Global coronavirus pandemic has infected more than 51 million people and killed over 1.2 million. Here are the updates for November 11:

A medic of the regional hospital receives Russia's Sputnik V vaccine shot against the coronavirus disease in Tver, Russia October 12, 2020.
A medic of the regional hospital receives Russia's Sputnik V vaccine shot against the coronavirus disease in Tver, Russia October 12, 2020. (Reuters)

November 11, 2020

Sputnik V virus vaccine 92 percent effective – Russia

Russia's Sputnik V vaccine is 92 percent effective at protecting people from Covid-19 according to interim trial results, the country's sovereign wealth fund has said, as Moscow rushes to keep pace with Western drugmakers in the race for a shot.

Russia's results are only the second from a late-stage human trial, following on swiftly from data released on Monday by Pfizer Inc and BioNTech, which said their shot was also more than 90 perfect effective.

While experts said the Russian data was encouraging and reinforced the idea the pandemic could be halted by vaccines, they warned that the results were only based on a small number of trial volunteers who had contracted Covid-19.

The analysis was conducted after 20 participants developed the virus and examined how many had received the vaccine versus placebo. 

That is significantly lower than the 94 infections in the trial of the vaccine being developed by Pfizer and BioNTech.

Italy surpasses one million Covid-19 mark

Italy, one of the European countries hit hardest by Covid-19, has surpassed the one-million infections mark, leap-frogging Mexico to become one of the top 10 worst-affected countries globally, according to a Reuters tally.

The Italian Health Ministry said the country had registered 32,961 new cases over the past 24 hours, taking its total tally since the contagion first struck in February to 1.028 million.

The Reuters tally showed that the top 10 countries accounted for over two-thirds of all the global coronavirus cases. 

The United States leads the list, which includes four other European countries besides Italy - Russia, France, Spain, and Britain.

UK's death toll tops 50,000

Britain has reported 595 new deaths of people within 28 days of a positive Covid-19, the highest daily figure since May, government figures showed.

The daily death toll is the highest since 614 deaths were reported on May 12.

There were 22,950 people who tested positive for Covid-19 in the latest daily figures, up from 20,412 on Tuesday. 

Britain's death toll now stands at 50,365, the highest in Europe.

Turkey: Number of patients tops 400,000

The number of coronavirus patients in Turkey has climbed to over 400,000, according to figures released by the Health Ministry.

Registering 2,693 more patients, the official data raised the total to 402,053, including 3,095 in critical condition.

A total of 86 more virus-related fatalities were reported in the country over the past 24 hours, raising the overall count to 11,145.

Recoveries increased by 2,112 during the same period to reach 344,613.

As many as 145,989 more tests were carried out across the country, bringing the total to nearly 15.57 million.

Turkey said it's banning smoking in town squares, avenues, bus stops, and crowded areas as part of Covid-19 control measures.

Spain death toll passes 40,000

Spain's death toll has surged over 40,000 with infections passing the 1.4 million mark, while the rate of new cases continued to grow, Health Ministry data has shown. 

With 349 people dying in the past 24 hours, the death toll now stands at 40,105 in Spain, which has the fourth-highest death rate within the European Union after the United Kingdom, France, and Italy.

Spain passed the grim landmark a day after logging 411 deaths, the highest daily death toll of the second wave. 

Over the past 24 hours, health authorities also registered more than 19,000 new cases, bringing the overall number of people infected to 1,417,709, the second-highest figure within the EU after France.

Texas becomes first US state to surpass one million cases

Texas has become the first US state with more than 1 million confirmed Covid-19 cases as the nation continues to face a surge of infections, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

The nation's second-most populous state has recorded 1,010,364 coronavirus cases with 19,337 deaths since the pandemic began in early March.

Texas had recently surpassed California, the most populous state, in recording the highest number of positive coronavirus tests. 

The true number of infections is likely higher because many people haven’t been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected and not feel sick.

China’s Rhodiola set to sell. test Russia’s Sputnik V

China's Tibet Rhodiola Pharmaceutical Holding has announced a deal to manufacture, sell and test Russia's Covid-19 vaccine in China, hours after interim results showed it was 92 percent effective at protecting people from the disease.

