India’s health ministry Friday reported 81,466 new COVID cases in the previous 24-hour period. The new tally is the South Asian country’s highest daily count in six months. The western state of Maharashtra has more than half of the new cases with 43,183.
India has 12.3 million COVID infections. Only the U.S and Brazil have more cases, with 30.5 million and 12.8 million respectively, according to Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center. Hopkins reports there are more than 129.6 million global infections.
In Brazil’s largest city, gravediggers are exhuming bodies from old graves to make way for the latest victims of the coronavirus. Gravediggers in hazmat suits are working diligently in Sao Paulo’s Vila Nova Cachoeirinha cemetery to accommodate the growing number of bodies.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said Thursday that vaccine manufacturer Moderna will be allowed to place 15 doses of its COVID vaccine in the same size vial that the pharmaceutical company has been using to contain 10 doses.
Moderna said in a statement on its website that “the 15-dose vials will begin shipping in the coming weeks.”
Chris Whitty, England’s chief medical officer, said recently during a Royal Society of Medicine webinar that the coronavirus “is not going to go away.” He said, “We are going to have to manage it rather like we manage the flu. ... We have to accept that.”
The World Health Organization says Europe’s COVID-19 vaccination efforts are “unacceptably slow” in the face of a new surge of the virus and new, more contagious variants.
Dr. Hans Kluge, WHO’s European director, issued a statement Thursday urging the continent’s leaders to “speed up the process by ramping up manufacturing, reducing barriers to administering vaccines, and using every single vial we have in stock, now.”
The number of new infections across Europe had fallen below 1 million just five weeks ago, but the global health agency says those numbers have since surged to 1.6 million new cases, with nearly 24,000 deaths.
Kluge said barely 10% of people across Europe have received at least one dose of a vaccine, with just 4% fully vaccinated.