International Update: Global Covid-19 infections pass 13.3 million as cases rise by 200,000 a day – encouraging results as vaccine nears final testing

15 July 2020 (Last Updated July 15th, 2020 10:48)

15 July

Global: Global cases have passed 13.3 million, as cases continue to rise by around 200,000 every 24 hours. There have been 578,628 deaths so far, according to the Johns Hopkins University tracker.

The blood from seriously ill coronavirus patients on ventilators was found by researchers to be highly inflammatory and harmful to the body, the South China Morning Post reported on Wednesday, citing a study by Dutch scientists.

Japan: Tokyo is considering raising its alert for coronavirus infections to the highest of four levels, officials said on Wednesday, after a spike in cases to record numbers in the city.

Australia: The state of Victoria has recorded 238 new cases of Covid-19 and the death of a woman in her 90s and New South Wales has recorded 13 new cases, including ten linked to the Crossroads Hotel cluster in south-west Sydney which has now affected 34 people.

New Zealand: Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said that New Zealand must prepare for new coronavirus outbreaks as the pandemic spreads globally, but will not drop its elimination strategy if community transmission was discovered.

Germany: The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Germany increased by 351 to 199,726, Reuters reported on Wednesday citing the latest data from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for infectious diseases.

China: China’s National Health Commission said Wednesday that it received reports of six new confirmed Covid-19 cases on the Chinese mainland as of the end of Tuesday, and all of them were imported.

Mexico: Mexico’s Health Ministry has reported 7,051 new confirmed coronavirus infections and 836 additional fatalities, bringing the total in the country to 311,486 cases and 36,327 deaths, according to Reuters news agency.

South Korea: South Korea’s new coronavirus cases stayed below 40 for the second day in a row on Wednesday, but imported cases continued to rise, hampering the country’s efforts to contain the disease, according to Yonhap state news agency.

Ghana: More than 300 students and tutors have tested positive for coronavirus at high schools in the West African nation of Ghana, AP news agency reported.

Cyprus: Cyprus is doubling the number of random coronavirus tests that will be carried out on arriving passengers at its two main airports each day, AP news agency reported.

Vaccine News

US: The first Covid-19 vaccine tested in the United States revved up people’s immune systems just the way scientists had hoped, researchers reported – as the shots are poised to begin key final testing.

Lockdown updates

Global: Cities and states around the world returned to tighter coronavirus restrictions to battle recurring outbreaks, including India’s IT hub Bangalore which was set to go into a new week-long lockdown on Tuesday as the number of coronavirus cases surged.

India: 133 million people re-enter lockdown in India as Covid-19 cases top 900,000. Late on Tuesday, India’s coronavirus cases, the third-highest in the world, passed 900,000, according to the Johns Hopkins University tracker. The current total stands at 906,752, with 23,727 known deaths.

US: President Donald Trump said in an interview on Tuesday that it was a “mistake” for the two largest California school districts, Los Angeles and San Diego, to keep schools closed in the fall.

Venezuela: Venezuela’s capital Caracas will go into a strict lockdown on Wednesday, in a bid to slow its coronavirus outbreak. Much of Venezuela has been shut down since its first case was reported in early March.

France: In France, masks will become mandatory in all enclosed public spaces within the next few weeks, President Emmanuel Macron has said in a major Bastille Day interview. The country is also aiming to reopen all schools for the new academic year under as “normal” conditions as possible.

China: Renewed restrictions took effect in Hong Kong on Wednesday, with restaurants limited to takeout after 6pm, as the Asian financial centre battles a resurgence of the coronavirus, Reuters news agency reported.