Several countries, including the United States, have formed a partnership to bring the number of available vaccines in Asia to one billion.
The number of people infected with the coronavirus worldwide has approached 120 million, the Johns Hopkins University Resource Center said on Sunday. The leader in the number of infected people is the United States – 29.4 million people. They are followed by Brazil and India – 11.4 million and 11.3 million, respectively.
Apparently, the United States is gradually accumulating coronavirus vaccines stocks, planning to receive almost twice as many doses as the population size.
The United States has committed to funding several vaccination initiatives and, in particular, to the $ 2 billion Covax international program aimed at universal vaccine availability.
The United States, Australia, India, and Japan also recently agreed to form a partnership to bring the number of available vaccines in Asia to 1 billion by the end of 2022. The Indian Foreign Minister announced this at a press conference in Delhi after a virtual meeting with US President Joe Biden and other countries’ leaders.
The initiative aims to reduce the global vaccine shortage and counter China’s growing diplomatic campaign to distribute vaccines in Southeast Asia and worldwide.
Competition in the global distribution of vaccines intensified on Saturday when China announced that it would simplify the entry process for foreigners wishing to visit mainland China from Hong Kong if they were vaccinated with Chinese-made vaccines.
By requiring less paperwork, China hopes to increase the appeal of its vaccines, which most Western countries have not yet approved. Also, China has not yet approved the production or distribution of foreign-made vaccines within the country.
Meanwhile, in Italy, the Special Commissioner for Coronavirus said on Saturday that the country plans to vaccinate at least 80 percent of the population by September. Francesco Paolo Figliuolo revealed a plan to increase the volume of vaccinations to 500 thousand doses per day.
About 2 million Italians, or about 4 percent of the population, have received two doses of the vaccine. At the same time, less than 51 million people are eligible for vaccination. Italy was among the countries most affected by the coronavirus: according to Johns Hopkins University, 3.2 million cases were registered in the country, more than 101 thousand people died.
Most Italians will face new restrictions on Monday as the government moves to halt the rise in the disease. We are talking about the closure of schools and shops of non-primary importance in most parts of the country, including Rome and Milan.
The good news came from Corvo, the smallest of the Azores: 322 of its 400 inhabitants were vaccinated about COVID-19. Thanks to this, collective immunity is likely to be developed by the end of March.
For collective immunity to occur, 50 to 70 percent of the population must be immune to infection. For Corvo, this figure will be almost 85 percent for residents over the age of 16.