Coronavirus LIVE Updates: India Records 36,595 New Cases, 540 Deaths; Health Min Meets Covid-19 Taskforce Members

News18
·6-min read

Ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's all-party meeting in the Parliament on Friday, Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan has called for a meeting concerning various departments of the Covid-19 Taskforce shortly. Meanwhile, India's COVID-19 caseload rose to 95.71 lakh, while the total number of people who have recuperated from the disease crossed 90 lakh pushing the national recovery rate to 94.20 per cent, said the Union Health Ministry on Friday.

The total coronavirus cases mounted to 95,71,559 with 36,595 new infections being reported in a day, while the death toll climbed to 1,39,188 with 540 new fatalities, the data updated at 8 am showed.

Here are Live Updates:

- Zydus Gets Nod to Begin Phase III Trials in India | with Zydus received DCGI's approval to commence Phase III clinical trials with Pegylated Interferon alpha-2b in India. The 'Pegylated Interferon alpha – 2b' significantly increased viral reduction and reduced the need for supplemental oxygen in moderate COVID-19 patients.

- Covid-19 Caseload Surges to 95.71 Lakh; Recoveries Cross 90 Lakh | India's COVID-19 caseload rose to 95.71 lakh, while the total number of people who have recuperated from the disease crossed 90 lakh pushing the national recovery rate to 94.20 per cent, according to the Union Health Ministry data updated on Friday. The total coronavirus cases mounted to 95,71,559 with 36,595 new infections being reported in a day, while the death toll climbed to 1,39,188 with 540 new fatalities, the data updated at 8 am showed.

- Health Minister Harsh Vardhan Calls Urgent Covid-19 Meeting | Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan has called for a meeting concerning various departments of the Covid-19 Task force shortly.

- Biden Picks Former Obama Officials Zients, Murthy to Lead Covid-19 Fight: Report | U.S. President-elect Joe Biden has selected two former Obama administration officials to senior roles to help fight COVID-19, including the appointment of Jeff Zients as White House coronavirus coordinator, Politico reported on Thursday. Biden adviser Vivek Murthy will return to his role as Surgeon General but with a broader portfolio as the pandemic rages through the country, Politico said, citing two people familiar with the decision.

- Britain to cover COVID-19 vaccine side-effects under damages scheme | Britain will pay individuals who suffer any severe side-effects from COVID-19 vaccines under an existing programme, the government said on Thursday, ahead of a rollout of Pfizer and BioNTech’s vaccine in the country following emergency approval.

COVID-19 will be added as a "precautionary step" to the list of diseases covered for potential liabilities under the Vaccine Damage Payments Scheme (VDPS), the Department of Health and Social Care said. It added that vaccines would be deployed only after stringent checks. (bit.ly/3mEuZ3I)

- Pfizer Says Supply Chain Challenges Contributed to Slashed Target for COVID-19 Vaccine Doses in 2020 | Challenges in Pfizer Inc's supply chain for the raw materials used in its COVID-19 vaccine played a role in its decision to slash its 2020 production target, a Pfizer spokeswoman told Reuters.

Pfizer has said in recent weeks that it anticipates producing 50 million doses of its COVID-19 vaccine this year. That is down from an earlier target of 100 million doses. Pfizer's vaccine relies on a two dose regimen, meaning 50 million doses is enough to inoculate 25 million people.

- Moderna to Supply Up to 125 Million COVID-19 Vaccine Doses Globally in First Quarter | Moderna Inc said on Thursday it expects to have between 100 million and 125 million doses of its experimental COVID-19 vaccine available globally in the first quarter of 2021. The company said 85 million to 100 million of those doses would be available in the United States, with 15 million to 25 million available outside the country. The first-quarter doses are within the 500 million to up to 1 billion doses the company expects to manufacture globally in 2021, Moderna said.

- World War II Vet Beats COVID-19, Marks 104th Birthday | An Alabama man who spent World War II repairing bomb-damaged trains in France recovered from a fight with COVID-19 in time to mark his 104th birthday on Thursday. Major Wooten was physically drained and a little fuzzy mentally after battling the new coronavirus but appears to be on the mend, said granddaughter Holley Wooten McDonald. I'm just thankful that they were able to treat him so quickly and we were able to get him tested, said McDonald, adding: "Its amazing that a 104 year old survived COVID."

- Dr. Fauci Says UK Rushed Approval of Covid Vaccine | Dr Anthony Fauci, the top US infectious disease expert, on Thursday said the UK was not as rigorous as the US health authorities in its COVID-19 vaccine approval process. The UK on Wednesday became the first country in the world to approve the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine for the coronavirus. "The UK did not do it as carefully," he told Fox News. "If you go quickly and you do it superficially, people are not going to want to get vaccinated." "We really scrutinise the data very carefully to guarantee to the American public that this is a safe and efficacious vaccine," he said. We have the gold standard of a regulatory approach with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The UK did not do it as carefully and they got a couple of days ahead," the 79-year-old expert said.

- Covid-19 Situation in Delhi Under Control, Cases Going Down: Kejriwal | Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Thursday said the COVID 19 situation in the national capital is "under control" and the number of cases are also going down. At a meeting with a delegation of Delhi Bar Council and Coordination Committee of Bar Associations of Delhi, the chief minister said his government invested the most in the field of health and education and the result of that investment in the health sector is visible now during the pandemic.

- Bengal's COVID-19 Death Toll Climbs to 8,576 | West Bengal's COVID-19 tally mounted to 8,576 with 49 more patients succumbing to the virus on Thursday, the health department said in a bulletin. The coronavirus tally, too, rose to 4,93,316 with 3,246 fresh cases, it said. So far, 4,60,634 people have recovered from the disease, including 3,257 since Wednesday, improving the discharge rate to 93.38 per cent. West Bengal now has 24,106 active cases, the bulletin said.

- Assam Reports 165 Fresh Covid-19 Cases, 2 More Deaths | Assam's COVID-19 death toll increased to 985 with two more persons succumbing to the disease on Thursday, while 165 new cases took the tally to 2,13,336, Health and Family Welfare Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said. He said that 177 patients were cured of the infection during the day, taking the total number of recoveries to 2,08,843. The recovery rate in the state is currently 97.89 per cent.