France sees health pass protestors march again

For the fifth consecutive Saturday, thousands marched through France, from families to far right sympathizers, to protest the COVID-19 health card that was required to be used to get into restaurants and long-distance train stations.

France sees health pass protestors march again

A week after the Paris health pass was implemented, 1,600 police officers were deployed to three marches. Protesters argued that the health pass restricts their freedom and called for "liberty".

According to polls, most French support the health pass.

France is currently facing an epidemic of new infections due to the transmission-prone delta variant. In Montpellier, some 7,500 people marched. It is located in the most infected region in the country, with an infection rate of 600 for every 100,000 inhabitants.

Nearly 68% of France's population had received at least one shot on Friday. This was 46.1 million people. Over 38.8million, 57% of the population, received two shots.

Here's WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING.

NEW YORK -- New York's health officials have announced that they will soon issue guidance to state officials on how to give additional COVID-19 vaccine doses for people with severely weakened immune system, as the federal government has allowed it.

Dr. Howard Zucker, State Health Commissioner, said Friday that the state's vaccination task force met to discuss the issue. Zucker claims that the group will quickly complete its review.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has announced that transplant recipients and similar immune-compromised people can receive a third dose Pfizer or Moderna vaccinations. This does not apply to the general population.

Like other states, New York has its own task force consisting of scientists and experts in health who review COVID-19 vaccinations. This is a process that the state claims will ensure New Yorkers have confidence in the vaccines.

The FDA's decision is applicable to approximately 3% of U.S adults, which includes organ transplant recipients. Others who may be eligible include those with untreated HIV infection or cancer who are currently receiving certain chemotherapies.

MONTGOMERY (Ala.) -- Alabama's COVID-19 cases are on the rise following a spike in deaths due to low vaccination rates and the contagious delta variant.

Scott Harris, the State Health Officer, says Alabama is now reporting double-digit deaths for the first time since months. According to Johns Hopkins University, the seven-day average daily death rate in Alabama rose from 21 per day to 21 on Aug. 11.

Harris stated that the number of reported deaths was expected to increase as the state experiences an increase in hospitalizations and cases.

"Deaths are a lagging indicator. Deaths happen last. Harris says that we see an increase in the number of cases, hospitalizations and deaths.

On Friday, Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey, the Alabama governor, issued a limited emergency. This was to allow medical providers more flexibility in staffing and capacity decisions as well as easier shipment of emergency supplies and equipment. The Republican governor stated that she will not issue any closure orders or mandates for masks.

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DALLAS -- Texas health officials reported Friday 13,614 cases of coronavirus and 144 deaths, the highest number of deaths since February 26th.

According to state health officials, Texas saw 11,261 COVID-19 hospitalizations.

The state is rapidly approaching the highest number of hospitalizations during pandemic -- 14,218 Jan. 11, when it was undergoing a winter surge.

Since the outbreak of the pandemic, Texas has seen more than 2.7 Million confirmed cases and 54.196 deaths.

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SEDALIA MO. MO. -- The Missouri State Fair opened this week in Sedalia to a large crowd of mostly unmasked people.

According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, fair officials decided that the full fair would be returned after it was replaced by a smaller youth livestock show last season due to safety concerns.

Mark Wolfe, Director of the State Fair, says that his staff expected up to 340,000 people before the event ended on Aug. 22.

Masks are not required at the Illinois state fair. Brian Eggers (55-year-old farmer from Chillicothe) was one of the unmasked. He also lost a neighbor and aunts and uncles due to COVID-19, but he still hasn't been vaccinated.

He says, "I'm not against vaccination, but I haven’t gotten it yet myself," while he watches a youth livestock show. He adds: "If God wishes to take me, that's his decision."

Jessica Miller, who managed the vaccination station at the fair's fair, said five patients had been immunized within the first two hours. Miller was told by some that their jobs required the vaccine.

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LANSING (Mich.) -- Michigan has seen more than 20,000 deaths due to COVID-19. A top state official encouraged people to take precautions.

According to state health officials, Michigan has recorded 20,011 confirmed deaths from March 2020's first death.

Elizabeth Hertel, director of Michigan Health and Human Services, says that the state has suffered "real devastation." Officials in the health sector are ready for the possibility of new infections from the highly transmissible delta strain that is currently sweeping the country.

Michigan has found delta variant infections in over 50 counties and the City of Detroit.

Michigan's total deaths have reached 69% for those aged 70 and over. About 22% of Michigan's deaths have been confirmed to be African American. Blacks make up 14% of the state population.

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NASHVILLE (Tenn.) -- Tennessee's former director of vaccinations plans to leave the state in this fall amid rising tension over how to fight the coronavirus.

This summer, Dr. Michelle Fiscus was fired amid Republican outrage at her recommendation to inoculate teenage girls against the coronavirus.

Brad Fiscus, her husband, spoke to WPLN-FM regarding their move from California to northern Virginia. He believes that the move will open up more opportunities for his wife to work in public healthcare.

He is a member of the Williamson County school board, which is just south Nashville. Protesters displayed signs at Tuesday's board meeting with messages such as "I won't let you muzzle your child" and "My Child, my choice." They were eventually escorted by law enforcement.

Brad Fiscus said the move was bittersweet as they had intended to remain in Franklin, Tennessee until retirement.

