Health News Roundup: Britain reports 74,799 COVID-19 cases, 75 deaths on Sunday; Beijing Games had 72 COVID cases, none athletes, among early arrivals and more

The proposal, made by the WHO's working group on sustainable financing, would increase each member state's standing annual contribution, according to a WHO document published online and dated Jan. 4. Beijing introduces more COVID measures as cases mount before Olympics Beijing's city government on Sunday introduced new measures to contain a recent outbreak of COVID-19, as China's capital continued to report new local cases of the virus less than two weeks before it hosts the Winter Olympic Games.


Devdiscourse News Desk | Updated: 24-01-2022 02:32 IST | Created: 24-01-2022 02:30 IST
Health News Roundup: Britain reports 74,799 COVID-19 cases, 75 deaths on Sunday; Beijing Games had 72 COVID cases, none athletes, among early arrivals and more
Representative image Image Credit: ANI

Following is a summary of current health news briefs.

Britain reports 74,799 COVID-19 cases, 75 deaths on Sunday

Britain reported 74,799 new COVID-19 cases and 75 deaths within 28 days of a positive test on Sunday, government data showed. The number of positive tests have fallen by 15.4% to 641,687 in the last seven days, according to the data.

Beijing Games had 72 COVID cases, none athletes, among early arrivals

Beijing Olympics organisers said on Sunday they had confirmed 72 cases of COVID-19 among 2,586 Games-related personnel entering China from Jan. 4 to Jan. 22, with no cases among 171 athletes and team officials arriving in that period. Final preparations are taking place for the Winter Games amid a global surge in cases of the highly infectious Omicron coronavirus variant. The Games are set to take place from Feb. 4 to Feb. 20 inside a "closed loop" bubble that separates all event personnel from the public.

Exclusive-U.S. opposes plans to strengthen World Health Organization

The United States, the World Health Organization's top donor, is resisting proposals to make the agency more independent, four officials involved in the talks said, raising doubts about the Biden administration's long-term support for the U.N. agency. The proposal, made by the WHO's working group on sustainable financing, would increase each member state's standing annual contribution, according to a WHO document published online and dated Jan. 4.

Beijing introduces more COVID measures as cases mount before Olympics

Beijing's city government on Sunday introduced new measures to contain a recent outbreak of COVID-19, as China's capital continued to report new local cases of the virus less than two weeks before it hosts the Winter Olympic Games. Nine locally transmitted cases were found in Beijing on Jan. 22, the National Health Commission said on Sunday, of which six were in the city's Fengtai district.

Pfizer CEO sees annual COVID vaccine rather than frequent boosters

Pfizer Inc Chief Executive Albert Bourla said on Saturday that an annual COVID-19 vaccine would be preferable to more frequent booster shots in fighting the coronavirus pandemic. Pfizer/BioNtech's COVID-19 vaccine has shown to be effective against severe disease and death caused by the heavily-mutated Omicron variant but less effective in preventing transmission.

S.Korea reports second-highest COVID count ahead of holiday

South Korea posted its second-highest daily number of coronavirus cases on Sunday, despite extended COVID-19 curbs and a high vaccination rate, raising concerns of further spread during the upcoming Lunar New Year holiday. The country recorded 7,630 new cases on Saturday, the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA) said, above the 7,009 cases reported a day earlier and near the mid-December record https://www.reuters.com/world/asia-pacific/skorea-reports-7850-new-covid-19-cases-highest-daily-total-kdca-2021-12-15 of 7,848 logged.

Two Australian states to test school students twice weekly for COVID

Australia reported 58 deaths from COVID-19 on Sunday, as the two most populous states, New South Wales (NSW) and Victoria, said students would be tested twice weekly for the Omicron variant when classes resume next week. NSW reported 34 deaths of patients with COVID-19, while Victoria state saw 14 deaths, and Queensland reported 10 deaths.

India's COVID-19 cases rise by 333,533 in last 24 hours - govt

India reported over 300,000 new COVID-19 infections for the fourth straight day even though the caseload over the last 24 hours was slightly lower than a day before, data released by the government on Sunday showed. India reported 333,533 new COVID-19 infections over the past 24 hours with 525 dead, according to the figures released by the government.

Fourth COVID vaccine shot raises resistance to serious illness for over-60s: Israel

A fourth dose of COVID-19 vaccine given to people over 60 in Israel made them three times more resistant to serious illness than thrice-vaccinated people in the same age group, Israel's Health Ministry said on Sunday. The ministry also said the fourth dose, or second booster, made people over 60 twice as resistant to infection than those in the age group who received three shots of the vaccine.

One surrendered Hong Kong hamster tests COVID positive as city lockdown grows

Hong Kong authorities said on Sunday one hamster surrendered to authorities by pet owners had tested positive for COVID-19 and that over 2,200 hamsters had been culled as the city struggled to contain an outbreak. On Tuesday, officials ordered the killing of hamsters from dozens of pet shops after tracing a coronavirus outbreak to a worker at a shop and asked people to surrender any bought on or after Dec. 22.

(With inputs from agencies.)

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