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COVID-19 WRAP | SA records 4,482 new confirmed Covid-19 cases in 24 hours

09 January 2022 - 07:53 By TimesLIVE
.Participants prepare to take part in an ice-bathing ceremony during the annual new year Shinto ritual to purify the body and soul at Teppozu Inari Shinto Shrine on January 9, 2022 in Tokyo, Japan. This years ceremony was scaled back and closed to the general public as a precaution against Covid-19.
.Participants prepare to take part in an ice-bathing ceremony during the annual new year Shinto ritual to purify the body and soul at Teppozu Inari Shinto Shrine on January 9, 2022 in Tokyo, Japan. This years ceremony was scaled back and closed to the general public as a precaution against Covid-19.
Image: Carl Court/Getty Images

January 09 2022 - 19:58

SA records 4,482 new confirmed Covid-19 cases in 24 hours

SA recorded 4,482 new confirmed Covid-19 cases in 24 hours, bringing the cumulative number of cases in the country to 3,526,054 since the start of the pandemic.

The national death toll of Covid related deaths is 92,453 after 82 daily deaths were recorded. 

The number of vaccines administered since the start of the rollout is 28,329,788 with 3,286,952 recoveries. 

January 09 2022 - 14:17

UK minister backs reduced Covid isolation period to ease workforce pressures

Reducing the self-isolation period for people who test positive for Covid-19 from seven days to five would help British employers that have been hard hit by absences, education minister Nadhim Zahawi said on Sunday.

The Omicron variant is still spreading in Britain and many businesses, schools and hospitals are struggling with staff shortages, fuelling calls for the rules on isolation after a positive test to be reduced further.

Last month, health authorities in the US shortened the recommended isolation time for asymptomatic cases of Covid-19 to five days from the previous guidance of 10 days.

-Reuters

January 09 2022 - 13:14

Relying on more home Covid-19 tests, Israel looks to lower costs

Israel sought on Sunday to ease access to home Covid-19 tests after a decision to allow most vaccinated people to use the kits to decide whether to quarantine led to shortages in shops and complaints about high prices.

“We are mindful of the public's distress,” Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said at the weekly cabinet meeting, announcing that every child in kindergarten or elementary school in Israel would be issued will three free kits in the coming days.

The government was also negotiating price reductions with major pharmacy chains, Bennett said, adding: “In any event, costs will come down in the near future because the market will be flooded with millions of kits that will arrive in Israel.”

-Reuters

January 09 2022 - 11:03

UK minister says reduced Covid-19 isolation period would help workers

British education minister Nadhim Zahawi said on Sunday a reduction in the self-isolation period for those who test positive for Covid-19 would be helpful for those workforces hit by absences,” I would obviously always defer to the scientific advice on this.

It would certainly help mitigate some of the pressures on schools, on critical workforce and others,” he told Sky News after being asked whether he backed a move to reduce the isolation period to five days from seven. 

-Reuters

January 09 2022 - 09:00

Restrictions imposed in several states in India as Covid-19 cases rise

India reported 159,632 new Covid-19 cases on Sunday, as the Omicron variant of the coronavirus continues to spread rapidly in the country, nudging several state governments to impose fresh restrictions.

India's richest state, Maharashtra, said on Saturday it would close swimming pools and gyms from Monday while schools and colleges have been closed till Feb 15 after daily cases in the state jumped to over 41,000.

The state government has said only fully vaccinated people will be allowed into private offices while limiting the capacity to 50% of the total workforce.

-Reuters

January 09 2022 - 08:45

Australia's New South Wales marks its highest Covid-19 death count

Australia's most populous state, New South Wales, recorded its highest number of daily Covid-19 deaths on Saturday as the Omicron variant sweeps the country and lawmakers face pressure to close widening supply chain gaps.

The home to Sydney and a third of Australia's 25 million people reported 16 deaths from the coronavirus in the previous day. New South Wales reported 30,062 new infections, near record levels.

The second-largest state, Victoria, which hosts the Australian Open tennis tournament this month, reported 44,155 new Covid-19 cases and four deaths.

-Reuters

January 09 2022 - 08:30

Hong Kong economy to be hit by Omicron wave, finance chief says

Hong Kong Financial Secretary Paul Chan expects the city’s economy to take a hit as a fifth wave of coronavirus infections sparked by the omicron variant takes hold.

The government has yet to give economic forecasts for 2022, which is expected during Chan’s annual budget speech in February, but he said in his blog post on Sunday that he will also take into account the global pandemic, supply-chain bottlenecks and changes in monetary policies by western central banks in making his predictions.

Economists at Morgan Stanley and Bloomberg Economics have already cut their economic growth forecasts for Hong Kong, citing the delayed reopening of borders with China amid the omicron wave. 

-Bloomberg

January 09 2022 - 08:00

Citigroup to enforce 'no jab, no job' policy

Citigroup will begin enforcing a ‘no jab, no job’ policy as of Jan. 14, making it the first major Wall Street institution to implement a strict Covid-19 vaccine mandate

January 09 2022 - 07:00

Omicron less likely to cause severe illness, studies show

The latest variant of the coronavirus is likely to infect lung tissue than previous strains, based on hospital admissions in SA and research on animals

January 09 2022 - 06:00

Stellenbosch researchers may have figured out what causes long Covid-19

A Stellenbosch University professor and her team may have cracked the mystery of what causes long Covid-19, which has hit up to 100-million people globally.

A study by professor Resia Pretorius, the head of physiological sciences, found that an overload of inflammatory molecules trapped inside microscopic blood clots could cause of some of long Covid-19’s symptoms.

Results of the research — using plasma samples from healthy individuals, those with type 2 diabetes, acute Covid-19 and long Covid-19 — have been published the journal Bioscience Reports.

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