Latest Pandemics News

A pedestrian passes the perimeter fence of the Presbyterian Church in Bedfordview, Johannesburg South Africa, Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021. The fence is covered with ribbons to represent a person who has died in the COVID-19 pandemic. (AP Photo/Denis Farrell)

The Latest: South Africa cabinet minister dies from virus

Jan. 21, 2021 1:18 PM EST

JOHANNESBURG — South Africa’s president says Jackson Mthembu has died from the coronavirus, becoming the first cabinet minister to succumb to the disease. The 62-year-old Mthembu in recent months had been a central figure in communicating to the public the South African government’s response...

FILE- In this Tuesday Dec. 15, 2020, file photo, A skull is glued onto a traffic light on the near-empty Dam Square with the Royal Palace, seen center rear, in Amsterdam, Netherlands. The Dutch government said Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021, that it wants to impose a curfew as part of beefed-up restrictions to rein in the spread of new more contagious variants of the coronavirus that already accounts for at least one in every 10 Dutch infections.(AP Photo/Peter Dejong, File)

Dutch lawmakers back coronavirus curfew despite criticism

Jan. 21, 2021 12:57 PM EST

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — A majority of Dutch lawmakers backed the government’s planned curfew Thursday, despite fierce criticism from some opposition legislators. The four parties that make up the ruling coalition and several opposition parties backed a curfew from 9 p.m. to 4:30 a.m. —...

Pennsylvania passes 20K deaths from the coronavirus

Jan. 21, 2021 12:41 PM EST

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Pennsylvania has surpassed 20,000 deaths from the coronavirus, the state Department of Health reported Thursday. The department said another 260 people died from the virus, pushing the total past 20,120. Pennsylvania’s seven-day average of deaths reported hit its highest point...

The Ramlet al-Baida public beach is empty during a lockdown aimed at curbing the spread of the coronavirus, in Beirut Lebanon, Thursday, Jan. 21, 2021. Authorities on Thursday extended a nationwide lockdown by a week to Feb. 8 amid a steep rise in coronavirus deaths and infections that has overwhelmed the health care system. (AP Photo/Bilal Hussein)

Lebanon extends lockdown into February as virus numbers rise

Jan. 21, 2021 11:26 AM EST

BEIRUT (AP) — Authorities in Lebanon on Thursday extended a nationwide lockdown by a week, to Feb. 8, amid a steep rise in coronavirus deaths and infections that has overwhelmed the health care system. Despite increasing the number of hospital beds in the country of nearly 6 million, doctors and nurses...

A nurse sorts pharmacy supplies just delivered at a new field hospital set up in a sports hall in Lisbon, Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021. Portugal's new daily COVID-19 cases have jumped to more than 14,600 to set a new national record. The pandemic has gained momentum in Portugal since Christmas, when restrictions on gatherings and movement were eased for four days. (AP Photo/Armando Franca)

Portugal shuts schools, blames variant for COVID-19 surge

Jan. 21, 2021 10:28 AM EST

LISBON, Portugal (AP) — Portugal’s government on Thursday ordered the closure of schools for two weeks amid a surge in COVID-19 infections that the prime minister blamed on the rise of a more contagious variant. “The risk of this virus spreading through society has increased,” Prime...

President Joe Biden addresses the nation at the Celebrating America concert at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021, after his inauguration.. (Joshua Roberts/Pool photo via AP)

Biden to sign virus measures, requires mask use to travel

Jan. 21, 2021 10:19 AM EST

WASHINGTON (AP) — Deep in the deadliest coronavirus wave and facing worrisome new mutations, President Joe Biden will kick off his national COVID-19 strategy to ramp up vaccinations and testing, reopen schools and businesses and increase the use of masks — including a requirement that Americans...

FILE - In this Jan. 20, 2021, file photo, President Joe Biden leaves after attending a virtual swearing in ceremony of political appointees from the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington. The United States will resume funding for the World Health Organization and join its consortium aimed at sharing coronavirus vaccines fairly around the globe, Biden’s top adviser on the pandemic said Thursday, Jan. 21. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci, File)

Biden's US revives support for WHO, reversing Trump retreat

Jan. 21, 2021 8:38 AM EST

GENEVA (AP) — The United States will resume funding for the World Health Organization and join its consortium aimed at sharing coronavirus vaccines fairly around the globe, President Joe Biden’s top adviser on the pandemic said Thursday, renewing support for an agency that the Trump administration...

Smoke rises from the Serum Institute of India, the world's largest vaccine maker that is manufacturing the AstraZeneca/Oxford University vaccine for the coronavirus, in Pune, India, Thursday, Jan. 21, 2021. (AP Photo/Rafiq Maqbool)

5 killed in blaze at Indian producer of COVID-19 vaccine

Jan. 21, 2021 8:37 AM EST

PUNE, India (AP) — At least five people were killed in a fire that broke out Thursday at a building under construction at Serum Institute of India, the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer, officials said. The company said the blaze would not affect production of the COVID-19 vaccine. Murlidhar...

A singer performs at a nightclub in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Nov. 5, 2020. On Thursday, Jan 21, 2021, Dubai’s tourism authorities announced an immediate halt to all live music and shows at hotels and restaurants as coronavirus cases surged to unseen heights over recent weeks. The UAE also ordered the suspension of all non-urgent surgeries to deal with an influx of new COVID-19 patients. (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili)

Dubai halts live entertainment amid surge in virus cases

Jan. 21, 2021 7:58 AM EST

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Dubai's tourism department Thursday announced an immediate halt to all live entertainment at hotels and restaurants, a day after suspending non-urgent surgeries at hospitals to deal with an influx of COVID-19 patients. Both decisions come after months of Dubai promoting...

German Chancellor Angela Merkel sits in a car, leaving the Federal Press Conference building after a press conference on the current situation in Berlin, Germany, Thursday, Jan. 21, 2021. Topics included the decisions of the federal and state governments to combat the Corona pandemic, the Chancellor's upcoming virtual consultations with the heads of state and government of the European Union (EU), and relations with the United States following the inauguration of the new president. (Bernd von Jutrczenka/dpa via AP)

Germany's Merkel points to variant risk as infections drop

Jan. 21, 2021 7:55 AM EST

BERLIN (AP) — Germany is seeing a promising decline in new coronavirus infections, but must take "very seriously” the risk posed by a more contagious variant and will have to be cautious whenever it starts easing its lockdown, Chancellor Angela Merkel said Thursday. Merkel and Germany’s 16...