A worker wearing a protective mask gives out hand sanitiser to customers during happy hour at the Oscar Wilde bar in New York, US, on Wednesday, June 10, 2020.

China seals off county linked to Beijing cluster: Global virus update

A worker wearing a protective mask gives out hand sanitiser to customers during happy hour at the Oscar Wilde bar in New York, US, on Wednesday, June 10, 2020.

Key Developments:

China Seals Off County Linked to Beijing Cluster

China put 400,000 residents of a northern county under lockdown at the weekend after at least a dozen coronavirus cases associated with the Beijing outbreak were reported there.

In a sign that the resurgence of cases in the capital is proving difficult to stamp out even as officials say they’ve been largely contained, Hebei province’s Anxin county has been sealed off and each household can assign only one person to go out for necessities daily, state media reported. Vehicles cannot enter the county and only those with special passes can leave.

The containment measures in Anxin, 140 kilometers (87 miles) from Beijing, are more severe than in the capital itself, where the cluster has grown to 311 people since it was first detected June 12.

UK Care Home Death Rate Higher Than Germany’s

COVID-19 is killing Spanish and UK care home residents at a higher rate than in other countries.

In the UK, 5.3% of care home residents may have died from coronavirus infections, a figure 13 times worse than in Germany, according to a report by researchers from the London School of Economics. Of 15 countries analyzed the only one with a higher rate of COVID-19 fatalities was Spain, at 6.1%.

Tour de France Prepares for Virtual Race

The organizer of the Tour de France will hold a virtual version of the event starting this week as cycling grapples with maintaining interest in a sport that was already in trouble before the pandemic hit.

Gilead’s Remdesivir to Cost $2,340 for 5-Day Treatment

Remdesivir is one of the first widely used drugs for COVID-19. It received an emergency use authorisation from US regulators in May, after a trial found the medicine hastened recovery by about four days in hospitalised patients.

“We wanted to make sure that nothing gets in the way of remdesivir getting to patients,” Gilead Chief Executive Officer Daniel O’Day said in an interview. The price “will make sure all patients around the world have access to this medicine.

Iran Fatalities Increase to Record

Iran recorded the highest daily number of fatalities since the start of the outbreak, with 162 deaths in the past 24 hours. The death toll reached 10,670 from a total of 225,205 cases.

The level of infections is high or alarming in 11 of 31 Iranian provinces, Health Ministry spokeswoman Sima Sadat Lari said on state television.

Luxembourg Infections Accelerate

Luxembourg’s new cases increased more than usual in the last four days, and the government is seeking clarity on the causes, Health Minister Paulette Lenert said.

A party held earlier this month is one reason why numbers rapidly rose to between 22 and 44 in the past three days, Lenert told RTL radio Monday. There have also been several new, more spread-out infections that are more worrying, she said. The increase coincides with the government’s decision to ease lockdown measures, allowing bigger private gatherings.

Russia Reports 1.1% Increase in Cases

Russia recorded 6,719 new coronavirus infections in the past 24 hours, bringing the total to 641,156, according to the government’s virus response center.

The tally was the lowest since April 29, and 31.6% of the new cases were asymptomatic, the center said. The death toll for the day was 93, bringing the total to 9,166. The center said 4,343 people recovered, taking the total to 403,430.

Austrian Infections Rise Amid Clusters

Austrian daily new infections rose to 74 on Sunday, bringing the seven-day average to 45, the highest level since May 22, according to the interior ministry.

Infections were driven by a cluster in Linz, an industrial city two hours west of Vienna, where the virus spread in services of the Pentecostal church community, according to health agency AGES. A Rotary club meeting in Salzburg contributed to new cases in that region last week. Austria has 551 live virus cases, 48% more than two weeks ago.

German Infection Rate Stays Below Key Threshold

Germany’s coronavirus infection rate stayed below the key threshold of 1.0 for a fifth day. The reproduction factor rose to 0.71 on Sunday, from 0.62 the previous day, according to the latest estimate by the country’s health body, the Robert Koch Institute.

There were 235 new cases in the 24 hours through Monday morning, down from 422 the previous day, according to data from Johns Hopkins University. There were no new fatalities recorded.

A jump in the infection rate from around June 20 was driven by local outbreaks, including in two municipalities in the western state of North Rhine-Westphalia.