- U.S. president asks people to get inoculated against COVID-19 to protect their communities against the highly contagious delta variant of the coronavirus.
- Reopening anxiety: Experts say shaking lockdown habits will be hard for some.
- Calgary city council votes to rescind mask bylaw as Calgary Stampede officials prepare for opening.
- 36% of eligible British Columbians now fully vaccinated, as COVID-19 numbers keep falling.
- Quebecers can now book a 2nd dose of vaccine just 4 weeks after 1st.
- Indonesia facing surge in COVID-19 cases, preparing for more hospitalizations.
- Have a coronavirus question or news tip for CBC News? Email: COVID@cbc.ca
U.S. President Joe Biden on Tuesday encouraged Americans who have not yet been vaccinated against COVID-19 to get their shots to protect themselves from the widely spreading, highly contagious delta variant of the coronavirus.
Biden told reporters the United States will reach a mark of 160 million Americans being fully vaccinated by the end of this week, but he warned against complacency as the delta variant spreads among those who have not been inoculated.
“Millions of Americans are still unvaccinated and unprotected. And because of that, their communities are at risk, their friends are at risk, the people they care about are at risk,” Biden said. “This is an even bigger concern because of the delta variant.”
He said getting vaccinated was the “patriotic thing to do.”
Meanwhile, overseas, Britain’s government said it is scrapping rules for self-isolation for those who are fully vaccinated starting in mid-August, as the country prepares to lift most remaining coronavirus restrictions.
Currently, people who are notified they’ve come into close contact with someone who tested positive must enter self-isolation for 10 days. Health Secretary Sajid Javid said this rule no longer applies starting Aug. 16 to anyone who has received both doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.
Young people under 18 years old will no longer need to isolate unless they test positive — a change that will come as a big relief for families with schoolchildren who have had to repeatedly isolate and miss school because of reported cases in their classes.
Javid said those who have come into close contact with an infected person will instead be advised to take a test as soon as possible. Officials are looking into removing the need for isolation after travelling abroad for fully vaccinated people, he said.
“Step by step, jab by jab, we’re replacing the temporary protection of restrictions with the long-term protection of vaccines,” he said.
Britain on Monday announced plans to scrap laws requiring face masks and physical distancing on July 19.
Javid, appointed late last month after Matt Hancock quit as health secretary, has underlined the importance of other health issues, economic problems and education challenges that have built up during the pandemic.
“We can’t live in a world where the only thing that we are thinking about is COVID — and not about all the other health problems, our economic problems, our education challenges,” Javid told Sky News. “We have to make use of a vaccine that is thankfully working.”
Critics say Johnson and Javid have abandoned a pledge to take a cautious approach to lifting restrictions.
Javid said that by the time restrictions are lifted on July 19, there could be 50,000 COVID-19 cases a day — double current rates — and that cases “could go as high as 100,000.”
-From Reuters and The Associated Press, last updated at 2:31 p.m. ET
What’s happening across Canada
As of 10:45 p.m. ET on Tuesday, Canada had reported 1,418,091 confirmed cases of COVID-19, with 5,479 considered active. National deaths stand at 26,381. More than 40.1 million COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered so far across the country.
In Quebec, health officials reported no additional deaths on Tuesday and 67 new cases of COVID-19.
Ontario, meanwhile, reported nine additional deaths on Tuesday and 244 cases of COVID-19, though Health Minister Christine Elliott noted 164 of the cases were new.
British Columbia reported no deaths on Tuesday and 46 new COVID-19 cases.
In Alberta, health officials on Tuesday said there were 33 new cases, two deaths and 99 recoveries.
Calgary Stampede officials have promised robust safety measures, including proof of vaccination at one popular venue, when the 10-day festival starts this week.
In the Prairies on Tuesday, Manitoba reported 34 net-new cases, one death and 83 recoveries. Saskatchewan reported 14 new cases, one death and 60 recoveries.
In Atlantic Canada on Tuesday, Nova Scotia reported seven new cases of COVID-19, and Prince Edward Island reported one new case. There were no new cases reported in New Brunswick or Newfoundland and Labrador.
Across the North on Tuesday, Yukon reported 10 new cases and no new deaths. In Nunavut and the Northwest Territories, there were no new cases reported.
-From CBC News and The Canadian Press, last updated at 10:45 p.m. ET
What’s happening around the world
As of early Tuesday morning, more than 184.1 million cases of COVID-19 had been reported around the world, according to a tracker from Johns Hopkins University. The reported global death toll stood at more than 3.9 million.
In Russia, cases have hit another daily record, with authorities reporting 737 more fatalities amid a rapid rise in infections with 23,378 new cases. The daily tally of confirmed infections has more than doubled in the past month, however there are no plans to impose another lockdown.
In the Middle East, Israel will deliver about 700,000 expiring doses of Pfizer-BioNTech’s vaccine to South Korea this month, and South Korea will give Israel back the same number, already on order from Pfizer, in September and October.
In the Americas, Pfizer will reduce deliveries of its COVID-19 vaccine to Mexico for two weeks due to renovations at a Pfizer plant in the United States, Mexican deputy health minister Hugo Lopez-Gatell said on Tuesday.
Brazil’s government extended its emergency cash transfer program to poor families during the pandemic for another three months from August.
In the Asia-Pacific region, Indonesia has prepared backup medical facilities for a worst-case scenario where daily infections reach 40,000 to 50,000, a senior official said, as the country battles its fastest-spreading outbreak.
Struggling to contain an outbreak of the highly transmissible delta variant, Fiji reported a record 636 infections and six deaths on Tuesday, with the mortuary at the Pacific island’s main hospital filled to capacity.
The premier of Australia’s New South Wales state said she aims to decide within the next 24 hours whether to extend a COVID-19 lockdown in Sydney.
In Europe, Luxembourg’s Prime Minister Xavier Bettel is in serious but stable condition after contracting COVID-19 and will remain in hospital for the time being, the government said.
Coronavirus deaths in Russia have hit another daily record, with authorities reporting 737 more fatalities amid a rapid rise in infections. Russia’s coronavirus task force on Tuesday reported 23,378 new coronavirus cases. The daily tally of confirmed infections has more than doubled in the past month, soaring from around 9,000 in early June to over 23,000 this week.
Despite the surge, the Kremlin has said there are no plans to impose another lockdown. Russia had one nationwide lockdown in the spring of 2020 that lasted six weeks, and the government has since resisted shutting down businesses.
The coronavirus task force has reported over 5.6 million confirmed coronavirus cases and a total of 139,316 deaths during the pandemic. The actual mortality rate is believed to be higher.
In Africa, South Africa reported 12,513 new cases of COVID-19 and 331 additional deaths. The country is currently in a lockdown as it tries to slow transmission of the virus.
-From The Associated Press, Reuters and CBC News, last updated at 1:39 p.m. ET
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