G7 split on reallocating $100 billion IMF funds to COVID-hit nations
Group of Seven leaders were trying to resolve differences over a proposal to reallocate $100 billion from the International Monetary Fund's warchest to help countries struggling to cope with the COVID-19 crisis. An almost final version of the G7 communique seen by Reuters showed Germany and Italy had yet to back the inclusion of the $100 billion figure in the final statement by leaders.
Colombia's Duque gets first COVID-19 shot amid record deaths
Colombian President Ivan Duque received his first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine on Sunday, as he urged people to continue protecting themselves against the coronavirus amid a new record in daily deaths in the Andean country. Colombia, which has recorded more than 95,000 COVID-19 deaths, is in the process of vaccinating everyone over age 60 and people between ages 16 and 59 with pre-existing health conditions, as well as teachers and military personnel. Duque received his shot as the military commander in chief.
Moscow offers free cars to spur people to get COVID vaccine
Moscow will give away cars in a prize draw for residents who get the COVID-19 shot in an effort to speed up the slow rate of vaccinations, its mayor said on Sunday, as officials brought in curbs to halt a surge in coronavirus cases. The Russian capital reported 7,704 new infections on Sunday, the most in a single day since Dec. 24. Authorities confirmed 14,723 cases nationwide, the largest one-day total since Feb. 13.
U.S. has administered 309.3 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines, CDC says
The United States had administered 309,322,545 doses of COVID-19 vaccines and distributed 374,398,105 doses in the country as of Sunday morning, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said. Those figures were up from the 308,112,728 doses of vaccine that the CDC said had been administered as of Saturday, out of 374,397,205 doses delivered.
G7's billion vaccine plan counts some past pledges, limiting impact
A G7 plan to donate a billion COVID-19 vaccine doses to poorer countries will have limited impact because it includes some previous pledges, but it still offers a small lifeline to a global vaccine buying system, according to some experts. Leaders from the Group of Seven major economies announced the move on Friday. A U.S. initiative announced on Thursday to donate 500 million doses of the Pfizer and BioNTech SE vaccine is part of the G7 pledge.
Germany demands that J&J make up COVID-19 vaccine gap in July
Germany's health ministry said Johnson & Johnson must deliver 6.5 million COVID-19 vaccine doses to Germany in July to make up for a shortfall expected in June after the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) told the company to dispose of millions of doses because of contamination concerns. "This is regrettable because each dose counts," a ministry spokesman said on Sunday in response to an enquiry by Reuters. "We therefore expect from J&J that this amount is delivered in July as quickly as possible."
AstraZeneca shots have good risk-benefit profile for over 60s, says EMA official
The head of the EU drug regulator's COVID-19 task force said on Sunday that AstraZeneca's coronavirus vaccine had a favourable risk-benefit profile for all age groups and particularly for those aged over 60. Italian newspaper La Stampa earlier quoted European Medicines Agency (EMA) task force chief Marco Cavaleri as saying countries should avoid giving the vaccine to people aged over 60 in addition to younger age groups, amid fears over very rare blood clotting and as alternative vaccines become available.
G7 agrees 1 billion COVID vaccine donation - communique
Group of Seven countries will provide 1 billion COVID-19 vaccine doses over the next year and work with the private sector, the G20 and other countries to increase the contribution over months to come, according to an almost finalised draft of the communique. "The commitments since we last met in February 2021 including here in Carbis Bay provide for 1 billion doses over the next year," said the communique, seen by Reuters.
India holds vaccination drive for people with disabilities
Authorities in an Indian city have organised a special drive-through vaccination camp for disabled people in a bid to address low vaccination rates, especially among more vulnerable members of society. Organisers of the weekend campaign in Ahmedabad, the biggest city in Gujarat state, aim to vaccinate 500 disabled people, who often struggle to book slots and get access to vaccination centres.
(With inputs from agencies.)