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COVID-19: Top news stories about the coronavirus pandemic on 1 December | World Economic Forum – World Economic Forum

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Confirmed cases of COVID-19 have passed 262.8 million globally, according to Johns Hopkins University. The number of confirmed deaths has now passed 5.21 million. More than 7.99 billion vaccination doses have been administered globally, according to Our World in Data.
China detected 91 domestically transmitted COVID-19 cases with confirmed symptoms on Tuesday, the highest daily count since 2 November.
Australian authorities say they’ve detected another probable case of the Omicron variant in Sydney.
Serum Institute of India has sent doses of COVID-19 vaccine to Indonesia, in its first export of the Novavax shot through the COVAX vaccine-sharing facility, the Indian government said on Wednesday.
Singapore’s COVID-19 vaccination rate has risen to 96% of the eligible population. The city-state has one of the highest vaccination rates in the world.
Nigeria has confirmed its first cases of the Omicron variant in two travellers who arrived from South Africa last week.
The United States, Canada and Hong Kong have all tightened rules around international travel in the wake of the emergence of the Omicron COVID-19 variant.
The US will require all air travellers entering the country to show a negative COVID-19 test performed within one day of departure. Currently, vaccinated travellers can present a negative result within 3 days. Passengers will also be required to test 3-5 days after arrival.
Hong Kong will ban non-residents from entering the city from Japan, Portugal and Sweden from Friday. Residents can only board flights if fully vaccinated and will have to undergo 21-days of quarantine in a hotel at their own cost.

Canada will extend its ban on travellers from southern Africa to also cover those from Nigeria, Malawi and Egypt, health officials said on Tuesday, for a total of 10 countries. Canada will require people arriving by air from all nations except the United States to take a COVID-19 test, Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos said.
The moves come as the World Health Organization warned that blanket travel bans will not stop the spread of Omicron. The organization urged ‘an evidence-informed and risk-based approach’ to any measures, including possible screening or quarantine of international travellers.
The COVID Response Alliance for Social Entrepreneurship is a coalition of 85 global leaders, hosted by the World Economic Forum. Its mission: Join hands in support of social entrepreneurs everywhere as vital first responders to the pandemic and as pioneers of a green, inclusive economic reality.
Its COVID Social Enterprise Action Agenda, outlines 25 concrete recommendations for key stakeholder groups, including funders and philanthropists, investors, government institutions, support organizations, and corporations. In January of 2021, its members launched its 2021 Roadmap through which its members will roll out an ambitious set of 21 action projects in 10 areas of work. Including corporate access and policy change in support of a social economy.
For more information see the Alliance website or its “impact story” here.
A panel of expert advisors to the United States Food and Drug Administration have narrowly voted to recommend the agency authorize Merck’s antiviral COVID-19 pill.
If the FDA authorizes the drug, it would be the first at-home treatment for the virus nearly two years into the pandemic. The authorization would likely be limited to patients at high risk of developing severe disease, although the exact population would be defined by the agency.
“COVID-19 is still an emergency situation,” said committee member Dr. David Hardy, who voted yes. “There is a need for something like this. This is the first opportunity that an oral outpatient medication for mildly symptomatic to moderately symptomatic persons would be available, although I do have questions about its overall longer-term efficacy.”
Merck published data last week suggesting the drug was less effective than previously thought.

Joe Myers, Writer, Formative Content
The views expressed in this article are those of the author alone and not the World Economic Forum.
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