As cases continue to surge exponentially across the globe, the World Health Organization issued a grim warning on Friday that the second year of COVID-19 is set to be “far more deadly”, with Japan extending a state of emergency amid growing calls for the Olympics to be scrapped.
WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said, “We are on track for the second year of this pandemic to be far more deadly than the first.”
The mood is dark in Japan just 10 weeks before the Olympics, as campaigners submit a petition with more than 350,000 signatures calling for the government to cancel the Games altogether.
In Vietnam, since the new wave broke out on April 27, 808 new local cases of COVID-19 in 26 cities and provinces have been recorded as of May 15. Of them, 198 are in Hanoi, with 110 in two hospitals under lockdown, 177 are in Bac Ninh Province, 122 in Bac Giang Province, and 115 in Da Nang.
From May 13, Hanoi authorities ordered the suspension of all physical and sports activities in public including golf courses. While Da Nang banned the gathering of more than five people in public and outside of offices and schools, Ho Chi Minh City will re-establish 12 COVID-19 checkpoints at the entrances of the city from May 15.
To further combat the threats and present outbreak, the Ministry of Health confirmed Vietnam will get 31 million vaccine doses developed by US-based firm Pfizer and Germany's BioNTech Pfizer Inc. this year. For the remaining doses, 38.9 million of AstraZeneca vaccine will be provided to the country via Covax.
A total of 1.7 million doses AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine under Covax are expected to arrive in Vietnam tomorrow, May 16.