Rhodiola said it plans to conduct early and mid-stage trials of the Russian vaccine in China and final-stage trials overseas, although the trials are yet to be approved by regulators.

Rhodiola, currently unable to produce the Russian vaccine, said it would outsource early development and manufacturing work, and would also consider building production lines at its subsidiary.

The deal requires Rhodiola's unit to supply the Russian firm with enough vaccine doses to inoculate at least 20 million people in 2021.

EU could see first Covid-19 jabs in early 2021

The first vaccinations in the European Union against Covid-19 could happen in the first three months of 2021 under an optimistic scenario, the EU health agency chief has said.

"I think optimistically first quarter next year, but I can't be more precise," Andrea Ammon, the director of the Stockholm-based European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), said in an interview.

A European source told AFP news agency on Tuesday that a vaccine could be authorised for use in the EU in "early 2021", after the announcement that US pharmaceutical group Pfizer and Germany's BioNTech's vaccine had shown 90 percent effectiveness in phase three trials.

Brazil allows trials of Chinese vaccine to resume

Brazil's national health regulator allowed clinical trials of a Chinese-developed Covid-19 vaccine to resume, two days after suspending them in what critics called a decision tainted by politics.

The regulatory agency, Anvisa, said it had now received more details on the nature of the "adverse incident" that led it to halt trials of the CoronaVac vaccine, and had "sufficient information to allow vaccination to resume."

Far-right President Jair Bolsonaro, who has criticised the vaccine "from that other country," had claimed the suspension as a victory. However, public health officials said the "adverse incident" that led to the suspension – a volunteer recipient's death, which police are investigating as a suicide – had no connection with the vaccine.

Hungary, Sweden coaches test positive

Hungary national team coach Marco Rossi has tested positive for Covid-19, while the coach of Sweden's men's national team Janne Andersson also tested positive.

Hungary national team coach Marco Rossi tested positive for Covid-19, while the coach of Sweden's men's national football team Janne Andersson has also tested positive on Wednesday.

Rossi was separated from the team in quarantine a day before its crucial Euro 2020 playoff match against Iceland.

Sweden coach Janne Andersson will miss upcoming Nations League matches against Croatia and France.

Protests as Ukraine eyes tighter virus restrictions

Nearly 2,000 people have protested near the government headquarters against possible weekend restrictions that officials say may come into force in Ukraine to slow down the spread of coronavirus.

In a bid to halt the spread of the virus, the ex-Soviet country is considering whether to shutter non-essential businesses on weekends, with only grocery stores and pharmacies allowed to remain open.

The new restrictions could come into force as early as Wednesday, officials said.

Demonstrators, mostly owners, and employees of restaurants and movie cinemas asked the government to let them continue to stay open on weekends.

Some were holding placards that said "Let me work!" and "no work – no taxes." 

Workers of restaurant businesses bang on pans in a sign of protest against the newly introduced coronavirus weekend quarantine in front of the Cabinet in Kyiv, Ukraine, Wednesday, Nov. 11, 2020. Ukraine's Cabinet has ruled to introduce a weekend quarantine, allowing to work only food stores, pharmacies, public transport and gas stations in an attempt to fight against raising Covid-19 cases in Ukraine.
Workers of restaurant businesses bang on pans in a sign of protest against the newly introduced coronavirus weekend quarantine in front of the Cabinet in Kyiv, Ukraine, Wednesday, Nov. 11, 2020. Ukraine's Cabinet has ruled to introduce a weekend quarantine, allowing to work only food stores, pharmacies, public transport and gas stations in an attempt to fight against raising Covid-19 cases in Ukraine. (AP)

US hits record hospitalisations amid virus surge

The US has hit a record number of coronavirus hospitalisations and surpassed 1 million new confirmed cases in just the first 10 days of November amid a nationwide surge of infections that shows no signs of slowing.

There are now 61,964 people hospitalised, according to the Covid Tracking Project.

The new wave appears bigger and more widespread than the surges that happened in the spring and summer and threatens to be worse. But experts say there are also reasons to think the nation is better able to deal with the virus this time around.

