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New York state to reopen with phased strategy: Governor

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Andrew Cuomo New York

New York, April 27 : The US state of New York will restart its economy after the peak of the coronavirus outbreak in a multi-phase manner, Governor Andrew Cuomo said.

The strategy is to first reopen the construction and manufacturing sectors, and the second phase will be evaluating businesses on a case-by-case basis, depending on how essential they are, said Cuomo at his daily briefing on Sunday, reported Xinhua news agency.

There will be two weeks in between each phase to monitor the effects of the reopening and ensure hospitalization and infection rates are not increasing.

“One caveat is you can’t do anything in any region that would increase the number of visitors to that region,” the governor said.

Cuomo did not give a specific date for the implementation of the strategy, but he said part of the state could begin reopening as soon as May 15 — the current deadline for the statewide shutdown.

The regions that would be more likely able to open sooner would be the upstate New York, where COVID-19 infections have been relatively low in the state, said Cuomo.

The reopening of the downstate region, which includes the hardest-hit New York City, Nassau County and Westchester, will be more complicated and requires regional coordination, he noted.

“Multi-state coordination is vital there because the New Jersey, Connecticut, New York City area is basically very intermixed,” said Cuomo. “People are going and coming, they live in one place, work in another, so that coordination is important.”

New York state continued to see a declining trend of total hospitalizations and net intubations, and the daily fatalities dropped to 367 on Saturday, according to the governor.

He also said the infection rate decreased to 0.8 in the state, referring to the situation where “10 positive people infect about eight others.”

“We must keep the rate below 1 to keep slowing the spread,” said Cuomo.

The state reported over 299,000 COVID-19 cases as the national total rose to nearly 962,000 by Sunday afternoon. Over 22,000 people statewide have died of the disease, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

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Earthquake of magnitude 4.1 strikes Jammu and Kashmir

They said while the tremors caused panic among people, there were no reports of any loss of life or injury or damage to property.

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Earthquake Strong

Srinagar, Jan 16 : An earthquake of magnitude 4.1 hit Jammu and Kashmir on Saturday, but there was no report of any damage, officials said.

At 10:01 pm, the earthquake struck at a latitude of 33.03 degrees north and a longitude of 75.93 degrees east — 93 kms east of Katra, they added.

The depth of the earthquake was 10 kms, the officials said.

They said while the tremors caused panic among people, there were no reports of any loss of life or injury or damage to property.

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Covaxin consent form says vax administered without ph-3 trial

The vaccine is first offered to the healthcare workers, frontline workers and those above 50 years of age, followed by the below-50 population with comorbidities, and finally to the remaining population based on disease epidemiology and vaccine availability.

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COVAXIN Corona Covid vaccine

New Delhi, Jan 16 : Amid the vaccinaton drive against Covid-19, it has emerged that there is a separate consent form for those who are administered the ‘Covaxin‘ vaccine manufactured by Bharat Biotech.

The form says that “In phase-1 and phase-2 clinical trial ‘Covaxin’ has demonstrated the ability to produce antibodies against Covid-19, however the clinical efficacy of Covaxin is yet to be established and it is still being studied in phase-3 clinical trial, hence it is important to appreciate that receiving the vaccine does not mean that the other precautions related to Covid-19 should not be followed.”

The form says that in case of any adverse and serious condition, the receiver will be provided utmost care at the health centre and in case of casuality the compensation will be provided by Bharat Biotech.

“The compensation for serious adverse event will be paid by sponsor BBIL if the SAE is proven to be casually related to the vaccine,” it said.

Serious concerns were raised in certain quarters including by opposition parties and Congress leader Manish Tewari has questioned the efficacy of ‘Covaxin’ while the Prime Minister has warned people not to believe in “rumours”.

The world’s biggest vaccination drive come almost a year after the first coronavirus case was detected in India, and since then the deadly virus has claimed over 1.5 lakh lives and infected one crore people. The first case came to the fore on January 30, 2020 in Kerala.

Two vaccines — the Oxford vaccine ‘Covishield’ manufactured by the Serum Institute of India, and indigenously developed ‘Covaxin’ by Bharat Biotech — will be administered to priority groups. So far, the central government has procured 1.1 crore Covishield and 55 lakh Covaxin vaccines at a cost of Rs 200 and Rs 206 per dose, respectively.

In Delhi, which has 81 vaccination sites, ‘Covaxin’ has been allotted to six Centre-run hospitals while 75 Delhi government and private hospitals will receive ‘Covishield’.

The vaccine is first offered to the healthcare workers, frontline workers and those above 50 years of age, followed by the below-50 population with comorbidities, and finally to the remaining population based on disease epidemiology and vaccine availability.

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Magnitude 6.7 Earthquake Hits Russia-Mongolia Border Region

The quake was at a depth of 10 kilometers

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AN earthquake of magnitude 6.7 struck the Russia-Mongolia Border Region on Tuesday, the GFZ German Research Center for Geosciences said.

The quake was at a depth of 10 kilometers, it added.

The epicenter of the earthquake was registered 277 kilometers southwest of the city of Angarsk, in the Russian Irkutsk region, and 30 kilometers from the Mongolian city of Turt, Russian state-owned news agency Sputnik reported. https://bit.ly/2XtgrJs

There were no immediate reports of damage or victims, the report said.

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