Coronavirus: What’s Happening in Canada and Around the World on Saturday

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Florida is in the throes of its deadliest wave of COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic, a disaster caused by the highly contagious delta variant.

While Florida’s vaccination rate is slightly above the national average, the Sunshine State has a disproportionate population of seniors, particularly vulnerable to the virus; a dynamic party scene; and a Republican governor who has taken a hard line against mask requirements, vaccine passports and business closures.

As of mid-August, the state was recording an average of 244 deaths per day, down from just 23 per day at the end of June and eclipsing the previous peak of 227 in the summer of 2020 (due to both how deaths are recorded in Florida and with discrepancies in the reports, more recent figures on deaths per day are incomplete.)

Hospitals had to hire refrigerated trucks to store more bodies. Funeral homes were overwhelmed.

A health worker administers a COVID-19 test at a drive-thru site in Miami on August 30. (Joe Raedle / Getty Images)

Cristina Miles, a mother of five from Orange Park, a suburb of Jacksonville, is among those who suffer more than one loss at a time. Her husband died after contracting COVID-19, and less than two weeks later, her stepmother succumbed to the virus.

“I feel like we’re all in some sort of weird dreaming state,” she said, adding that her children were crying differently – one stopping, the other feeling inspired to pass a tough swimming test and the older one going on with his life as usual.

Hospitals have been inundated with patients who, like Miles’ husband and mother-in-law, have not been vaccinated.

A positive sign, the number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 in Florida has fallen over the past two weeks, from more than 17,000 to 14,200 on Friday, indicating that the outbreak is subsiding.

Florida made an aggressive effort early on to immunize its seniors. But Dr Kartik Cherabuddi, professor of infectious diseases at the University of Florida, said the raw number of people who had yet to be vaccinated was still large, given Florida’s 4.6 million age population. .

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Overall, more than 46,300 people have died from COVID-19 in Florida, which ranks 17th in per capita deaths among states.

The majority of deaths this summer – like last summer – are among the elderly, but the proportion of people under 65 who die from COVID-19 has increased significantly, which health officials attribute to the drop vaccination rates in these age groups.

Dr. Theresa Tam, Canada’s chief public health officer, said on Friday that unvaccinated people are 12 times more likely to be infected and 36 times more likely to be hospitalized if infected.

What’s happening across Canada

A woman wearing a face mask is seen in Montreal on Saturday. (Jean-Claude Taliana / Radio-Canada)

  • Have. reports 944 new cases – highest daily number since late May

What is happening in the world

As of Saturday, more than 220 million cases of COVID-19 had been reported worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University. The death toll worldwide was over 4.5 million.

In the Americas, some cities in Brazil are providing booster shots of the COVID-19 vaccine, even though most people have not yet received their second vaccine. The move reflects the country’s concern about the highly contagious delta variant.

On Thursday, a resident receives a booster shot of the COVID-19 vaccine at a nursing home in Rio de Janeiro. (Silvia Izquierdo / The Associated Press)

In EuropeGermany’s top health official has called for more citizens to get vaccinated, warning that if the numbers do not increase, hospitals could be inundated with COVID-19 patients by the end of the year. Health Minister Jens Spahn tweeted that “we need at least 5 million vaccines for a safe fall and winter”.

In the Asia Pacific region, New Zealand reported its first coronavirus death in more than six months, as the number of new cases continued to decline. Health officials said the woman who died was 90 years old and had underlying health issues.

In Africa, a survey of young people aged 18 to 24 in 15 countries on the continent found that nearly a fifth of 4,500 respondents said they had lost their jobs, and 37% said they had to stop or suspend their studies. Eight percent of those surveyed saw their wages cut, 18 percent had to return home, and 10 percent said they were forced to care for family members.

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