WHO says you may catch the coronavirus more than once, France buys chloroquine from China, Poles protest against lockdown

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“There is currently no evidence that people who have recovered from Covid-19 and have antibodies are protected from a second infection,” the United Nations agency said in an April 24 statement.

The WHO guidance came after some governments suggested that people who have antibodies to the coronavirus could be issued an “immunity passport” or “risk-free certificate” that would allow them to travel or return to work, based on the assumption that they were safe from re-infection, according to the statement. People issued such a certificate could ignore public-health guidance, increasing the risk of the disease spreading further.


– The French military buys the anti-malarial drug chloroquine from China as a precaution in case it becomes an approved medication for the coronavirus.

– The UK, which is close to the grim milestone of 20,000 COVID-19 deaths, prepares to start trials to verify whether plasma collected from donors who have recovered from the disease could prove effective in treating severely unwell patients.

– Hundreds of Polish workers in Germany held a protest in the border town of Zgorzelec over the imposition of a two-week lockdown to stop people entering its territory.

– Belgium is set for a gradual easing of restriction measures from 4 May, followed by phases of further re-opening during next month.

– Poland’s health minister sought a delay of the presidential election scheduled for 10 May, saying that a two-year postponement should be considered in light of the disease.

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148 coronavirus cases confirmed on cruise ship docked in Japan: official

Nearly 150 cases of coronavirus infection have been confirmed among crew members of an Italian cruise ship docked in Japan after health authorities finished testing everyone on board, an official said on Saturday.

The Nagasaki prefecture official said 57 more crew had tested positive, bringing the total infections on board the Costa Atlantica to 148, roughly one quarter of the vessel’s 623 crew members.

Authorities began testing after one crew member tested positive for the virus earlier this week. No passengers are on board the vessel, which has been docked in Nagasaki in southwestern Japan since February for repairs and maintenance after the pandemic prevented scheduled repairs in China.


India reopens stores, speeding easing of virus lockdowns

NEW DELHI: A tentative easing around the world of coronavirus lockdowns gathered pace Saturday (April 25) with the reopening in India of neighbourhood stores that many of the country’s 1.3 billion people rely on for everything from cold drinks to mobile phone data cards.

The relaxation of the super-strict Indian lockdown came with major caveats.

It did not apply to hundreds of quarantined towns and other hotspots that have been hit hardest by the outbreak that has killed at least 775 people in India and terrified its multitudes of poor who live hand-to-mouth in slum conditions too crowded for social distancing.

Shopping malls also remained closed across the country. Still, for families that run small stores, being able to reopen and earn again brought relief.


The United States’ reported coronavirus deaths approach 52,000, over a quarter of the world’s known tally

(CNN)Less than three months since the first known coronavirus death in the US, the country’s reported fatalities make up more than a quarter of the world’s known Covid-19 death toll.

Nearly 52,000 Americans have died of the virus so far — a number that increases daily as a result of new fatalities and states reviewing previous deaths that had not been tied to the disease.
The virus has killed at least 197,000 people worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University.


Two New York cats become first US pets to test positive for Covid-19

Two cats in New York have become the first pets in the country to test positive for Covid-19 but there is no evidence pets can spread the virus to humans, according to US health authorities.

The cats, from separate areas of New York state, had mild respiratory illness and are expected to make a full recovery. It is believed that they contracted the virus from people in their households or neighbourhoods, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

“Animals, pets, can get infected. There’s no evidence that the virus is transmitted from the pet to a human,” Dr Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said at the daily coronavirus briefing.

There are few known Covid-19 infections of pets globally.

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, one cat in Hong Kong tested positive without displaying symptoms, while a cat in Belgium recovered nine days after falling ill.

Five tigers and three lions at the Bronx Zoo in New York have also tested positive for Covid-19, including one tiger who never developed a cough, according to the Wildlife Conservation Society, the non-profit which runs the zoo.

“Our cats were infected by a staff person who was asymptomatically infected with the virus or before that person developed symptoms,” the WCS said on Wednesday local time.

“All eight cats continue to do well. They are behaving normally, eating well, and their coughing is greatly reduced.”


“There is currently no evidence that people who have recovered from Covid-19 and have antibodies are protected from a second infection,” the United Nations agency said in an April 24 statement.





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