New infection record in Lebanon
Lebanon has recorded a new infection high, as the health ministry said a total of 158 new cases had been confirmed in the last 24 hours.
A Lebanese waste management company is quarantining 133 Syrian workers who tested positive for the coronavirus, the company manager said on Sunday.
Lebanon has recorded more than 2,000 infections and 36 deaths from the coronavirus since February.
“The number will remain high this week,” health minister Hamad Hassan said.
“To reassure people, the source is known,” he added in comments to broadcaster LBC.
Most of the new cases were at what he described as “a big cleaning company”, an apparent reference to waste management firm RAMCO, which collects garbage across Lebanon.
RAMCO said it was moving infected workers to quarantine.
“We are separating those who are infected from those who aren’t … we are waiting for more results,” RAMCO manager Walid BouSaad told Reuters.
Hassan said 800 workers from the company in question needed testing, along with another 1,000 workers from two other companies with whom they were connected.
The United Kingdom’s death toll from confirmed cases of Covid-19 rose to 44,819, up 21 on the previous day, the government said on Sunday.
Bereaved relatives will start giving evidence in the so far only independent UK inquiry into the government’s handling of the coronavirus crisis on Monday, amid growing calls for a full independent investigation.
Families of those who have died will give their submissions in writing, via video call, or will arrange to do so in person to the new all-party parliamentary group for coronavirus, led by a cross-party group of MPs, my colleague Kate Proctor reports.
Coronavirus cases in the US state of Arizona rose by 2,537 to 122,467 in total on Sunday, marking the first increase below 3,000 new cases in over a week.
Covid-19 hospitalisations in Arizona have fallen to 3,432 as of Saturday, down from Friday’s record high of 3,485, according to the state health department.
But 89% of adult intensive care unit (ICU) beds are still in use in the state as of Saturday, unchanged from the previous day.
Governor Doug Ducey urged citizens on Twitter to keep respecting social distancing rules.
“Wear a mask. Stay physically distant. And remember you are safer at home,” he wrote.
The Naval Forces Central in Lapu-Lapu City in the Philippines is currently under lockdown after 77 of its personnel were confirmed to have caught the coronavirus disease, CNN Philippines reports.
The lockdown was implemented on 4 July and will be in effect until 14 July, according to the acting director of the naval public affairs office, Maria Christina Roxas.
Roxas said the 77 were among the 498 personnel who were tested for the virus through swab testing. She also noted that the majority of those infected were frontliners who were deployed in different quarantine checkpoints.
“The Philippine Navy through Naval Forces Central ensures that the camp will strictly implement the safety and health protocol within the camp,” she said.
Lapu-Lapu City, with a population of about half a million people, is in the Central Visayas region, which has the second highest number of Covid-19 cases nationwide, next to Metro Manila.
As of 12 July, the city logged 1,251 confirmed cases of the disease, with 309 recoveries and 31 deaths, based on data from the department of health regional office.
Central Visayas currently has 12,114 confirmed infections, around 22 percent of the national case count, which stands at over 54,000 as of 11 July in the country of more than 100 million people.
President Rodrigo Duterte imposed the world’s longest coronavirus lockdown on 15 March.
Biggest single-day rise in infections in Florida
The US state of Florida has registered another grim record, and reports that new infections have risen by 15,300 in the 24 hours to Sunday to a total of 269,811.
This is the biggest daily increase in recorded coronavirus cases in the Sunshine State since the beginning of the pandemic, according to the state health department.
If Florida were a country, it would rank fourth in the world for the most new cases a day behind the United States, Brazil and India.
Its daily increases have already surpassed the highest daily tally reported by any European country during the height of the pandemic there, Reuters reports.
Florida has also broken New York State’s record of 12,847 new cases on 10 April when it was the epicenter of the US outbreak.
To combat the outbreak, Republican governor Ron DeSantis has ordered bars to close but has resisted calls for a statewide mandate to wear masks in public.
As we reported yesterday, DeSantis is pushing for the reopening of schools despite surging infections.
Popular with both American and international tourists, Florida is home to beach resorts and theme parks including Disney World, which reopened on Saturday.
