New York was racing to cut off a second wave of coronavirus infections, and a leading World Health Organization (WHO) expert warned of growing public suspicion that even the most effective treatments for the pandemic could become unusable.
Bars and clubs in the Big Apple, the epicenter of the spring outbreak in the US, were forced to close at 10 p.m. on Friday, and the state governor warned schools that as early as Monday they could only teach online.
Infections are rising across America and Europe, and governments are being forced to take more drastic measures despite fears that their economies will be destroyed.
The disease has claimed nearly 1.3 million lives worldwide and infected nearly 53 million since it first emerged in China in December.
Even if a vaccine is expected to be approved soon, the WHO’s head of vaccination warned that misinformation and suspicion affecting people’s acceptance of scientific advances could affect its effectiveness.
“We as a world will not succeed in fighting the pandemic with the use of vaccines as one of the tools unless people are willing to get vaccinated,” Kate O’Brien told AFP.
Lebanon entered a new two-week lockdown on Saturday after reported infections topped the 100,000 mark and hospitals in the crisis-hit country were near full.
Virus restrictions forced Hong Kong’s traditionally boisterous and colorful annual Gay Pride Parade online on Saturday.
Across India, millions of people ignored social advice and gathered to pray in temples or to go shopping for Diwali, the festival of light.
“No lock”: Trump
In his first public address since declaring the November 3 election loser, Donald Trump on Friday pointed to medical breakthroughs that were taking place under his watch, but said he remained firmly against new bans.
He predicted that a Covid-19 vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech, which according to the companies is 90 percent effective in studies, would receive emergency approval “extremely soon”.
In the US, the country hardest hit by COVID-19, there were 1,88,858 more cases and 1,596 more deaths on Friday, according to a record by Johns Hopkins University.
“Thanksgiving will no doubt lead to a massive new explosion of cases if people don’t take it seriously,” said Michael Mina, a Harvard epidemiologist.
But Trump, who has long been opposed to measures to stall the economy, said his position was unchanged.
New antivirus measures went into effect in Ukraine on Saturday, ordering all non-essential businesses to remain closed for the weekend.
Officials in Kiev pulled back from a nationwide lockdown, admitting the country’s already battered economy could not stand it.
Even the partial restrictions have sparked protests in Kiev as people around the world tire of the restrictions on daily life.
In an Ifop poll in France, 60 percent of respondents admitted to breaking the country’s latest lockdown rules at least once by making up a false excuse to go out or meet family and friends.
(Except for the headline, this story was not edited by GossipMantri staff and posted from a syndicated feed.)