Indonesia receives first shipment of COVID-19 vaccine: Live news | News

Millions of people across California prepare for strict restrictions within hours as the US state records more than 30,000 cases in a day.

And in the UK, the first doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine are set to be administered on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Indonesia received its first shipment of coronavirus vaccine from China with over a million doses.

Globally, COVID-19 deaths have surpassed 1.5 million with more than 67 million infections.

8 mins ago (08:56 GMT)
France unlikely to reach 5,000 daily cases goal

Eric Caumes, one of France’s top coronavirus experts said today that the number of new cases per day is unlikely to fall to a 5,000 target by December 15, as the population is not sufficiently respecting social distancing measures.

The head of infectious diseases at Paris hospital La Pitié-Salpêtrière, also warned that if the French are not cautious enough over Christmas and year-end holidays, it will lead to a third wave of the virus in mid-January.

President Emmanuel Macron has said the French lockdown could be lifted on December 15, if by then the number of new infections per day has fallen to 5,000.

Chef Louis-Philippe D’Introno serves customers outside the Cafe Le Bex in Paris, as the French government keeps bars and restaurants closed [Charles Platiau/Reuters]

18 mins ago (08:46 GMT)
Russia approves clinical trials for Chinese vaccine

Russia has granted approval for clinical trials to be held for the Chinese COVID-19 vaccine Ad5-Ncov involving 8,000 volunteers, according to the Interfax news agency.

Ad5-nCoV is a vaccine candidate co-developed by CanSino Biologics and a Chinese military-backed research unit.

24 mins ago (08:40 GMT)
Indonesia received 1.2 million Chinese vaccine doses

Indonesia has received 1.2 million doses of a COVID-19 vaccine made by China’s Sinovac, officials said, as the world’s fourth most populous nation struggles to get soaring case rates under control.

The doses arrived in Jakarta late Sunday on a flight from Beijing, with another 1.8 million expected to be sent again next month.

Although Chinese regulators have yet to clear any of the country’s vaccines for mass distribution, they have approved some advanced candidates for emergency use.

Workers in Indonesia spray disinfectant over a container containing coronavirus vaccines made by the Chinese company Sinovac, upon arrival at the Soekarno-Hatta International Airport in Tangerang, Indonesia [Indonesian Presidential Palace via AP]

1 hour ago (07:54 GMT)
Britain’s vaccine distribution under way

Britain is getting ready to administer the first doses of the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine on Tuesday, with the National Health System giving top priority to vaccinating the over-80s, frontline healthcare workers and care home staff and residents.

The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine needs to be kept at -70C (-94F) and only lasts five days in a regular fridge. For that reason, it will first be administered in 50 hospitals. About 800,000 doses are expected to be available within the first week.

1 hour ago (07:46 GMT)
International flights back to Melbourne after 5 months

The Australian city of Melbourne welcomed its first international passenger flight in five months, an arrival that will test the state of Victoria’s revamped hotel quarantine system.

The state of Victoria reopened to international flights following an extended closure due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, in Melbourne [James Ross/Reuters]More than 20,000 infections were recorded in Victoria earlier this year when hotel staff contracted the virus from people returning from overseas. The outbreak has been widely blamed on failures of private contractors to follow protocol.

The new system will greet Australians arriving on a flight from Sri Lanka, who will now no longer be allowed to leave their rooms under the new hotel quarantine restrictions.

Travellers arrive at a hotel in Melbourne where Australians returning from overseas will quarantine as part of precautions against the Covid-19 coronavirus [William West/AFP]

2 hours ago (07:00 GMT)
India’s Serum Institute seeks approval for vaccine

The Serum Institute of India, the world’s largest vaccine producer by volume, has sought government approval for emergency-use authorisation of the coronavirus vaccine that it has developed in partnership with the University of Oxford and British drugmaker AstraZeneca.

“As promised, before the end of 2020, @SerumInstIndia has applied for emergency use authorisation for the first made-in-India vaccine, COVISHIELD,” the company CEO Adar Poonawalla said on Twitter.

As promised, before the end of 2020, @SerumInstIndia has applied for emergency use authorisation for the first made-in-India vaccine, COVISHIELD. This will save countless lives, and I thank the Government of India and Sri @narendramodi ji for their invaluable support.

— Adar Poonawalla (@adarpoonawalla) December 7, 2020

The experimental vaccine can be stored at two to eight degrees Celsius and can be distributed more easily in India, which has the world’s second-highest number of infections at 9.6 million.

Read the full story here.

2 hours ago (07:00 GMT)
Military to help with COVID-19 surge in S Korea, Japan

South Korea and Japan are deploying their militaries to assist healthcare workers in combatting COVID-19, with South Korean soldiers called in to expand coronavirus testing and tracing and Japanese military nurses tapped to fill a shortage of staff at hospitals in the hard-hit regions of Hokkaido and Osaka.

A medical worker holds a portable fan during in sweltering heat while police officers are tested for COVID-19 at a makeshift clinic at the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency in Seoul, South Korea [File: Ahn Young-joon/AFP)Moon Jae-in, the president of South Korea, ordered the government to mobilise “every available” resource to track infections and to expand testing by deploying the military and more people from the public service, presidential Blue House spokesman Chung Man-ho told a briefing.

Read the full story here.

2 hours ago (07:00 GMT)
California imposes stay-at-home order

A new stay-at-home order has been be imposed on Southern California and the San Joaquin Valley, as the coronavirus crisis spirals out of control with a speed that has exceeded health officials’ most dire projections.

Some 33 million Californians will be subject to the new order, representing 84 percent of the state’s population. The state mandated the restrictions in the Southland and Central Valley as capacity in hospital intensive care units hit dangerously low levels.

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