Health workers arrive at a slum to vaccinate residents as part of a door-to-door vaccination campaign in Chennai on Sunday. Photo by Drees Mohammed/EPA-EFE
Oct. 3 (UPI) -- India's current coronavirus situation is a small fraction of the record peaks several months ago: 4.4% of the deaths in June and 5.6% of the cases in May, as the weekly global toll decreased 10% and infections 9%.
In the past week, India's fatalities dropped 9% to 1,898, or 271 daily, and infections decreased 21% to 161,338, or 23,048 daily.
Those weekly levels are far lower than the daily records of 6,148 deaths in June and 414,188 cases in May.
On Sunday, India gained 244 deaths for a total of 448,917, which is third behind the United States with 719,840 and Brazil with 597,749, according to tracking by Worldometers.info. On Tuesday, the 179 deaths were the least since mid March.
Also, India reported 22,842 cases for a total of 33,813,903, second in the world behind the United States with 44,504,868 but ahead of Brazil with 21,459,117. On Tuesday, the 18,795 infections were the lowest since early March.
The world death toll was 4,814,865 and cases were 235,663,347 so far Sunday.
Like in other nations, India's numbers are down because of an aggressive vaccination program.
The nation, which is the prime manufacturer of vaccines in the world, has inoculated 47.7% with one dose and 27.6% are fully vaccinated.
Worldwide, vaccination doses grew by 210 million in one week to 6.33 billion with the world's population of 7.9 billion, according to tracking by Bloomberg.
India, with the second-largest population in the world at 1.4 billion, has administered 907.6 million doses, which is far behind China, the largest population at 1.5 billion, at 2.2 billion shots. The United States is third with 383.2 million doses.
But Dr. Naveet Wig, who heads the COVID Task Force in Deli, warned India must do better.
"We have to go far ahead of 100 cores and have to make everybody double vaccinated," she told ANI. "So this is our aim and we are moving ahead, but we have to move faster and ensure that everybody gets the second dose as well.
"And that is how we are going to win this war. It is not an easy war still, we cannot be overconfident, we have to be a little underconfident so that we don't lower our guard and take all precautions."
National capital Delhi has reopened religious places but a distance of 6 feet has to be maintained between the devotees inside the places of worship.
The state of Kerala in southern India with a population of 34.6 million accounted for 57% of the cases Sunday, 13,217.
On Saturday, the state of Kerala permitted cinema halls and indoor auditoriums to reopen, starting Oct. 235. The state government also allowed schools to reopen for certain classes levels on Nov. 1.
India accounts for 44.4% of Asia's 76,256,001 cases, which ranks first among the continents, and 39.8% of 1,127,622 deaths, which ranks third behind Europe and South American but ahead of North America.
In the past week, Asia's fatalities and infections each decreased 14%.
Indonesia ranks seventh in the world at 142,173 with an increase of 58, way down from a record 2,069 on July 27. The Asian nation's cases are 14th at 4,219,284, including 1,142 Sunday, way below the record 54,000 in July.
Iran is 11th at 121,109, including 229 Sunday, but the second one-week gain in Asia at 1,808, behind India at 1,898. Iran's one-shot vaccination rate is 43.6%
Turkey is sixth in the world for cases at 7,238,167, including 27,351 reported Sunday and 18th in deaths at 661, including 194 most recently. Turkey has a 64.9% vaccination rate.
In Japan, cases are way down from a high of 25,492 on Aug. 21 after the Summer Olympics ended on Aug. 8.
On Sunday, infections grew by 968 for a total of 1,705,557 and deaths went up 17 at 17,749.
Until late July, cases hadn't gone above 10,000 in one day.
Japan's case percentage is lower than elsewhere. Japan has 13,516 infections per million and 140 deaths per million. Worldwide, it's 30,199 cases per million and 6217.2 per million deaths. The United States' figures are 21,58 fatalities per million and 133,433 infections per million.
Japan has accelerated its vaccination program with 70.7% of the population getting at least one dose. The nation got a late start with the first doses administered in February.
Japan ended its state of emergency on Friday for the first time in six months in most of the nation, including Tokyo.
People were to stay at home and avoid going to crowded places. Also, restaurants and bars were urged to close by 8 p.m. and refrain from serving alcohol.
Also, Japan eased quarantine rules for travelers from abroad who have been fully vaccinated, reducing the required period of self-isolation after arrival from 14 days to 10.
The pandemic began in late 2019 in Mainland China, but the nation has reported only a few deaths in the past 12 months and stands in 77th at 4,636 behind Libya with 4,664. China added 41 cases Sunday.
Hong Kong's border with Mainland China remains closed, with negotiations expected to take four to five months, according to Professor David Hui Shu-cheong, a COVID-19 adviser.
China reports it has vaccinated 82.5% of its population with at least one dose.
