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COVID-19 WRAP | 1,222 new cases recorded in SA

02 May 2021 - 07:22 By TimesLIVE
Egyptian Christians celebrate Mass at the Armenian Catholic Church as Egypt ramps up efforts to slow the spread of Covid-19, in Cairo, Egypt, on May 1 2021.
Egyptian Christians celebrate Mass at the Armenian Catholic Church as Egypt ramps up efforts to slow the spread of Covid-19, in Cairo, Egypt, on May 1 2021.
Image: REUTERS/Mohamed Abd El Ghany

May 2 2021 - 21:05

1,222 new Covid-19 cases recorded in SA

There were 1,222 new Covid-19 cases recorded in SA, according to the latest stats released by the health department on Sunday.

The cumulative number of cases is at 1,584,064.

There were also 11 deaths recorded, bringing the total to 54,417. 

May 2 2021 - 20:24

Mexico's confirmed coronavirus death toll rises to 217,233

Mexico's health ministry on Sunday reported 1,093 new confirmed coronavirus cases and 65 more deaths, bringing the total number of cases in the country to 2,347,780 and fatalities to 217,233.

Separate government data published in March suggested the actual death toll may be at least 60% above the confirmed figure.


May 2 2021 - 20:15

France reports 113 new Covid-19 deaths, lowest since October

France reported 113 new coronavirus deaths in hospitals on Sunday, down from 195 on Saturday, and the lowest since October, health ministry data showed, on the eve of an easing of the country's lockdown restrictions.

The number of people in intensive care rose by 4 over 24 hours, to 5,585, halting five consecutive days of decline.

There were also 9,888 new confirmed virus infections, taking the total to 5.65 million - the world's fourth highest.

France's death toll since the start of the epidemic stands at 104,819, the eighth highest tally globally.


May 2 2021 - 19:29

Turkey's Covid-19 death toll 340 as lockdown sets in

Turkey logged 340 coronavirus-related deaths and 25,980 new cases in the last 24 hours, health ministry data showed on Sunday, the third day of a nationwide lockdown, including curfews, closed schools and many shuttered businesses.

Turkey ranks fourth globally in daily cases based on a seven-day average, according to a Reuters tally, down from second briefly last month.

After easing measures in early March, President Tayyip Erdogan's government reversed course as infections surged to record highs.

Turkey had a record 394 virus-related deaths on Friday, though new cases have dropped since April 21.


May 2 2021 - 18:35

Britain to send 1,000 more ventilators to India

Britain will send another 1,000 ventilators to India, the government said on Sunday, stepping up its support as India's healthcare system struggles to cope with a huge surge in cases of Covid-19.

India has reported more than 300,000 daily cases for more than 10 days straight, leaving hospitals, morgues and crematoriums overwhelmed.

The British government had previously agreed to send 600 medical devices, including ventilators and oxygen concentrators.

Other nations, including the US, Germany and Pakistan, are also providing support as the number of infections daily in India reached 392,488, with a total death toll of over 215,000.

May 2 2021 - 18:12

France reports 113 more Covid-19 deaths, 5,581 in intensive care

The number of Covid-19 patients in intensive care units in France rose by 4 to 5,581 on Sunday, halting five consecutive days of decline, health ministry data showed.

The ministry also reported 113 new coronavirus deaths in hospitals on Sunday, compared with 195 on Saturday. 


May 2 2021 - 17:59

Saudi Arabia to open land, sea, air borders as of May 17

Saudi Arabia will lift its suspension on citizens travelling abroad and open land, sea and air borders on Monday May 17, the interior ministry said in a statement on Sunday.

Saudi citizens who have received two vaccination shots, or one shot at least two weeks prior to travel, those who have recovered from coronavirus within the last six months and those who are under 18 years old will be allowed to travel, the ministry said.

Saudi citizens have largely been barred from travel since March 2020, when the kingdom first banned all travel in and out of the country as Covid-19 began spreading worldwide.


May 2 2021 - 15:47

First batch of Pfizer vaccines expected in SA by midnight on Sunday

The first batch of Pfizer vaccines — 325,260 doses — is expected to arrive in SA shortly before midnight on Sunday amid strict security measures, health minister Zweli Mkhize said in a statement.

