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In this Tuesday, June 22, 2021 file photo, a health worker inoculates a woman with China's Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine at a temporary vaccination center in Manila, Philippines - Sputnik International

Live Updates: US' FDA Authorizes Pfizer Booster Shots for Older, At-Risk Americans

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The global death toll from the coronavirus infection has topped 4.707 million and over 229.5 million cases have been detected, according to Baltimore, Maryland's Johns Hopkins University, which tracks and compiles data from national and local authorities, the media and other sources.
The United States has the highest death toll and overall coronavirus tally, with 42.4 million infected and 678,000 fatalities. It is followed by India (33.5 million cases and a death toll of over 445,000) and Brazil (21.2 million cases, 591,000 deaths).
More than 90% of the population of Africa have not received yet event the first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Tuesday while addressing the United Nations General Assembly gathering.
Guterres called for the launch of a global vaccination plan to at least double vaccine production and provide 70% of the global population with vaccines in the first half of the next year.
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00:54 GMT 23.09.2021
Venezuela Wants to Vaccinate Up to 90% People From COVID-19 by December - Maduro
MEXICO CITY (Sputnik) - From 80 to 90 percent of the Venezuelan people will be vaccinated against COVID-19 by December, President Nicolas Maduro said.

"I believe that 80-90 percent of people will be fully vaccinated by December," Maduro said on late Wednesday.

Venezuela's current vaccination plan envisages the inoculation of 70 percent of people, or 22 million, by October, after which the country will start to vaccinate people aged from 3 to 18 years.

The country is currently using Russia's Sputnik V and China's Sinopharm vaccines against COVID-19.
00:53 GMT 23.09.2021
US Approves Pfizer Covid Vaccine Booster Shot for Certain Populations - Statement
A vial labelled with the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine is seen in this illustration picture taken March 19, 2021. - Sputnik International, 1920, 22.09.2021
FDA Authorizes Pfizer Booster Shots for Elderly, At-Risk Americans
23:28 GMT 22.09.2021
Number of COVID-19 Cases in Brazil Rises by 36,473 to Over 21.28Mln - Ministry of Health
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Brazil has increased by 36,473 to 21,283,567 within the past 24 hours, the national Ministry of Health said on late Wednesday.

According to the ministry, the death toll has risen by 876 to 592,316 people within the same period of time.

More than 20.29 million patients have recovered since the start of the outbreak.

A day earlier, the country confirmed 11,455 new coronavirus cases, with 485 fatalities.

Brazil comes second in terms of the death toll following the United States with more than 680,000 fatalities, and third in terms of the number of confirmed cases after the US and India.
20:36 GMT 22.09.2021
Italy to Send Extra 30 Million COVID-19 Vaccines to Poor Countries - Prime Minister
ROME (Sputnik) - Italy will donate 30 million vaccine doses against COVID-19 to low-income nations, in addition to the 15 million doses announced in May, Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi said on Wednesday.

"At the Global Health Summit, Italy pledged to donate 15 million doses by the end of the year, primarily through COVAX, nearly half of those have already been distributed. And today I am glad to announce that we stand ready to triple our efforts, we will donate 30 million additional doses by the end of the year, reaching 45 million, "Draghi stated.

Draghi also mentioned that the World Bank and the World Health Organization must be involved in the global vaccination campaign, as well as other financial mediators, to ensure vaccine production and transportation processes.

Italy's vaccine portfolio includes Pfizer, Moderna, Janssen, and AstraZeneca. A total of nearly 41,500,000 people in Italy have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, which is more than two thirds of the population.
18:39 GMT 22.09.2021
Blinken Says US to Convene World Leaders in Coming Months About COVID-19 Commitments
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said during remarks at the Virtual COVID-19 Summit that he and President Joe Biden will both be convening foreign leaders in the coming months to hold follow-up meetings about recent COVID-19 commitments.

“I plan to personally convene foreign ministers before the end of the year to make sure we’re following up the commitments made at this summit as well as the G20, and President Biden will convene heads of state on this issue in the first quarter of 2022,” Blinken said.

