World Coronavirus Dispatch: Czech cops clash with protesters opposing curbs

The federal government is shipping more than 100 million of the newest rapid tests to states for use in public schools
In US, millions are tested being daily, but results aren’t reported: All US testing sites are legally required to report their results, positive and negative, to public health agencies. But state health officials say many rapid tests are going unreported, which means some new Covid-19 infections may not be counted. And the situation could get worse, experts say. The federal government is shipping more than 100 million of the newest rapid tests to states for use in public schools, assisted living centres and other new testing sites. Read more here

Total Confirmed Cases: 39,681,253

Change Over Yesterday: 341,291

Total Deaths: 1,109,992

Total Recovered: 27,293,615

Nations hit with most cases: US (8,106,752), India (7,494,551), Brazil (5,224,362), Russia (1,376,020) and Argentina (979,119)

Czech Police clash with protesters opposing covid-19 curbs: Hundreds of protesters clashed with riot police in Prague in a protest against social distancing rules and government measures such as wearing face-masks to the coronavirus. The police used tear gas, water cannon and an armored personnel carrier to disperse the crowd of some 2,000 protesters, which assembled at the city’s Old Town Square. Read more here

Healthcare workers, high-risk people will get priority for Covid-19 vaccine in New York: According to the five-phase preliminary plan for New York’s vaccine administration program, some details of which governor Andrew Cuomo announced at a news briefing, healthcare workers in patient-care settings, long-term care facility workers and some long-term care residents would be among the first to receive a vaccine. In the second phase, first responders, school staff, other public-facing frontline workers and people whose health conditions put them at extreme risk would get priority for the vaccine. Read more here

China's central bank head says economy to expand about 2% this year: China will see its economy expand by about 2 per cent this year as it has got the coronavirus pandemic under control, central bank governor Yi Gang said on Sunday, signalling confidence about the prospects of a domestic demand-driven recovery. His remark comes ahead of Monday’s closely watched GDP data. Read more here

UK businesses seek property rate cut: An “unprecedented” number of companies are attempting to reduce their business rates bills as the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on high streets and offices looks set to last far longer than first anticipated. According to Colliers International, the property consultancy, some 170,000 businesses have taken the first step towards appealing against their rates since the pandemic began in the UK in March. That is more than the total number in the three previous years, during which 159,000 queried their rates. Read more here

1,000 current and former employees decry politicisation of the US's CDC: More than 1,000 current and former epidemic intelligence officers — the “disease detectives” of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — have signed an open letter decrying the politicisation of the agency and calling for it to be restored to its “indispensable role” in fighting the coronavirus pandemic. The letter has been gathering signatures since May, when it was first posted on Medium, but only recently surpassed the 1,000 mark, organisers said. Read more here


Rent or Buy? Hunters explain their real estate moves during Covid

There’s been a burst of home buying across the US, especially in suburbs outside cities where people were cooped up during the spring Covid-19 lockdown. In August, contracts to buy single-family houses in Greenwich, Connecticut, nearly tripled from a year earlier. Contracts were up 57% in nearby Westchester County. It’s not just the US, In the UK, July home sales were the highest in more than a decade. A new report from UBS Group AG found that hot housing markets in cities including Munich, Frankfurt, Toronto and Hong Kong are vulnerable and at risk of a “sharp correction.” Ilyce Glink, author of “100 Questions Every First Time Home Buyer Should Ask” lists out questions first-time buyers should ask themselves before making the purchase. Read here

How the Pandemic is affecting what babies and toddlers learn

Many parents are keeping their little ones away from playgrounds, playgroups and preschool preparatory programs. As a result, the social and learning opportunities for the youngest children have been curtailed, just like everyone else’s. Those who study and work with the youngest children are concerned about the effects on learning and school readiness. “There is going to be a bit of a collective lag in academic skills and in those executive-function skills that allow a child to navigate a classroom more easily,” the developmental psychologist Aliza W. Pressman predicted. Without group settings, “we are missing a lot of observations, so there is going to be a whole raft of problems,” said Patricia K. Kuhl, who co-directs the Institute for Brain and Learning Sciences at the University of Washington in Seattle. That’s partly because group settings like day care, classrooms and even playgrounds are often where adults notice, sometimes by comparing children with their peers, that little ones have sensory, motor, cognitive and learning problems that can benefit from early interventions. Read more here

Strong demand in China for vaccine that has not completed clinical trials: Hundreds of people in Yiwu, a city in Eastern China, stood in line for a coronavirus vaccine after the government opened up bookings to the general public on Sunday. The local government had said on Friday it would allow people to be vaccinated on an “emergency use” basis, a day after the neighboring city of Jiaxing announced the same. The vaccine in Yiwu was made by a private company, Sinovac Biotech. Sinovac’s vaccine is in phase-3, the last stage of clinical trials before approval. Scientists have warned that taking a vaccine before the completion of clinical trials carries health risks. On Sunday, The Beijing News, a state-run newspaper, cited a person familiar with the Yiwu health department as saying that the supply of vaccines had stopped and that people should not travel to the city to be vaccinated. But a representative from Yiwu’s center for disease control and prevention told The New York Times that local hospitals were still providing coronavirus vaccinations. He declined to confirm whether the sale had been suspended or provide more details. Read more here

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