Coronavirus LIVE Updates: US Tweaks Rule, Will Aide in Production of 20 mn More AstraZeneca Doses Amid Shortage; Biden Admin Takes 'Close Look' at Passports for International Travel

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Coronavirus LIVE Updates: The Bureau of South & Central Asian Affairs has redirected Covid-19 vaccine manufacturing supplies for India, which will allow the country to make over 20 million additional doses of AstraZeneca vaccine. The Biden administration is taking "a very close look" at the possibility of vaccine passports for travel into and out of the United States, the homeland security secretary, Alejandro Mayorkas, said on Friday.

"In total, the US government, state governments, US companies, and private citizens have provided over USD 500 million in COVID-19 relief supplies to India," said Dean Thompson, Acting Assistant Secretary, Bureau of South & Central Asian Affairs, US.

Meanwhile, Noida targets to become India’s first fully vaccinated district against Covid. A clarion call towards the resolution was given by District Magistrate Suhas L Y during a virtual meeting with top health and administration officials of the district. Gautam Buddh Nagar is second after state capital Lucknow in Uttar Pradesh in terms of vaccination but is first in terms of population ratio inoculated, according to the statement.

West Bengal’s Covid-19 death toll on Friday crossed the 15,000-mark after 145 more people succumbed to the disease, the health department said. The tally mounted to 13,43,442 after 12,193 fresh cases of infection were reported in the state. The total number of fatalities is 15,120 now. Meanwhile, 2,51,642 people were inoculated in West Bengal.

German children from the age of 12 will now be eligible for a Covid-19 inoculation from next month, the government said. This comes in anticipation of formal approval being given by the European regulator for the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine, which is currently available to those 16 and over. Angela Merkel said on Thursday night, after a lengthy "vaccine summit" with the leaders of the 16 Länder that every German citizen will have been offered a vaccine by 21 September and "that now includes the 12- to 16-year-olds".

Merkel stressed that the reopening of schools for normal operation in the autumn term was not dependent on whether children had been vaccinated.

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