Newly confirmed infections in the US were running at all-time highs of well over 100,000 per day, pushing the total to more than 10 million and eclipsing 1 million since Halloween. 

Philippines reports 1,672 new cases, 49 more deaths

The Philippine health ministry has recorded 1,672 new coronavirus infections and 49additional deaths.

In a bulletin, the ministry said total confirmed cases have increased to 401,416 while deaths have reached 7,710.

Russia reports record high of 432 deaths, 19,851 cases

Russia has reported a record high of432 new deaths related to the novel coronavirus, taking the official death toll to 31,593.

Authorities also reported 19,851 new coronavirus infections in the last 24 hours, including 4,477 in the capital Moscow, bringing the national tally to 1,836,960.

Germany's coronavirus cases rise by 18,487 to 705,687

The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Germany has increased by 18,487 to 705,687, data from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) for infectious diseases showed.

The reported death toll rose by 261 to 11,767, the tally showed.

Czech Republic reports 9,016 new cases, 249 deaths

The Czech Republic has reported 9,016 new virus cases, a drop of 3,072 from a week earlier, Health Ministry data showed.

The country of 10.7 million has recorded a total of 429,880 cases after showing one of Europe's highest infection rates for several weeks.

The ministry also reported 249 new deaths, including 109 on Tuesday and adding in revisions to previous days. Overall, 5,323 people have died after testing positive for the virus. 

Ukraine to impose weekend lockdown

Ukraine's government is going to strengthen measures to prevent the fast spread of coronavirus infection by introducing a lockdown at weekends, said Prime Minister Denys Shmygal.

He said the decision could be approved in a government meeting on Wednesday.

"After consulting with business and experts, the government has chosen a model of quarantine measures that will ensure the functioning of the economy and prevent overloading of the medical system," the government said in a statement.

Mongolia records first local virus transmission

Mongolia has recorded its first domestic virus transmission following hundreds of imported cases, the country's health minister said during a briefing.

Minister Munkhsaikhan Togtmol said a woman in Ulaanbaatar had been infected by her husband, a truck driver delivering goods from Russia who tested positive after 21 days in quarantine.

Another 24 people in close contact with the couple have been put in isolation.

Cuba reopens Havana airport after 8-month virus closure

Havana's airport will resume commercial flights from Sunday, nearly eight months after authorities shut Cuba's main international gateway to shield the island nation from the coronavirus pandemic.

This year's global public health crisis has dealt a tough blow to the communist country's sclerotic economy, which was already struggling with fresh US sanctions and declining tourism revenues.

Foreign arrivals will be subject to a temperature check and PCR diagnostic test on arrival and will not be allowed to move freely until the results of the test around 24 hours later, according to a report on the official news portal Cubadebate.

Travellers will also be required to take a second PCR test five days later and pay an unspecified "health tax" to cover the cost of the test protocols, the report said.

US records new high of over 200,000 cases in 24 hours

US far exceeded its previous daily record of new cases, adding 201,961 cases in 24 hours, according to the tally compiled by Johns Hopkins University.

The high number, partly due to data delayed over the weekend, took total cases in the US to 10,238,243, with a total of 239,588 deaths, as of 8:30 pm (0130 GMT).

In the 24-hour-period, 1,535 deaths from Covid-19 were registered, a record in recent months as the US struggles to contain the spread of the pandemic.

Mexico reports almost 6,000 new cases

Mexico's health ministry on Tuesday reported 5,746 more cases and 617 more deaths, bringing the official toll to 978,531 cases and 95,842 deaths.

Health officials have said the real number of infections and deaths is likely significantly higher.

Mainland China reports 17 new cases

Mainland China reported 17 new cases on November 10, down from 22 reported a day earlier, the country's health authority said on Wednesday.

The National Health Commission said one of the new cases was a local infection reported in Anhui, the first such infection in the eastern Chinese province since February 27. 

The other 16 cases were imported infections originating from overseas, it said.

The commission also said the number of new asymptomatic cases fell to 15 from 25 reported a day earlier. 

