Covid-19 has killed more than 3.3M people and infected nearly 160M others globally. Here are all the coronavirus-related developments for May 11:

A woman sprays disinfectant in a hotel room amid the coronavirus disease pandemic in Lisbon, Portugal on May 11, 2021.
A woman sprays disinfectant in a hotel room amid the coronavirus disease pandemic in Lisbon, Portugal on May 11, 2021. (Reuters)

Tuesday, May 11:

EU confident of Covid-19 travel certificate for summer

The European Commission expects to finish work soon on a certificate that could allow citizens to travel more easily this summer in the 27-nation bloc, the EU executive has said after a meeting with European affairs ministers.

The pass would allow those vaccinated, recovered or with negative test results to cross borders in a union where restrictions on movement have weighed heavily on the travel and tourism industry for more than a year.

"This is a priority for our citizens and therefore I believe we will deliver (on the certificate) before summer," Commission Vice-President Maros Sefcovic said after the meeting in Brussels. He said he expected a full roll-out by the summer.

UK reports more than 2,000 new cases

Britain has reported an additional 2,474 cases and 20 more deaths within 28 days of a positive test as the total number of people to have received the first dose of a vaccine reached 35,587,348, according to official data.

Turkey reports just under 14,500 new cases

A total of 14,497 cases, including 1,582 symptomatic patients, have been confirmed across Turkey, according to latest Health Ministry data.

Turkey’s overall case tally is now over 5.05 million, while the nationwide death toll has reached 43,589, with 278 fatalities over the past day.

Italy reports over 6,900 new cases

Italy has reported 251additional deaths, against 198 the day before, the Health Ministry said, while the daily tally of new infections rose to 6,946 from 5,080.

Italy has registered 123,282 deaths since its outbreak emerged in February last year, the second-highest toll in Europe after Britain and the seventh-highest in the world. 

The country has reported 4.1 million cases to date.

India PM won't attend UK G7 in person due to situation

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will not attend the G7 Summit in the UK in person, the Indian government has said, as the country reels from a massive wave of cases.

India is not part of the Group of Seven wealthy democracies but was invited to the talks by Britain, which holds the rotating presidency of the organisation throughout 2021.

"Given the prevailing Covid situation, it has been decided that the Prime Minister will not attend the G7 Summit in person," foreign ministry spokesman Arindam Bagchi said in a statement.

Slovakia suspends AstraZeneca first-dose jabs

Slovakia has suspended first doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, the Health Ministry said, after earlier signalling it was investigating the case of a vaccinated patient who died from a blood clot.

"Only people waiting for their second dose of this vaccine are currently being vaccinated with AstraZeneca," the health ministry said in a statement. "Using this company's vaccine for first-time doses has been suspended."

Pressure on French hospitals eases further

The number of patients in French hospitals has fallen further, Health Ministry data showed.

The ministry reported a total of 4,743 people in intensive care units down by 127 and the eight consecutive fall. 

The overall number of people in hospital with the virus also fell for the eight consecutive day and was down by 638 to 25,028.

The number of deaths in hospitals increased by 236 to 80,628, compared to an increase of 243 a week ago and 325 two weeks ago.

Mexico says US to share AstraZeneca vaccine after testing

Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has said that US Vice President Kamala Harris told his government the United States was willing to send AstraZeneca vaccines it was not using to other countries once they have been tested.

Millions of doses of AstraZeneca's vaccine manufactured at a US plant that had a contamination issue that were previously shipped to Mexico were deemed safe and approved by two regulators, Mexico's deputy health minister said last month.

Study: Virus antibodies last 8 months after infection

Antibodies remained in the blood for at least eight months after they were infected, Italian researchers have said.

They were present "regardless of the severity of the illness, the age of the patients or the presence of other pathologies," according to a statement from the San Raffaele hospital in Milan.

The researchers, working with Italy's ISS national health institute, studied 162 patients with symptomatic who turned up at the emergency room during the country's first wave of infections last year.

Blood samples were taken in March and April and again at the end of November from those who survived.