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WINDOW ROCK (Ariz.) -- Officials from the Navajo Nation say that there is a continued rise in coronavirus cases among their tribe members.

It reported Friday that it had 67 new cases and one more death.

For eight consecutive days, Aug. 1-8, health officials on the reservation reported that there were no deaths or cases and that only a few people had been affected. The Navajo Department of Health issued a notice of health for 19 communities this week due to the uncontrolled spread of coronavirus.

The Navajo Health Department issued Thursday's emergency restrictions to schools and businesses, and revised the in-person gathering limits for some events.

These numbers have increased to 31,821 confirmed cases, and 1,387 deaths on the reservation since then.

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LONDON -- The COVID-19 vaccines were to be obtained by low-income countries through a shared international system, rather than waiting for unreliable donations of rich countries.

It hasn’t worked out this way. Even though they already had vaccines, some rich countries purchased COVAX doses. In June, Britain received twice the number of COVAX doses than Africa's entire continent.

The Associated Press has compiled a list showing that many countries are in the exact same predicament as the initiative.

Brook Baker, a Northeastern University professor of law who is specialized in access to medicine, believes it is unconscionable for rich countries to dip into COVAX vaccine stocks when over 90 developing countries do not have access. The Serum Institute of India (COVAX's largest supplier), stopped sharing vaccines with COVAX in April due to the surge of cases.

Many rich countries are reluctant to give large amounts of money before they have completed vaccinating their citizens. The U.S. did not receive any COVAX doses, but Canada, Australia and New Zealand received them. Canada was so criticized for accepting COVAX shipments, it will not request any more.

COVAX has not yet provided any doses to Venezuela. Haiti received half the amount it was allocated and Syria a tenth. Officials claim that in some cases doses were not sent because the countries didn't have plans to distribute them.

Officials from Britain confirmed that the U.K. had received 539,000 doses of vaccine in June. They also have options to purchase another 27 million shots through COVAX.

The COVAX initiative, which is run by the World Health Organization has not delivered more than 10% of its promised doses. COVAX works in partnership with Gavi, the global vaccine alliance, and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations. These groups were established in 2017 to develop vaccines that can prevent outbreaks.

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TEHRAN (Iran) -- The Iranian state media reports that authorities will impose a six day "general lockdown" across cities throughout the country.

Bazars, markets, public offices, and movie theaters are all included in the lockdown. The lockdown will begin Monday and last until Saturday. The decision was made by the national coronavirus taskforce. It also ordered travel bans between all Iranian cities, from Sunday through Friday.

Iran also reported 29700 daily cases and 466 death on Saturday. Pandemic numbers currently stand at 4.3 Million confirmed cases and 97.208 confirmed deaths.

Iran is far behind other countries when it comes to vaccinations. Only 3.8 million Iranians have received both vaccine doses.

Many medical professionals on the front line have been given shots from Iran or the Chinese Sinopharm vaccine. This vaccine may not be as effective as other inoculations.

Iran's government has announced that its vaccine homemade provides 85% protection against the coronavirus. However, it did not disclose any data. Iran also imports Russia’s Sputnik V vaccine and the Oxford-AstraZeneca shot via the U.N.-backed COVAX programme.

In January, Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Al Khamenei called vaccines from Britain or the U.S. "forbidden."

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MOSCOW -- Russia reported 819 coronavirus deaths per day on Saturday. This is the third consecutive day of record numbers.

According to the government's coronavirus taskforce, there were 22,144 confirmed cases. Since June, Russia has been suffering from a sudden surge in infections. The number of confirmed cases rose from 9,000 per day at the start of the summer, to over 23,000 in the early days.

Officials blamed the rise in vaccine demand on the spread of the delta variant. They sought to increase vaccination uptake. This has been lower than many Western countries.

Since the outbreak of the pandemic, Russia has seen more than 6.5 Million infections and 169.683 deaths.

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NEW YORK -- People will need to present proof of coronavirus vaccination in order to work in a hospital, teach, or eat at a restaurant.

This proof will be required to enter many businesses in New Orleans and San Francisco starting next week. New York City was first to require proof that vaccinations were valid in order to enter restaurants or go to the gym. Los Angeles is also considering the idea.

These new measures aim to stop the influx of patients that has pushed hospitals to breaking point.

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SYDNEY -- Australia’s most populous state reported a record number of coronavirus infections Saturday. There were also increased penalties for violating pandemic restrictions.

On Friday, 390 people in New South Wales had reported a record number. Overnight, four people died. This is the result of an epidemic of the delta variant that was first discovered in Sydney in June to 42.

Gladys Berejiklian, New South Wales Premier, has announced that the penalties for violating pandemic rules like breaching quarantine orders have been raised from 1,000 Australian Dollars ($737) up to AU$5,000 ($3,685).

Residents of Sydney will now be limited to a distance of 5 km (3 miles) from their homes, half the distance that they were allowed previously. From 5 p.m. to Aug. 22, New South Wales will be under lockdown.

John Barilaro, Deputy Premier, tweeted that stay-at-home orders were intended to limit movement and protect local communities from the COVID-19 situation. From Sunday night, police will enforce stay-at-home order violations in Sydney by military personnel.

Since June 26, 10, 10 days after the initial delta case was discovered, Sydney has been under lockdown.

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