Biden proposed such a meeting during his own remarks earlier in the day at the Virtual COVID-19 Summit, which is being held on the margins of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) High-Level Week.

Recent US commitments include providing $370 million for global vaccine administration efforts, more than $380 million for the Global Vaccine Alliance, and nearly $1.4 billion for bulk oxygen support, expanded testing, and health care system resilience efforts worldwide.
18:23 GMT 22.09.2021
Indian Authorities to Pay $676 to Families of Those Who Died From COVID-19
The Indian authorities will pay 50,000 rupees ($676.9) to the relatives of those who died from the coronavirus, according to a statement, submitted to the Supreme Court by the country's government.

The funds will be disbursed by state governments from their disaster response emergency funds within a month after the required documents are submitted.

India remains the second country in the world in terms of the number of recorded Covid-19 cases. According to the Indian Health Ministry, since the beginning of the pandemic in the country, the total number of infected with coronavirus exceeds 33.5 million. More than 32.7 million people have recovered, while over 445,000 have died.
18:21 GMT 22.09.2021
US-EU Task Force to Beat COVID-19 Pandemic Meets in Washington
The task force set by the United States and the European Union this summer to beat the global COVID-19 pandemic by vaccinating the world population met this week in Washington to finalize its mission statement, the White House said on Wednesday.

"This week, the task force met in Washington, DC to finalize the mission statement of this task force," the statement said.

The mission will focus on three priority work strands: monitoring global supply chains for COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics, addressing "critical supply chain bottlenecks and other disruptive factors for global vaccine production and coordinating initiatives to boost global production of COVID-19 vaccines, therapeutics and their production and ancillary supplies, the statement explained.

"Ending the COVID-19 pandemic through global cooperation remains our first priority. That cooperation includes efforts toward smooth manufacturing and supply chains for COVID-19 vaccines and therapeutics," the statement said.

In June, the European Union and the United States agreed to establish a joint vaccine task force to aid the goal of vaccinating at least two-thirds of the global population by the end of next year. According to European Council President Charles Michel, the initiative will help achieve this goal by boosting global vaccine production and keeping supply chains open.
18:16 GMT 22.09.2021
UN Confirms Brazil Delegation at UNGA Isolated After Delegate Tests Positive for COVID-19
The United Nations has confirmed that the Brazilian delegation at the UN General Assembly was isolated after a delegate tested positive for COVID-19, but the delegate did not meet with UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, UN spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said on Wednesday.

"We were informed last night by the Permanent Mission that a delegate who was in the General Assembly Hall yesterday morning tested positive for COVID-19 later in the day. We are working closely with this Permanent Mission on necessary follow-up actions. The delegate in question did not meet with the Secretary-General," Dujarric said.

The United Nations has looked into the potential exposure of UN staff who had been present in the General Assembly Hall and contact tracing is being finalized.

"UN staff who might have been in contact with the infected person will be notified individually and guided through next steps. At present, no close contacts amongst UN staff have been identified. The Member State has confirmed that the complete delegation has decided to self-quarantine for fourteen days," Dujarric added.
17:49 GMT 22.09.2021
Members of Brazilian Delegation at UNGA Self-Isolate After One COVID-19 Case Confirmed Among Them, Source Says
16:11 GMT 22.09.2021
Brazilian Health Minister Feels Fine After Contracting COVID-19
Brazilian Health Minister Marcelo Queiroga said on Wednesday he had only mild COVID-19 symptoms, after testing positive for the disease.

"I'm fine, I have mild symptoms, like a mild flu," he told Brazilian Globo News.

Queiroga, who is vaccinated, said that he had no shortness of breath. He is under quarantine in New York and will return home after testing negative for the virus.

The minister arrived in the United States together with President Jair Bolsonaro, who spoke at the opening of the UN General Assembly leader-level debates on Tuesday.