Spain approves J&J vaccine for under 60s

Spain has approved the use of Johnson & Johnson vaccine for people under the age of 60, Spanish El Pais newspaper reported, citing regional government sources.

El Pais said those aged 50 to 59 would be the first to receive the jab, followed by those aged over 18 who belong to a "vulnerable" group.

Britain seeking constructive engagement on vaccine waivers

Britain is seeking constructive engagement with the United States and other World Trade Organization members on the issue of IP waivers for Covid-19 vaccines, a government spokesman said after pressure from charities to back US proposals.

US President Joe Biden last week threw his support behind waiving intellectual property rights for Covid-19 vaccines in a sharp reversal of the previous US position.

Britain has not joined the United States in its position, but has emphasised its own efforts to improve access to Covid-19 vaccines, and the spokesman suggested that an IP waiver alone would not be sufficient to help the situation.

"We are engaging with the US and other WTO members constructively on the TRIPS waiver issue, but we need to act now to expand production and distribution worldwide," the government spokesman said in an email to Reuters.

"Any negotiations in the WTO on a waiver will require unanimous support, which could take a significant amount of time. So while we will constructively engage in the IP discussions, we must continue to push ahead with action now including voluntary licensing agreements for vaccines."

Taiwan tightens restrictions after new domestic cases

Taiwan's government has tightened rules on public gatherings after reporting six new domestic Covid-19 cases with no clear source of infection, a rare rise on the island which has kept the pandemic well under control.

Taiwan largely closed its borders early on in the pandemic and has a robust contact tracing and quarantine system, meaning its low case numbers – 1,210 infections to date including 12 deaths – have allowed life to carry on more or less as normal.

Already dealing with an outbreak amongst pilots of Taiwan's largest carrier China Airlines and at a hotel where some of them stayed, Health Minister Chen Shih-chung told reporters they had confirmed six new cases with no clear source of infection.

Five of these are in the northeastern county of Yilan and one in New Taipei, which surrounds the capital Taipei. None have a recent history of overseas travel, Chen added.

Vietnam seeks mRNA tech transfer amid vaccine supply issues

Vietnam is seeking the transfer of mRNA technology to domestically manufacture Covid-19 vaccines, state media reported, as officials warned of supply issues until the end of the year.

MRNA vaccines, like the one developed jointly by BionTech and Pfizer, prompt the human body to make a protein that is part of the virus, triggering an immune response.

"Given the currently limited supply to Vietnam, especially as the Covid-19 situation is showing complicated developments, the health ministry has met with a World Health Organization representative to facilitate the negotiations on transferring of mRNA technology," the Vietnam News Agency reported.

Governments are looking to build up local vaccine production after manufacturing setbacks slowed rollouts in some countries.

Indian players get vaccines before England tour

India captain Virat Kohli and several of his teammates have received their first dose of Covid-19 vaccines before they leave for a tour of England next month.

India face New Zealand in the final of the inaugural World Test Championship at Southampton in June before playing a five-test series against England from August 4.

India's novel coronavirus cases rose by 329,942 on Tuesday, while deaths from the disease rose by 3,876. The country leads the world in the daily average number of new deaths reported, accounting for one in every three deaths reported worldwide each day, according to a Reuters tally.

Russia reports 8,115 new cases, 329 deaths

Russia has reported 8,115 new coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours, taking the national tally to 4,896,842.

The government coronavirus task force said 329 people had died in the last day, taking Russia's death toll to 113,976.

The federal statistics agency has kept a separate count and has said Russia recorded around 250,000 deaths related to Covid-19 between April 2020 and March 2021.

India accounts for 1 in every 3 Covid deaths worldwide – latest updates

India's coronavirus crisis has shown scant sign of easing, with a seven-day average of new cases at a record high and international health authorities warning the country's variant of the virus poses a global concern.

India's daily virus cases rose by 329,942, while deaths from the disease rose by 3,876, according to the health ministry. India's total coronavirus infections are now at 22.99 million, while total fatalities rose to 249,992.