China does not classify symptomless patients as confirmed cases.

The total number of confirmed cases reported in mainland China now stands at 86,284, while the death toll remains unchanged at 4,634

Brazil passes 5.7 million cases

Brazil reported 25,012 additional confirmed cases in the past 24 hours, and 201 deaths, the Health Ministry said on Tuesday.

The South American country has registered 5,700,044 cases since the pandemic began, while the official death toll has risen to 162,829, according to ministry data. 

It is the world's second most fatal outbreak after the United States

Ireland to ease quarantine in hotspots from end of November

Ireland will ease travel curbs for arrivals from "red" regions of Britain and the European Union hardest hit by the pandemic from November 29 by cutting their quarantine period to as little as five days from 14 currently if they test negatively for the virus.

Ireland began implementing the EU's "traffic light" system for non-essential EU travellers this week, ending some of the bloc's tightest controls that were strongly opposed by its two main airlines, Ryanair and Aer Lingus.

People arriving from "green" regions with fewer than 25 infections per 100,000 people in the last 14 days do not need to restrict their movements, neither do those travelling from "orange" areas if they produce a negative test taken in the previous three days.

"Red" regions - those with infection rates of 50 or more per 100,000 and positive tests of 4 percent - must restrict their movement for a minimum of five days before they can take a test that, if returned negative, ends their quarantine, the government said.

Only Greenland is now categorised as a low-risk green region, according to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), with Finland, Norway and parts of Greece deemed to be orange.

Ireland's 14-day incidence of 152 cases per 100,000 is the fifth lowest of the 31 countries monitored by the ECDC, having fallen 51% compared to the previous two weeks after Ireland was one of the first EU countries to reimpose lockdown measures. 

Hospitalisations soar in California as pandemic surges

The number of patients hospitalised with the virus in California has risen by 32 percent over the past two weeks, and intensive care admissions have spiked by 30 percent as the pandemic surges across the US, the state's Health and Human Services secretary said on Tuesday.

Dr Mark Ghaly said three counties that are home to about 5.5 million people - San Diego, Sacramento and Stanislaus - must reverse their reopening plans and go back to the most restrictive category of regulations aimed at slowing the spread of the virus.

More counties will likely be required to roll back reopening in coming weeks, he said.

In the most restrictive tier of regulation, indoor dining in restaurants is not allowed. Gyms and religious institutions are also not allowed to hold indoor activities.

"We anticipate if things stay the way they are... over half of California counties will have moved into a more restrictive tier" by next week, Ghaly said.

Canada PM scolds provinces to do more to fight virus

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Tuesday urged premiers of the country's 10 provinces to "do the right thing" and take stricter measures to fight a rapidly spreading second wave of the coronavirus.

As Trudeau spoke, the central province of Manitoba announced a major shutdown beginning on Thursday. All social gatherings will be forbidden, restaurants closed except for takeout meals, and recreational facilities shut. Even supermarkets and pharmacies will operate only at 25 percent capacity.

Quebec – the province that has recorded the most cases – will keep restrictions on the hardest-hit areas in place for at least another two weeks, Premier Francois Legault said on Tuesday. New cases are rising everywhere except for the Atlantic coast provinces, which have closed their borders even to most other Canadian visitors. But many provinces have resisted imposing another round of lockdowns, fearing the potential economic damage.

Virus kills 15,000 minks in US

More than 15,000 mink in the US have died of the virus since August, and authorities are keeping about a dozen farms under quarantine while they investigate the cases, state agriculture officials said.

The US states of Utah, Wisconsin and Michigan – where the coronavirus has killed mink – said they do not plan to cull animals and are monitoring the situation in Denmark.

"We believe that quarantining affected mink farms in addition to implementing stringent biosecurity measures will succeed in controlling SARS-CoV-2 at these locations," the US Department of Agriculture told Reuters on Tuesday.

The USDA said it is working with the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, state officials and the mink industry to test and monitor infected farms.

The US has 359,850 mink bred to produce babies, known as kits, and produced 2.7 million pelts last year. Wisconsin is the largest mink-producing state, followed by Utah.

Source: TRTWorld and agencies