Saturday, December 4, 2021

LIVE: Coronavirus daily news updates, October 23: What to know today about COVID-19 in the Seattle area, Washington state and the world

Booster doses for all three coronavirus vaccines are now available in Washington state for eligible individuals, the state Department of Health announced Friday.

Last month, providers began offering booster doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine to older adults at high risk for serious disease. According to the DOH, more than 345,000 doses have been administered to the state, including a third dose for people with moderately or severely compromised immune systems.

Following recommendations from the US Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention this week, health care providers may begin offering booster doses of Moderna and Johnson & Johnson’s vaccines.

Meanwhile, child-sized doses of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine appear safe and about 91% effective in preventing symptomatic infections in 5- to 11-year-olds, study details released Friday Because the US considers opening up vaccination to that age group. Shots could start as early as November – with the first kids fully protected by Christmas – if regulators go ahead.

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We’re updating this page with the latest news about the COVID-19 pandemic and its effects on the Seattle area, America, and the world. Click here to see live updates from the past day and all of our other coronavirus coverage, and here to see how we track the daily spread across Washington.


10:30 am

Sri Lanka gives booster shot to front-line workers, seniors

Colombo, Sri Lanka (AP) – Sri Lanka on Saturday announced plans to give booster shots to front-line workers, as the elderly geared up to further ease COVID-19 restrictions in the island nation.

From November 1, workers in the health, security, airport and tourism sectors will start receiving the third dose of the vaccine, Channa Jayasumana, the state’s Minister of Pharmaceutical Production, Supply and Regulation, said.

He added that Pfizer booster shots would include shots above 60 years of age.

So far, 59% of the 22 million population have been vaccinated, and the health ministry expects that rate to rise to 70% within three weeks.

The booster rollout comes ahead of the government’s plan to lift months-long travel restrictions between provinces on November 1. The government has also announced that the train service, which has been halted for almost two months, will resume next week.

Sri Lanka lifted a six-week lockdown on 1 October and since then, life has returned to normal with the reopening of cinemas, restaurants and wedding parties as COVID-19 daily cases dipped below 1,000 with fewer than 50 deaths Huh.

However, restrictions on public gatherings continue with some restrictions on public transport.

-Bharat Mallavarachi, The Associated Press

9:45 am

First big New Orleans parade since pandemic: Boo’s Crewe

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Parade-loving New Orleans is about to get its groove back.

More than a year after the coronavirus put an end to mass parades, an assortment of witches, ghosts and other masked creatures are set to take to the streets on Saturday night in the city’s first parade since the pandemic has put an end to such frivolity.

Crewe of Boo is a Halloween-themed parade that extends from the city’s Marigny neighborhood to the French Quarter and Warehouse District. Riders aboard the floats dress up in Halloween-themed outfits and throw funky and fun trinkets and pearls to the crowds that pack the streets. The parade usually consists of marching bands as well as dancing between floats.

But the last time such a parade took place on the streets of the city was Mardi Gras 2020, which was largely credited with contributing to the city becoming an early hot spot for the coronavirus. As the severity and severity of the pandemic became apparent, so did parades as well as concerts.

If the city can successfully pull off the Boo Parade’s Halloween-themed crve, without a surge in COVID-19 infections, it will bolster Mayor LaToya Cantrell’s tentative plans to bring back the grand Mardi Gras processions that take place in the city. The roads fill up during the annual. Pre-Lenten celebration.

“This is a step toward the return of Mardi Gras next spring,” Cantrell said in a Twitter post after announcing in September that the Crewe of the Boo parade could go ahead. “What happens next depends on what we do now!!”

Read the full story.

—Rebecca Santana, Associated Press

9:00 am

Seattle area pet owners face long waits, and vet staff burn out

At Animal Medical Center in Seattle, dogs (French Bulldogs, Maltese, numerous doodles), cats (Siamese, shorthairs) and humans (Standards) wait for an employee to determine how long in advance each animal can be cared for.

Which of the 20 animals is most at risk? Today, clinic staff can only see priority 1 pets, which may die without immediate intervention, and some animals are likely to survive if care is given within hours.

Illnesses include diabetes, acute kidney failure and seizures, and a dog ate sugar-free gum with xylitol, a toxic ingredient. A dog with a crumpled chest is the most important. Some will have to wait potentially up to eight hours, depending on their case.

“It’s kind of tame, it’s manageable,” says April Panipat, manager of Shoreline Animal Hospital.

It may be considered tame now, but the number of calls and patients is an extreme change before the COVID-19 pandemic, which caused new problems or exacerbated the underlying issues facing the veterinary industry. In some days, several animals need significant care and monitoring one after the other. Three or four patients can die simultaneously.

The situation is very similar in animal hospitals and veterinary clinics across the region and nationally – long waits for appointments, high staff turnover and burnout, stressful environments Some providers are required to tighten their policies regarding owner behavior.

Read the full story.

-Paige Cornwell, Seattle Times staff reporter

8:11 am

Russian COVID spike remains, setting new death record

MOSCOW (AP) – Russia is reporting a record high number of coronavirus infections and COVID-19 deaths as the country approaches a week of non-working days aimed at halting a sharp jump in cases.

The National Coronavirus Task Force said on Saturday that 1,075 people had died from the virus the previous day and the number of new infections had risen to 37,678 – the pandemic’s biggest single-day number.

The daily death rate is about 33% higher than the one recorded at the end of September and the infection cases increased by about 70% in the last month.

Only a third of Russia’s 146 million people have been vaccinated, frustrating officials and straining the country’s health care system.

Facing widespread resistance to vaccination, President Vladimir Putin has responded to the worsening situation by ordering Russians to stay off work between October 30 and November 7.

Many regions are imposing additional restrictions, including closing gyms, theaters and sit-down service in restaurants or restricting customers who can show QR codes to show that they have been fully vaccinated.

Read the full story.

-Jim Heintz, Associated Press

8:07 am

Service dogs navigate the challenges of COVID: ‘The dog doesn’t understand social distancing’

Life is complicated for everyone in the pandemic, but social distancing, mask-wearing and other practices to reduce the spread of the coronavirus present special challenges for people with disabilities who depend on service animals.

Organizations that train dogs – often Labradors and Golden Retrievers, among other breeds – are just beginning to look at what the pandemic can do to the first classes of puppies after 18 months of low socialization and exposure to public places.

Dog-handler teams have had to adapt to virtual training, different commands, and new methods to keep their skills sharp to avoid uncomfortable and potentially dangerous situations.

This is especially important, trainers and people with disabilities say, as more people return to their pre-pandemic routines of taking public transportation and attending work and school in person.

Read the full story.

-Jenna Portnoy, The Washington Post

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