Corona .. a record number in France and Spain, and the cancellation of the New Year celebrations in Italy

Video duration 02 minutes 52 seconds

The health authorities in France and Spain recorded a record number of infections with the emerging coronavirus (Covid-19), and while Italy rushed to ban public celebrations of the New Year, the United States announced the approval of two drugs to treat the virus.

With the outbreak of the mutated “Omicron” continuing on the European continent, France recorded more than 91,000 new infections with the Corona virus on Thursday, the largest number of daily infections ever recorded since the outbreak of the pandemic.

The death toll has also risen as the country faces a fifth wave of the virus. “Today’s numbers are not good,” French Health Minister Olivier Veran said.

The ministry’s data also showed that France recorded 179 more deaths in hospitals during the past 24 hours, while the number of Covid-19 patients in intensive care units reached 3,208, an increase of 61 patients from the previous day.

record score

In Spain, Thursday, the death toll from Corona virus infections increased by 250%, to about 73 thousand cases.

And the Spanish Ministry of Health reported that it had monitored 72,918 cases of coronavirus, Thursday.

For the third day in a row, Spain broke its epidemiological record for daily cases, after recording about 49,800 injuries on Tuesday and 60,000 on Wednesday.

Last Thursday, the country recorded less than 29,000 cases.

In this context, the government reintroduced the mandatory wearing of masks outside, starting from Friday, and the Spanish judiciary allowed the imposition of a night curfew in most parts of Catalonia.

tight restrictions

To limit the spread of the epidemic, the Italian authorities decided to tighten restrictions to curb a significant increase in Covid-19 infections, as all public celebrations of the New Year were banned, with daily infections rising to a record level.

Health Minister Roberto Speranza said that the mask will be mandatory in transportation and public places such as theaters, cinemas and sporting events.

Moreover, parties and gatherings in open spaces will be banned until January 31, and dance halls and clubs will be closed until that date, in an effort to prevent large gatherings during the holiday period.

The announcement came on a day when Italy recorded a record increase in Corona injuries, amounting to 44,595 cases, an increase of more than 70% in just a week, with the spread of the highly contagious Omicron strain throughout the country.

Omicron is spreading rapidly all over the world (Getty Images)

high risk

For its part, the German government intends to include Spain and Portugal, starting tomorrow, Saturday, among the high-risk areas for Corona infection, due to the large numbers of injuries in the two countries, which are among the favorite tourist destinations for Germans.

On the other hand, the German Robert Koch Institute for Virus Research announced Thursday that Austria had been removed from this list.

Once a country is included in this list by the institute, the German Foreign Office automatically issues a warning against unnecessary travel to it. This warning allows tourists to cancel trips without fines, but this warning does not mean a travel ban.

This comes as the number of COVID-19 cases since the start of the pandemic has exceeded 100 million across the American continent, according to the Pan American Health Organization.

More than half (51 million) cases have been reported in the United States and 22 million in Brazil.

Covid-19 Testing Sites as Omicron variant threat growsA tent for COVID-19 testing in New York State (Anatolia)

Medicines and uses

In a related context, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorized, Thursday, the emergency use of an anti-Covid-19 drug in adults at high risk produced by the Merck laboratory, the day after allowing the use of a similar pill developed by Pfizer. .

This drug can be taken in the five days following the onset of symptoms of infection, and it reduces the risk of hospitalization and death by 30% for those in poor health.

On Wednesday, the FDA approved a similar treatment from Pfizer marketed as “Paxlovid”, and it reduces the same risks by 90%, according to preliminary studies.

Pfizer medication consists of two tablets taken twice a day for 5 days, and this medication can be given to patients who are prone to serious forms of the disease and over the age of 12 years.

As for Merck’s treatment, molnupiravir, it consists of 8 doses per day for 5 days, and it works by interfering with the virus’s genome to cause mutations that limit its reproduction.

And the US Food and Drug Administration stressed – in its statement – that these two treatments are a complement to the vaccine, which remains the main tool in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic.

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