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I’m going to be handing the blog over to my colleague Jedidajah, who’ll be taking over the blog as I try to catch the last of the lovely sun we’re having in London today.
Thank you all for reading alone, especially to those who sent in tips and pointers. I hope you’re all safe and well and enjoy the rest of your day.
The current number of people admitted to hospital while suffering from coronavirus in Florida is currently at 7,524, up by 285 in the past 24 hours.
Florida has been one of the worst-hit parts of the US, which has the highest number of cases and death toll from the virus of any country in the world.
Contrary to hints made by prime minister Boris Johnson on Friday, cabinet minister Michael Gove said this morning that face masks should not be made mandatory in England.
Read the full story from my colleague Kate Proctor here:
US pushes ahead with school reopening despite surge in cases
US education secretary Betsy DeVos has continued the administration’s push to reopen the country’s schools, albeit without outlining how this could be done safely.
“We know that children get the virus at a far lower rate than any other part of the population. There is nothing in the data that would suggest that kids being back in school is dangerous to them,” DeVos told CNN’s “State of the Union.”
She did not offer a blueprint for reopening, or share details on how her department would support states and schools to reopen safely. DeVos also downplayed the risk that children might bring home the virus and pass it on to vulnerable family members.
Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was immediately critical of the comments, saying that the Trump administration’s approach to schools reopening was dangerous.
“What we heard from the secretary was malfeasance and dereliction of duty,” Pelosi said on CNN. “Going back to school presents the biggest risk for the spread of the coronavirus. If there are CDC guidelines, they should be requirements. They should be mandates, not requirements.”
According to Reuters, coronavirus infections are rising in about 40 states. Nationally, the US has broken global records by registering about 60,000 new cases a day for the last four days in a row.
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Canada’s attempts to fast-track foreign-trained doctors to meet the demand created by coronavirus has resulted in just two dozen licenses approved in Ontario and none in British Columbia, according to medical colleges in both provinces.
British Columbia had created a new class of license that would allow overseas-trained doctors to practice while being supervised by a fully licensed doctor, while Ontario established a short-term license program that would allow hospitals to hire internationally trained doctors on short notice.
Immigrant doctors and their advocates say the poor update comes from logistical and communications failings, alleging that the requirements for the new license categories didn’t help more physicians to apply, and were poorly communicated to applicants and hospitals.
Canada’s understaffed healthcare system has long been an electoral talking point. Last year, a report from the Canadian Institute of Health Information found that Canada had 241 physicians per 100,000 people, more than 100 less than the OECD average.
15 further deaths in England
A further 15 people who tested positive for coronavirus have died in hospital in England.
This brings the total number of reported deaths in hospitals in England to 29,066, NHS England said.
Patients were aged between 72 and 96 years old, and one patient, aged 96, had no known underlying health conditions.
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You can read more on the Herefordshire farm coronavirus outbreak from my colleague Matthew Weaver below.
More than 70 farm workers have tested positive for the virus, and all 200 workers are now in isolation there.
There have also been no new coronavirus deaths registered in Scotland in the last 24 hours, while 19 new cases have been reported, 12 more than the previous day.
No new coronavirus deaths have been reported in Wales in the last 24 hours, for the third time in a week.
The total number of fatalities in Wales remains 1,541.
According to Public Health Wales (PHW) 25 new cases have been reported, meaning 17,020 people have tested positive for Covid-19.
These include nine new cases reported by non-NHS laboratories.
A total of 215,710 tests have been carried out in PHW labs – some people having been tested more than once.
Over the last seven days there have been 59 Covid-19 cases confirmed by PHW labs. The total of cases from non-NHS laboratories is now 1,058 to add to the 15,962 cases confirmed by PHW.
Lebanon has recorded more than 100 new coronavirus infections since yesterday, its highest daily increase yet.
Around 75% of the cases were among workers of a cleaning company, and were asymptomatic, and non-Lebanese, according to health minister Hamad Hassan.
To reassure people, the source is known,” health minister Hamad Hassan told broadcaster LB. Hassan said 800 workers from the cleaning company needed to be tested, alongside 1,000 workers from two other companies with whom they were connected.
“The number will remain high this week,” he said.
Lebanon has recorded more than 2,000 cases of coronavirus and 36 deaths since February.