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What you need to know about the coronavirus right now

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India's Covid-19 deaths near 200,000

Vital medical supplies poured into India on Tuesday as hospitals short of oxygen and beds turned away coronavirus patients, while a surge in infections pushed the death toll towards 200,000.

Supplies from Britain, including 100 ventilators and 95 oxygen concentrators, arrived in Delhi, said Reuters partner ANI, while France is sending oxygen generators capable of providing 250 patients with a year's supply of the gas, its embassy said.

Even China, locked in a year-long military standoff with India on their disputed Himalayan border, said it was trying to get medical supplies to its neighbour.

Turkey announces "full lockdown"
Turks will be required to stay mostly at home under a nationwide "full lockdown" starting on Thursday and lasting until May 17 to curb a surge in infections and deaths, President Tayyip Erdogan announced on Monday.

Turkey logged 37,312 new infections and 353 deaths in the last 24 hours, health ministry data showed, sharply down from mid-April but still the world's fourth highest number of cases and the worst on a per-capita basis among major nations.

Erdogan said all intercity travel would require official approval, all schools would shut and move lessons online, and a strict capacity limit would be imposed for users of public transport.

Brazil health regulator rejects Russia's Sputnik vaccine
The Brazilian health regulator Anvisa on Monday rejected importing the Russian-made Sputnik V Covid-19 vaccine requested by state governors battling a deadly second wave of the virus that is battering Latin America's largest nation.

Anvisa's five-strong board voted unanimously not to approve the Russian vaccine after technical staff had highlighted "inherent risks" and "serious" defects, citing a lack of information guaranteeing its safety, quality and effectiveness.

Brazil has registered 14.4 million confirmed cases of the virus and almost 400,000 deaths since the onset of the pandemic over a year ago.

Canada to send army, Red Cross to Ontario
Canada will send the armed forces and Red Cross to Ontario to help the country's most populous province as it struggles to cope with a surge in hospitalizations, the country's public safety minister said on Monday.

The federal government approved a request from Ontario which includes air lifting medical personnel from the Atlantic province of Newfoundland and Labrador to Toronto, the epicentre of Ontario's third wave, a spokesman from Public Safety Canada said.

Ontario reported 877 people in its intensive care units with Covid-19 on Monday. Provincial modelling showed the virus could see 1,500 people in the ICU by early May.

Hong Kong to reopen bars, nightclubs

Hong Kong will reopen bars and nightclubs from April 29 for people who have been vaccinated and use a government mobile phone application, the Asian financial hub's health secretary said on Tuesday.

Sophia Chan told a press briefing the measures extended to bathhouses and karaoke lounges and would enable the venues to stay open until 2.00 a.m. All staff and customers must have received at least one vaccine dose for the venue to be operational and they must operate at half capacity.

"We all hope life can return to normal but we need to allow some time for everyone to adapt to these new measures," Chan said.
(Reuters)

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