Brazilian sanitary regulator Anvisa recommended that delegates who had contacts with Queiroga should self-isolate for 14 days. They are Bolsonaro and his wife, his chief of staff, and the ministers of justice and tourism.
15:47 GMT 22.09.2021
Biden Announces $370Mln in US Funding to Help Deliver COVID-19 Vaccines Globally
US President Joe Biden announced on Wednesday during remarks at the Global COVID-19 Summit on the margins of the UN General Assembly that the US will be giving more than $370 million to help deliver and administer vaccines around the globe.

“We also know from experience that getting those vaccines into people’s arms may be the hardest logistical challenge we face. That’s why we need to significantly step up our investment in helping countries get shots in arms,” Biden said. “Today, the United States is also announcing that we’re providing an additional $370 million to support administering these shots and delivery globally.”

The US will also be providing more than $380 million to assist the Global Vaccine Alliance, which helps get vaccines to areas in the greatest need, he added.
15:41 GMT 22.09.2021
Ursula von der Leyen Announces Global Vaccination Partnership With US
15:27 GMT 22.09.2021
Biden: US Shipped 160 Mln COVID-19 Vaccine Doses to 100 Countries
15:25 GMT 22.09.2021
US President Hosts Virtual COVID-19 Summit
15:24 GMT 22.09.2021
Biden Says US Launching Vaccine Partnership With EU to Expand Global Vaccination
15:12 GMT 22.09.2021
UK Reports Over 34,000 More COVID-19 Cases, 166 New Deaths
13:42 GMT 22.09.2021
UK, South Korea to Swap 1Mln COVID-19 Vaccines to Boost Rollout, Health Ministry Says
The United Kingdom and South Korea agreed to swap over one million of COVID-19 vaccine doses in order to boost the rollout over the fall-winter period, the UK Health Ministry said Wednesday.

"The UK and the Republic of Korea will share COVID-19 vaccine doses to mutually support the rollout of the lifesaving vaccine in each nation, the government has announced today," the statement said.

Under the swap deal, London will send over 1 million of Pfizer/BioNTech vaccines that it has no immediate demand for to South Korea to assist with the country's ongoing vaccination campaign, the ministry stated. The first batch is expected to arrive in the coming weeks.

In turn, Seoul will return the same amount of doses to the UK before year-end to support London's booster program scheduled for the winter months, according to the ministry.

"By working closely with our friends in South Korea, this vaccine swap will maximise their rollout speed without having an impact on the UK’s vaccine programme," Sajid Javid, the UK health minister, said in a statement.

The deal will also not affect the UK's existing COVAX commitments, the minister noted.

In early September, the UK signed a similar vaccine swap deal with Australia.

Currently, almost 90% of the UK population aged over 16 have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, while nearly 70% have received both. South Korea aims to hit the target of fully vaccinating 70% of its adult population by the end of October.
13:19 GMT 22.09.2021
US to Donate Additional 500Mln COVID-19 Vaccine Doses to Poor Countries, White House Says
The United States is buying 500 million more doses of Pfizer's COVID-19 vaccine that it plans to donate to low-income and developing countries, the White House said.

"President Biden will announce that the U.S. is purchasing an additional 500 million Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines to donate to low- and lower-middle income countries around the world," a senior Administration official said in a press release.

The doses will bring the total number of shots the United States plans to donate to 1.1 billion, the official explained. The vaccines will be provided "free of charge, no strings attached," according to the statement.

Biden is expected to make the announcement at a COVID-19 summit the US is hosting at the United Nations on Wednesday, where he plans to call on other countries to make their own contributions with the goal of vaccinating 70 percent of the world's population by next September.

The donation comes as the United States and other wealthy countries face withering criticism from the likes of the World Health Organization for the slow pace of vaccination in poor nations caused by lack of vaccines.
12:49 GMT 22.09.2021
Vietnam Registers 11,527 New COVID-19 Cases
12:00 GMT 22.09.2021
Thailand Detects 11,252 New Coronavirus Cases
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