Coronavirus - 2 March


• 30.77% of UK population have received a vaccine
• Austria, Denmark and Israel form alliance to produce vaccines
• Only 24% uptake of AstraZeneca vaccine in France
• One-third of school year lost in the UK
• Turkey reopens restaurants and schools

World news

• Israel, the UAE and the UK have administered the highest number of vaccine doses per capita globally. In Israel, 93.5 doses have been given per 100 people, while in the UAE the figure is 60.87 and the UK, 30.77.

• New data suggest that a single dose of the Oxford/AstraZeneca or Pfizer vaccines reduces hospitalisation by 80%.

• Recently published data from the ONS suggests that 13% of under 11s and about 15% of 12-16-year-olds reported at least one symptom of long Covid five weeks after a confirmed infection.

• France has changed its stance on the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine, meaning it can now be given to people aged 65-74 with underlying health conditions.

• Only 273,000 doses of the AstraZeneca and Oxford University have been administered in France out of 1.7 million received as of end-February, according to health ministry figures. Uptake of the vaccine stood at 24%, compared to 82% for Pfizer’s and 37% for Moderna’s.

• Austria has announced plans to develop vaccines with Denmark and Israel. The countries’ leaders are to meet in Israel on Thursday. Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz said the EU’s European Medicines Agency (EMA) was too slow to approve vaccines.

• Slovakia has begun accepting the Russian Sputnik V vaccine before EMA approval.

• Nigeria is due to receive nearly 4 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine today in its first delivery from the global Covax scheme.

• Save the Children charity has said children have lost on average more than a third of the standard school year because of the virus. The number of lost school days is particularly high in poorer regions where online teaching has been more difficult.

• The Israeli Government is looking to buy an additional 36 million vaccines in case booster shots are needed later in the year.

• According to a poll conducted by the Levada Center, 62% of Russians do not want the Russian Sputnik V vaccine. The poll, which sampled 1,601 people in 50 regions, also found that 64% of people thought coronavirus was created as a biological weapon.

• Turkey is lifting weekend lockdowns in low- and medium-risk cities and limiting restrictions to just Sundays in high- and very high-risk cities. Istanbul, was categorised as high risk, while Ankara was in the medium risk category.

• Czechia has tightened lockdown measures, with new restrictions limiting travels to people’s hometowns and districts – except for trips to work or other exemptions.

• New figures from the global energy watchdog found that fossil fuel emissions rose over the second half of the year as major economies began to recover. By December 2020, carbon emissions were 2% higher than in the same month the year before.

• Iraq today received 50,000 Sinopharm vaccines donated by China

• The Brazil variant appears to be more contagious and able to re-infect at 25-60%, a detailed study by the University of São Paulo.