In South Korea, it is 76.6%.
Chuseok, a festival to celebrate the harvest and honor ancestors, ended Wednesday.
Cases rose 2,247 on Sunday after a record 3,273 on Sept. 25. The nation has 2,507 deaths, including 3 more Sunday.
Israel, which is considered part of Asia, has a death toll of 7,821 with 39 reported Sunday, and 1,698 cases most recently with the record 20,523 Sept. 1. Israel has among the world's worst infection rates:138,241 per million.
The nation's one-shot vaccination rate is 67.7%, and on Sunday announced booster shots will be required for travelers and entry to public spaces for those 12 and older.
A Green Pass is required to enter restaurants, hotels, clubs, cultural venues and large private gatherings. Other people can only gain entry with proof of a negative test.
"Now is the time to be strict about the Green Pass, be cautious and not become complacent," Prime Minister Naftali Bennett of Israel said late Saturday.
Israel is among 16 nations outside the 27-nation European Union participating in the bloc's vaccine certificate program, meaning people who have been fully vaccinated can visit other member countries, including England, without needing to quarantine. Each nation can implement restrictions.
The EU has recommended removing the United States from its "safe travel" list, meaning American travelers would face restrictions that include quarantine and testing.
In Britain, those fully vaccinated with Oxford/AstraZeneca, Pfizer/BioNTech, Moderna or Janssen shots in the United States, Australia, New Zealand, South Korea or a European Union country will be exempt from quarantine.
Europe leads the continents with 1,229,072 deaths, and it has gained 6% in a week. Cases are 59,384,584, which is second, with an 8% rise.
Russia has been leading the increase with 5,993 deaths reported over the past week, second behind the United States with 12,628 and a 5% gain. Cases are the fourth highest at 162,352, a rise of 13%.
On Sunday, Russia reported a record 890 deaths for a total of 209,918 in fifth place worldwide. For six days in a row Russia gained at least 800 fatalities.
The nation has surpassed 700 deaths every day since early July. Until that month, the record was 635 on Dec. 24, 2020.
Cases rose 25,769, in fifth with 7,586,536, with the record 29,935 on Dec. 24.
Russia has inoculated only 32.9% of its population with only one vaccine dose. The nation administers its own vaccines, including Sputnik 5.
Last week, the United States announced it won't accept the Sputnik for entry into its country.
"We stand against attempts to politicize the global fight against COVID-19 and discriminate against effective vaccines for short-term political or economic gains," Russian Direct Investment Fund, the sovereign wealth fund that backed Sputnik V, said in a statement. It noted the vaccine has been approved in 70 countries where over 4 billion people reside, and its "efficacy and safety have been confirmed both during clinical trials and over the course of real-world use in a number of countries."
Russia's Kremlin said it was not considering a lockdown nationwide.
Besides Russia, two other European nations are in the top 10 for fatalities: Britain eighth with 136,953 and Italy ninth with 131,031. Also, France is 12th with 116,798, Germany 14th with 94,296, Spain 16th with 86,463, Poland 17th with 75,695 and Ukraine 19th with 56,775
In the past week, deaths decreased in Britain by 19% to 965, and 43 Sunday. Cases increased 1% with 30,439 Sunday.
Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he wants "big, bold decisions" to rebuild the country after COVID-19. The Tory Party's four-day conference opened Sunday in Manchester.
"We didn't go through COVID to go back to how things were before - to the status quo ante," he said in a statement Sunday. "Build back better means we want things to change and improve as we recover.
"That means taking the big, bold decisions on the priorities people care about -- like on social care, on supporting jobs, on climate change, tackling crime and leveling up."
Petrol retailers, meanwhile, have warned that the situation is getting worse in London and the South East.
Romania posted the second-most deaths in Europe over seven days at 1,203, rising 45% for a total of 37,544 in 21st, and 150 Sunday. Ukraine was third with 1,149 and 126 Sunday.
Italy reported 33 deaths on Sunday, while France added nine, Germany gained seven and Poland six. Spain doesn't release data on the weekend.
In the European Union, the one-shot vaccination rate is 67.7%, including 81.1% in Spain, 77.6% in France, 75% in Italy, 68.2% in Germany. Also in Europe, it's 73.2% in Britain, 52.3% in Poland and 30.2% in Ukraine.
In North America, the death toll was 1,086,330 with a weekly decline of 18% and cases were down 23% to 53,530,686.
The United States' deaths dropped 16% and cases 17%. On Saturday, the United States reported 690 deaths and 46,482 cases though most states don't report data on weekends. Deaths surpassed 700,000 Friday, according to Johns Hopkins tracking, which is 20,000 fewer than data by Worldometers.info.
Mexico is fourth in the world in deaths at 278,590 with a 21% weekly increase and 614 recorded Saturday. The nation's cases also dropped 21% with 7,369 most recently for 15th at 3,678,980.