He said on arrival, the entire batch will be transported initially to a central warehouse while samples will be sent to the National Control Laboratory for quality assurance. After clearance, it will be distributed to the various provinces.

May 2 2021 - 15:18

German hospital chief sees first signs of Covid easing

Stable new Covid-19 infection numbers in Germany are fuelling hopes that intensive care units won't be overburdened, the head of the German hospital federation (DKG) told the mass tabloid newspaper Bild.

"The majority of hospitals in Germany are feeling a first, slight easing," DKG president Gerald Gass was quoted as saying. "We are looking at about two weeks of relatively constant numbers in terms of new infections, which gives us confidence that we don't have to be concerned about an exponential rise in patients in need of intensive care."

Bild said that 5,019 coronavirus patients were currently being treated in intensive care units around Germany, down from a peak of 5,106 hit on April 26 amid the country's third wave of the pandemic.

Gass said the pressure on hospitals and staff remained very high.


May 2 2021 - 15:14

Wuhan music festival: Thousands watch live acts in city where Covid-19 emerged

Thousands of people attended the first day of the Wuhan Strawberry Music Festival on Saturday.

In warm conditions on the first day of a five-day May Day national holiday revellers in the central Chinese city danced, bounced and screamed with delight as some of their favourite acts took the stage.

The festival was making a return in Wuhan after it was forced to be online only last year due to Covid-19 restrictions.

People in Wuhan, where Covid-19 first emerged, lived through more than two months of stringent restrictions during the world's first coronavirus-induced lockdown. Since then the city has been almost completely virus-free, according to official data. 

May 2 2021 - 14:06

Education department still considering normal five-day schooling for all primary school pupils

The department of basic education is considering the possibility of allowing all primary school  pupils to return to school on a full-time basis.

In a statement, education ministry spokesperson Elijah Mhlanga said: “The department is currently investigating the possibility of returning all learners at primary school level due to the learning losses suffered as a direct result of the coronavirus pandemic. The proposal is now being considered at the national joint operational and intelligence structure.

“The council of education ministers will also consider the matter this week. An announcement on the outcome of the discussions will be made in due course,” he added.

May 2 2021 - 12:25

India's Covid-19 daily cases hold close to record, another state imposes lockdown

India's new coronavirus cases dipped marginally on Sunday but deaths due to the infection jumped by a record 3,689, with one more state going into lockdown as the nation's creaky healthcare system is unable to cope with a massive caseload.

Authorities reported 392,488 new cases in the previous 24 hours to push total cases to 19.56 million. So far, the virus has killed 215,542 people.

Indian hospitals, morgues and crematoriums have been overwhelmed as the country has reported more than 300,000 daily cases for more than 10 days straight. Many families have been left on their own to scramble for medicines and oxygen.

May 2 2021 - 11:00

Russia reports 8,697 new Covid-19 cases, 342 deaths

Russia reported 8,697 new Covid-19 cases on Sunday, including 2,699 in Moscow, taking the official national tally since the pandemic began to 4,823,255.

The government coronavirus task force said 342 people had died of coronavirus-linked causes in the past 24 hours, pushing Russia's death toll to 110,862.

The federal statistics agency has kept a separate count and reported a toll of more than 225,000 from April 2020 to February.

According to Reuters calculations based on data from the state statistics agency published on Friday, Russia recorded more than 400,000 excess deaths from April 2020 to March 2021.


May 2 2021 - 07:14

Australia's Perth at risk of second snap-lockdown with three new Covid-19 infections

Australia's fourth-largest city faces prospects of its second snap lockdown in two weeks, officials said on Sunday, after a hotel quarantine security guard in Perth and two of his housemates tested positive for Covid-19.

Western Australia (WA) Premier Mark McGowan said late on Saturday he had yet to decide whether the state's capital city, which last week emerged from a three-day snap lockdown after reporting one Covid-19 infection, would go into lockdown on Sunday.

"Our restrictions in place, and the use of masks, and the ability of our contact tracers and testing give us the ability to hold on a lockdown decision," McGowan told reporters late on Saturday.

"But it is possible that this could change tomorrow, or the day after."