Hello and welcome to today’s live coverage of the coronavirus pandemic with me, Helen Sullivan.
Europe passed the grim milestone of one million coronavirus deaths on Monday, as the World Health Organization warned that infections are rising exponentially despite widespread efforts aimed at stopping them.
Meanwhile India has approved the use of Russian Sputnik V vaccine, the Russian Direct Investment Fund said on Monday, confirming earlier reports of its imminent endorsement.
India overtook Brazil to become the nation with the second highest number of infections worldwide after the United States, as it battles a second wave, having given about 105 million doses among a population of 1.4 billion.
Here are the key developments from the last few hours:
- The UK has reported the highest number of new Covid-19 cases since 1 April on Monday, with 3,568 new cases reported. A further 13 people were reported as having died within 28 days of a positive test for Covid-19, taking the total number of deaths on the measure to 127,100.
- Turkey’s coronavirus taskforce will recommend a tougher set of restrictions as the country battles its third wave, health minister Fahrettin Koca said on Monday in comments reported by Reuters.
- Authorities are rolling out surge testing in parts of south London after cases of the South African Covid-19 variant were detected.
- The Canadian province of Ontario is shutting schools and moving to remote learning due to rising infection levels, premier Doug Ford said on Monday. He did not say when pupils would return to in-person teaching, Reuters reports.
- Ireland will only administer the AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine to people over 60, the country’s chief medical officer said Monday, after it was linked to rare blood clotting cases, according to AFP.
- Three Covid-19 patients died on Monday in an intensive care unit in Bucharest after the oxygen supply system failed, the emergency situations department (DSU) said in a statement reported by AFP.
- All over-50s in England have been offered a coronavirus vaccine a few days before the mid-April deadline set by the government – meaning the second phase of the rollout to younger cohorts can now begin.
- Brazil’s Supreme Court is set to approve a congressional inquiry into President Jair Bolsonaro’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic but will leave the Senate to decide when it takes place, a source told Reuters.
- Confusion and complacency in addressing Covid-19 means the pandemic is a long way from being over, but it can be brought under control in months with proven public health measures, the WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said.
- Japan has expanded its vaccination programme to people aged over 64, amid concern that the country is entering a fourth wave of coronavirus infections.