The screening of children for clinical trials of Covaxin will start at AIIMS in Delhi soon, days after similar trials started at AIIMS in Patna, sources have said. The All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS) in the national capital will conduct clinical trials of the COVID-19 vaccine made by Bharat Biotech to see if it is suitable for children between two and 18 years old.
Experts have warned that a possible third wave can bring as much devastation as the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic if enough people are not vaccinated against the virus, and that children could be its prime target.
Meanwhile, India added 1.14 lakh new coronavirus cases on Sunday while deaths from COVID-19 rose by 2,667. The country’s overall case load now stands at 2.88 crore, while total fatalities are at 3.46 lakh, according to the health ministry.
Britain’s health minister has said that the Delta variant of the coronavirus, first identified in India, is estimated to be 40 percent more transmissible than the Alpha variant that caused the last wave of infections in the UK.
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One hundred former presidents, prime ministers and foreign ministers have urged the Group of Seven (G7) rich nations to pay for global coronavirus vaccinations to help stop the virus mutating and returning as a worldwide threat. The leaders made their appeal ahead of a G7 summit in England which begins on Friday, when US President Joe Biden will meet the leaders of Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Canada and Japan.
In their letter to the G7, the former world leaders said global cooperation had failed in 2020, but that 2021 could usher in a new era. “Support from the G7 and G20 that makes vaccines readily accessible to low- and middle-income countries is not an act of charity, but rather is in every country’s strategic interest,” the letter said.
Brazil has had 39,637 new cases of the novel coronavirus reported in the past 24 hours, and 873 deaths from COVID-19, the health ministry said on Sunday. The numbers reflect a weekend drop in registered cases and deaths. On a rolling seven-day average, Brazil is reporting more than 1,800 deaths a day.
The South American country has now registered 16,947,062 cases since the pandemic began, while the official death toll has risen to 473,404, according to ministry data, in the world’s third worst outbreak outside the United States and India, and its second-deadliest.
Union Minister for Civil Aviation Hardeep Singh Puri said that more than 9 million people have been facilitated under the Vande Bharat Mission so far. The Vande Bharat Mission was started in early May last year to evacuate Indians stranded abroad due to coronavirus-induced travel restrictions.
Taking on Twitter, Mr Puri said that the Vande Bharat Mission has been a learning experience. “World’s largest repatriation mission, VBM has been a learning experience and has given us a template for managing missions of this magnitude in the future. More than 9 million people have been facilitated since May 6, 2020,” the Union Minister tweeted.