Thursday, October 1, 2020

Liverpool masks; vaccine test - Kerala, Delhi report more cases - Covid update

The Covid-19 tally in India zoomed past 5.7 million after over 86,000 fresh cases were registered within a single day. The death toll also climbed from 90,020 to 91,149 during the same period, latest data released by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare suggested. However, India’s recovery rate continued to improve as the country’s daily recovered cases exceeded the daily infections for the sixth consecutive day. The total Covid-19 recoveries have surged to 46.7 lakh exceeding active cases by more than 37 lakh. Nearly 74 per cent of the new Covid-19 recoveries are from 10 states and UT, including Maharashtra, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, UP, Tamil Nadu, Odisha, Delhi, Kerala, West Bengal, and Chhattisgarh, the Union Health Ministry said today. 

Kerala on Thursday recorded 6,324 fresh Covid-19 cases, taking its overall tally past 1.5 lakh. The total recovered cases recorded today were 3,168.  With 3,834 fresh coronavirus cases, Delhi's infection tally breached the 2.60-lakh mark on Thursday, while the death toll mounted to 5,123, authorities said.  The infection tally in the national capital now stood at 2,60,623.

US President Donald Trump has hit out at China for not stopping the COVID-19 pandemic that has claimed hundreds of thousands of lives globally, as he yet again used the term "China virus" and urged his supporters not to call it coronavirus, saying the name sounds like a "beautiful place" in Italy. Addressing a packed election rally in the battle ground State of Pennsylvania, Trump told his supporters on Tuesday that if re-elected, over the next four years, his administration will make America a manufacturing superpower of the world and will end US's reliance on China once and for all.

According to France Football, Liverpool have taken a significant interest in signing out-of-favor Barcelona star, Ousmane Dembele on loan. The French star who arrived from Dortmund for a stunning fee of 105 million euros has been a bit of a disappointment, to say the least.

Liverpool is on the eastern side of the Mersey Estuary and historically lay within the ancient hundred of West Derby in North West England's county of Lancashire.  Liverpool Football Club is a professional football club in Liverpool, England, that competes in the Premier League, the top tier of English football. Domestically, the club has won nineteen League titles, seven FA Cups, a record eight League Cups and fifteen FA Community Shields.  Founded in 1892, the club joined the Football League the following year and has played at Anfield since its formation. Liverpool established itself as a major force in English and European football in the 1970s and 1980s, when Bill Shankly, Bob Paisley, Joe Fagan and Kenny Dalglish led the club to a combined eleven League titles and four European Cups. Liverpool won two further European Cups in 2005 and 2019.  One of the most widely supported teams in the world, in 2019, Liverpool was the world's seventh highest-earning football club, with an annual revenue of €604 million, and the world's eighth most valuable football club, valued at $2.183 billion. Liverpool has long-standing rivalries with Manchester United and Everton. The team changed from red shirts and white shorts to an all-red home strip in 1964 which has been used ever since. The club's anthem is "You'll Never Walk Alone".

The interesting news from UK is – a  school has banned pupils from wearing Liverpool FC face masks in a bid to stop them from becoming fashionable 'status symbols'.  Lord Derby Academy (LDA) in Huyton, Merseyside, sent a text message to parents saying face coverings worn in the school must be 'black, grey, burgundy or medical blue' in school from Monday, September 21. School chiefs say the request is to 'ensure a completely inclusive approach' and that they are 'determined to avoid any pupil being 'singled out' A mother has since aired her frustration after he child's face mask, which is red and black and emblazoned with a Liverpool FC badge, was one of those banned under the new school rule. She added that 'it shouldn't matter what colour a mask is as long as the children wear it and feel safer.'


But the school insists the measures being put in place are to 'ensure a completely inclusive approach' and that LDA is determined to avoid any pupil being 'singled out' and face coverings becoming a 'status symbol.'  Now that face masks are compulsory, people are turning their backs on the blue medical ones in favour of more creative and designer ones. It has led people to flock online to comb through the latest ‘must have’ face mask designs. Manufacturers are all too pleased to meet the demands and have made them available in floral, leopard print, camouflage and of course team sports.  

Pupils and staff at secondary schools in local lockdown areas will have to wear face masks in communal areas. This does not include classrooms and does not apply to primary-aged pupils.  In all other parts of the country, it will be up to head teachers to decide whether masks are required.  The Scottish government announced yesterday that face coverings should be worn by staff and pupils when they move around secondary schools from August 31. The rules will also apply on school transport for primary school pupils aged five and above.

All these would end when the virus loses its power – rather people developing the much needed vitality to overcome the virus or when the fully developed vaccines are available.  British scientists will be the first in the world to carry out a controversial study in which healthy volunteers are infected with coronavirus, according to reports.  The 'challenge trial' - which could rapidly accelerate the development of experimental jabs - is said to be set to begin in January at a clinic in east London. Participants will be infected with a dose of Sars-Cov-2, the virus that causes Covid-19, a month after being jabbed with a vaccine, according to the Financial Times.  The Government-funded study could help drugmakers test their Covid-19 vaccines without having to wait for volunteers to naturally catch the virus in the community.  

Between 100 and 200 participants are expected to be recruited for the trial, which is being run by a US advocacy group that has campaigned for human Covid-19 challenge trials throughout the crisis. It's unclear which vaccine candidate will be tested, but Oxford University said that it was not taking part in the programme.  Challenge trials are commonly deployed by scientists trying to develop a vaccine and have been used in malaria, typhoid and flu. But, unlike those illnesses, there is no proven treatment for people with mild coronavirus, so there is nothing to stop the participants falling seriously ill.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

24.09.2020.

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