Virus: vaccination continues in the EU, recovery plan ratified in the United States

Vaccination campaigns against Covid-19 continue Monday in several European countries without ending the restrictions imposed in the face of the pandemic, while Donald Trump ratified the recovery plan in the United States.


Vaccination campaigns against Covid-19 continue Monday in several European countries without ending the restrictions imposed in the face of the pandemic, while Donald Trump ratified the recovery plan in the United States.

Most of the EU countries started this weekend to vaccinate their populations against Covid-19, by injecting the elderly, caregivers or even politicians with the first doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, a few days after the green light from the EU.

Their delivery to eight European countries will however suffer a slight delay, due to a logistical problem at the Pfizer plant in Belgium, announced the Spanish Ministry of Health, without specifying which were the other seven affected countries.

In Spain, it is a resident of a retirement home in Guadalajara (center), Araceli Rosario Hidalgo Sanchez, 96, who was the first person to be vaccinated against the Covid-19 on Sunday.

In Italy, the first doses of the Pfizer-BioNtech vaccine were injected on Sunday with a nurse, Claudia Alivernini, and the director of the virology laboratory at Spallanzani Hospital in Rome, Professor Maria Rosaria Capobianchi.

In France, where the epidemic has caused the death of more than 62,500 people and where the virus is actively circulating, it is a 78-year-old woman, Mauricette M., who was the first person vaccinated on Sunday, at the René hospital. -Muret de Sevran (Paris region).

The start of the vaccination campaign that the President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen called a “touching moment of unity” and a “European success story”.

But in France, a majority (56%) do not plan to be vaccinated against Covid-19, according to a survey. French President Emmanuel Macron hoped that “reason and science (would) guide us”.

A health defense council will be organized in France on Tuesday, while several elected officials, especially in the Grand Est, are worried about a rebound in the epidemic and are calling for a third confinement.

– New cases of the British variant –

Germany, Hungary and Slovakia led the way in the EU on Saturday, a day ahead of the official launch of the campaign.

Outside the EU, Norway also started its vaccination campaign on Sunday, as did the Sultanate of Oman.

In Israel, the army began its vaccination campaign on Monday for soldiers. In the general population, 379,000 people had already been vaccinated Monday morning.

Before them, many other countries around the world had started vaccinating against Covid-19, which has killed at least 1,765,049 people and infected more than 80.6 million people around the world, according to a report drawn up on Monday by AFP.

Although the first injections give cause for hope, concerns have arisen in recent days after the reporting, in more and more countries, of a variant of the coronavirus that recently appeared in Great Britain, probably more contagious than the strain of ‘origin.

This new strain has been spotted in several European countries as well as on other continents, and in particular in Canada, Jordan and Japan.

In Spain, five cases of the new British strain have been detected in Andalusia, local authorities said.

In South Korea, three cases of the British variant have also been identified, health authorities said on Monday.

South Korea, which had notably banned flights to and from Great Britain until the end of the year, extended the measure until January 7.

More than 50 countries have ordered restrictions on travel from Britain.

Among them, Saudi Arabia announced on Sunday the one week extension of the closure of its land and sea borders and the suspension of international flights.

– Stimulus plan ratified –

In China, a “citizen journalist” who had covered the epidemic in Wuhan, was sentenced on Monday to four years in prison, when the Chinese authorities are praising their success in the fight against the disease.

In the United States, the country most bereaved by the pandemic, President Donald Trump finally ratified on Sunday evening, after days of resistance, the new $ 900 billion economic stimulus plan granting aid to households and small businesses, which had been adopted Monday by forceps by Congress.

“I ratify this legislation to restore unemployment benefits, stop (rental) evictions, provide assistance to donors, add additional funds to the business loan program,” said Mr. Trump.

The famous American immunologist Anthony Fauci said on Sunday that he feared that the worst of the pandemic was yet to come after the end of the year holidays.

Faced with worrying levels of contamination, several countries are again subject to restrictive measures, while the prospect of the New Year raises concerns.

In Australia, local authorities said no spectators would be allowed Thursday evening on the shores of Sydney Bay to admire the traditional New Year’s fireworks display.

Poland began a three-week partial containment on Monday across the country: shopping centers, hotels and ski resorts will be closed, and only food stores, pharmacies and a few other businesses will remain open.

Israel began a third general lockdown on Sunday for at least two weeks, and Austria confined its population on Saturday until January 24.