India leads the world in the daily average number of new deaths reported, accounting for one in every three deaths reported worldwide each day, according to a Reuters tally.

The seven-day average of new cases is at a record high of 390,995.

The World Health Organization said the coronavirus variant first identified in the country last year was being classified as a variant of global concern, with some preliminary studies showing that it spreads more easily.

Japanese prefecture says deaths at home surge amid 4th wave

Eighteen people have died from the virus respiratory disease outside of hospitals in Japan's Osaka Prefecture, officials said, amid calls for tougher restrictions on movement to halt a fourth wave of infections ahead of the Olympics.

All but one of the deaths occurred since March 1 as highly infectious strains of the virus caused a spike in new cases, the prefecture reported late on Monday for the first time.

The rise in virus deaths at home is a sign of the stress Japan's hospital system is under as the country struggles to bring the latest surge in infections under control, with more than 96 percent of Osaka Prefecture's critical care beds occupied.

Philippines records first two cases of Indian variant

The Philippines has detected its first two cases of a virus variant first identified in India, its health ministry said.

The variant had been confirmed in two Filipino seafarers who returned in April from the United Arab Emirates and Oman, Alethea De Guzman, director of the ministry's epidemiology bureau, told a news conference.

Australia's Victoria on alert after first case in two months

Australia's Victoria state has reported a locally acquired Covid-19 case for the first time in more than two months, sending authorities searching for the source of the infection.

A man in his 30s, who recently returned from overseas and had completed his hotel quarantine in South Australia state, tested positive for the virus on Tuesday morning, authorities said.

The infected person started developing flu-like symptoms over the weekend after reaching Victoria last Tuesday, the health department said in a statement.

Venezuela's academy of medicine asks US to donate vaccines

Venezuela's main academy of medicine has asked the United States to add the South American nation to its international donor list for millions of doses of Covid-19 vaccines, despite a political freeze between the two countries.

Enrique Lopez-Loyo, president of the politically independent National Academy of Medicine, made the request to US Ambassador to Venezuela James Story at a meeting on May 2, the academy said in a statement on Monday.

"To control the pandemic in our country, we need to vaccinate around 70 percent of the adult population, nearly 15 million people, in as little time as possible," the academy said in the statement.

China reports 14 new cases

China has reported 14 new virus cases for May 10, up from 11 a day earlier, the national health authority said.

The National Health Commission, in a statement, said all of the new cases were imported infections originating from overseas. The number of new asymptomatic cases, which China does not classify as confirmed cases, rose to 25 from 18 cases a day earlier.

The total number of confirmed virus cases in Mainland China now stands at 90,783, while the death toll remained unchanged at 4,636.

Novavax delays vaccine authorisation request

US biotech firm Novavax ha said that it had delayed plans to seek authorisation for its Covid vaccine candidate, a setback for developing countries hoping the injection would soon be available.

The company now hopes to file for authorisation in the US and Europe in the third quarter of 2021, it said in a statement, sending shares tumbling 12 percent.

Novavax's vaccine is key to the Covax program, which was set up to try to ensure poor countries have equitable access to vaccines to combat the virus pandemic.

US authorises Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine for children 12 to 15

US regulators have authorised Pfizer and BioNTech's Covid-19 vaccine for use in children as young as 12, widening the country's inoculation programme as vaccination rates have slowed significantly.

The vaccine has been available under an emergency use authorisation to people as young as 16 in the United States. The vaccine makers said they had started the process for full approval for those ages last week.

The US Food and Drug Administration said it was amending the EUA to include the millions of children aged 12 to 15.

Brazil death toll tops 423,000 

Brazil has recorded 25,200 confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the past 24 hours and 889 fatalities from Covid-19, the Health Ministry said.

That raised the total number of confirmed cases in Latin America's largest country to 15,209,990 and the official death toll to 423,229 on Monday.

Mexico reports 104 more fatalities

Mexico's Health Ministry has reported 704 new confirmed coronavirus cases and 104 more deaths, bringing the total number of cases in the country to 2,366,496 and fatalities to 219,089.

Source: TRTWorld and agencies