Deaths are way down in Mexico from a one-day record of 1,803. The cases record of 28,953 was set Aug. 19.
Canada ranks 26th worldwide in deaths with 27,953, including 8 Sunday, and 28th in cases with 1,632,735, including 1,534 most recently. Canada's deaths record is 257 on Dec. 29 and the cases mark is 11,383 on Jan. 3.
Canada has one-third the rates per million than the United States with deaths 732 and cases 42,751.
Canada has the best one-shot vaccination rate of the three largest countries in North America at 76.2%. Mexico's percentage is 50.2%, though it was the first Latin American nation to begin vaccinating people.
The United States is at 64.7% for one shot.
The United States' non-essential travel ban with Canada and Mexico has been extended through Oct. 21. It began one year ago in March. Earlier, Canada announced it was reopening to vaccinated Americans.
The U.S. government plans to ease air travel restrictions on all fully vaccinated foreign visitors starting in November.
Mexico City is close to switching to low risk green from medium risk yellow on the coronavirus stoplight map, Eduardo Clark, the city's head of the Digital Agency for Public Innovation and a COVID spokesman, said Friday.
Coronavirus hospitalizations in the great metro area are 2,066, a reduction of 279 in one week.
Neighboring Mexico state will also remain yellow another next two weeks, Gov. Alfredo del Mazo said Friday.
In South America, there have been 1,156,907 deaths, decreasing 8% and 37,875,970 cases, going down 5%.
The continent made up 6% of world's cases and 9% of deaths in one week, the lowest since the start of the pandemic. It was 38% of global infections and 44% of fatalities in June, Bloomberg reported. The continent's population is 5.5%.
Brazil decreased 8% in deaths to 597,986, which is second in the world, and 5% in cases to 21,468,121, which ranks third. Brazil reported 237 deaths and 9,004 cases Sunday.
Also in the top 10 for deaths. Peru is sixth at 199,485 and Colombia 10th at 126,401. Argentina is 13th with 115,245 deaths and Chile 22nd with 37,494.
On Sunday, Chile reported 10 deaths, Peru 28, Colombia 29 and Argentina 6. These numbers are way down from records: Peru with 1,154, Colombia with 754, Argentina with 791, Chile with 316.
Chile has the highest vaccination rate on the continent at 80.7% with Brazil at 71.9%, Argentina 66.2%, Colombia at 52.3% and Peru 47.6%.
"Our population has a culture of vaccination and there isn't as much rejection as in other places," Maria Teresa Valenzuela, a professor at the University of the Andes in Chile and an adviser to the health ministry, told Bloomberg. "People have been responsible in obeying the calls of the authorities and it's been orderly in terms of ages, risk groups and finding gaps where it has lagged behind."
Latin America is at 58% with at least one shot, according to New York Times tracking.
Africa's rate is 6.8%.
Specifically, South Africa has vaccinated just 21.4% of its population with at least one shot.
"In Africa, the major issue has been a supply issue rather than a demand issue," Dr. Richard Mihigo, the World Health Organization's program coordinator for vaccine development in Africa, said at a news conference Thursday.
Africa has 16.72% of the world's population but its share of vaccinations is around 3%.
In the continent, deaths dropped 16% for the week with a total of 212,590 and cases were down 15% at 8,413,760.
South Africa is 15th with 87,780 deaths, including 27 Sunday. And cases rose 809 most recently.
Tunisia has the second-most deaths with 24,921 ahead of Egypt with 17,436.
Oceania, with only 42.3 million people, has 3,009 deaths with an increase of 29% in seven days, or 234, and cases are 236,265, up 17,497 with an increase of 9%. Europe is the only other continent with increases in both categories.
New Zealand's deaths remain at 27. Australia's toll increased to 1,334, with 13 reported Sunday and 101 in a week.
New Zealand added 33 cases Sunday and Australia was up 2,106 with a record 2,400 on Thursday.
Australia has a vaccination rate of 66.6% with New Zealand at 66.9% among the entire populations.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said last week Australians "should not expect broad-based, metropolitan-wide lockdowns" when 80% of the population is fully vaccinated.
Victoria, which includes Melbourne, and New South Wales, which includes Sydney, have been under lockdowns for more than three months.
Fiji, with a 68% vaccinated rate, has 633 deaths, a rise of 42 in the past week and one Sunday. On May 3 there were four fatalities. Cases have climbed from 121 on May 3 to 51,202, including 34 most recently. Fiji has 903,457 residents.
Guam, a territory of the United States with fewer than 200,000 residents, has 198 deaths with none Saturday and 14 in a week, and 15,252 cases, including 84 most recently. Its vaccination rate is 77.2% for the entire population, including 90.4% of those eligible, which is 12 and older.