Will Karnataka to reimpose Covid-19 curbs over AY.4.2 variants?

News Network
October 26, 2021

Bengaluru, Oct 26: Karnataka is mulling issuing fresh Covid-19 guidelines after the detection of AY.4.2 variants in Karnataka.

State Minister for Health and Family Welfare and Medical Education Sudhakar K will meet the Technical Advisory Committee on Tuesday (October 26) and consult CM Bommai on the same.

Around 20 samples of a variant of the SARS-CoV-2 called ‘AY.4.2’ have been identified from India, with the earliest sample having been collected in May this year.

AY.4.2 is a sub-lineage of the Delta variant of the Covid-causing SARS-CoV-2 virus. Delta continues to be the most dominant variant circulating in India. 

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News Network
December 1,2021

Riyadh, Dec 1: Saudi Arabia confirmed its first case of the Omicron COVID-19 variant, the Saudi Press Agency reported on Wednesday quoting a Health Ministry source.

The case was a Saudi national who has arrived from a North African country, the ministry said without giving further details.

“With reference to what has already been announced on the emergence of a new variant of the coronavirus (COVID-19) in some countries, and detecting movement of those infected to other countries, a source at the Ministry of Health said that a case of the Omicron variant was detected in Saudi Arabia in a citizen arriving back from a North African country,” SPA said.

It said authorities had isolated the person and people who were in contact with them.

“An epidemiological investigation has started and the case was sent to quarantine, where accredited health procedures were followed,” the ministry source said.

The ministry urged people to complete their vaccination and ordered travelers to respect self-isolation and testing rules.

The World Health Organization (WHO) warned on Monday that the heavily mutated Omicron coronavirus variant was likely to spread internationally and poses a very high risk of infection surges that could have "severe consequences" in some places.

Omicron was first reported on Nov. 24 in southern Africa, where infections have risen steeply. It has since spread to more than a dozen countries, many of which have imposed travel restrictions to try to seal themselves off.

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News Network
November 23,2021

Riyadh, Nov 23: The Arab coalition said on Tuesday that it had carried out airstrikes in Yemen’s capital.

The coalition cautioned civilians in Sanaa from approaching or gathering near the targeted locations in the Dhahban neighborhood of the city.

The strikes hit sites storing ballistic missiles, said the coalition, accusing the Iran-backed Houthi militia of endangering Yemeni civilians by using them as human shields.

Residents told Reuters the strikes targeted two military sites.

The coalition said on Monday that the Houthi militia in Yemen have turned Sanaa airport into a military base for experiments and cross-border attacks.

Saudi Arabia claims that it is targeted by the militia nearly daily using explosive drones, which are often easily destroyed by the Kingdom’s air defenses.

Houthi attempts to target civilians has been labeled as war crimes by the Kingdom.

The Arab coalition has been supporting the Yemeni government regain full control of the country after the Houthis seized the capital, Sanaa, in 2014. 

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News Network
November 30,2021

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said on Monday everyone aged 18 years and older should get a booster shot, as it looks to tackle a new and highly infectious strain of the coronavirus that is quickly spreading across the globe.

The update comes after President Joe Biden on Monday called for wider vaccination to curb the spread of the Omicron coronavirus variant, which was first detected in southern Africa.

The US health regulators last week expanded the eligibility for booster shots of Covid-19 vaccines to all adults aged 18 and older either six months after their initial Pfizer or Moderna vaccine doses or two months after their Johnson & Johnson shot.

The CDC had, however, stopped short of saying all adults aged 18 to 49 should get the additional shots.

The agency is taking a more cautious stance as Omicron's emergence further emphasises the importance of vaccination and boosters, CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said in a statement on Monday.

Amid the renewed emphasis, Pfizer and partner BioNTech are expected to ask the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the coming days to authorise their booster shots for those aged 16 and 17 years, the Washington Post reported on Monday, citing sources.

Separately, the Wall Street Journal reported that the FDA could approve booster doses for 16- and 17-year-olds as soon as next week.

Pfizer, BioNTech and the FDA did not respond to Reuters' requests for comment.

Omicron, which the World Health Organization said carried a very high risk for fueling infection surges, has now been confirmed in several countries including Germany, Hong Kong, South Africa and Canada.

Scientists in the United States and around the world are urgently examining vaccine effectiveness related to this variant, the CDC said.

The agency also said the 47 million adults who are not yet vaccinated are encouraged to get vaccinated as soon as possible.

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