The European Union says it now has enough doses to meet its goal of vaccinating 70 per cent of the region’s adult population by the end of this month.
With infections resurging in many countries in Europe, the next challenge will be ensuring that the doses find takers, as demand wanes in some areas. According to the European Centre for Disease Control (ECDC), 44 per cent of the adult EU population is fully vaccinated, and 64 per cent have received at least one dose.
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said Saturday that by Sunday, 500 million doses will have been delivered to all regions of the 27-nation EU. She urged member countries to “do everything to increase vaccinations.”
So far EU countries have administered 386 million doses for the overall population of 447 million, according to the ECDC.
Meanwhile, outside the EU, coronavirus deaths in Russia have hit another daily record, with authorities reporting 752 more fatalities amid a continuing surge in infections.
Officials have attributed a steady rise in infections and an increase in mortality to the spread of the delta variant.
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 resisted another one to avoid damaging the economy.
The coronavirus task force has reported more than 5.7 million confirmed coronavirus cases and a total of 142,253 deaths in the pandemic.
However, reports by Russia’s state statistical service Rosstat — which tallies coronavirus-linked deaths retroactively — reveal much higher numbers.
What’s happening across Canada
As of 8:30 p.m. ET on Saturday, Canada had reported 1,420,279 confirmed cases of COVID-19, with 5,415 considered active. National deaths stood at 26,428. More than 41.8 million COVID-19 vaccine doses have been administered so far across the country, according to CBC’s vaccine tracker.
In British Columbia, residents of long-term care facilities will be allowed to visit with friends and family members without restrictions, provided they are fully vaccinated, starting July 19.
In Alberta, public health officials have reported the province’s first two cases of the lambda variant. Both were travel-related.
Saskatchewan, which logged 42 new COVID-19 cases and an additional death on Saturday, is set to lift more restrictions on Sunday. That means dropping requirements for masking and physical distancing in community spaces.
Because so many have done their part by rolling up their sleeves & sticking it to COVID, we are able to share some great news.<br><br>On July 11, all public health orders will be lifted, including mandatory masking & gathering size limits.<br><br>Let’s all enjoy a great Saskatchewan summer! <a href=”https://t.co/1Fi6vUmajx”>pic.twitter.com/1Fi6vUmajx</a>
In Manitoba, there were are 87 new cases reported on Saturday, according to the province’s online dashboard, while deaths remained unchanged.
Ontario logged just 179 new cases, the fewest on a single day since Sept. 6, 2020. The province also reported eight new deaths.
In Quebec, the provincial government’s proposal to implement a vaccine passport has raised privacy and discrimination concerns from experts.
In the Atlantic region, New Brunswick, which recorded no new cases for the fifth straight day, is inching closer to half of the province’s eligible population being fully vaccinated; Prince Edward Island has reduced COVID-19 border testing and dropped its mask mandate; more than 80 per cent of eligible Newfoundland and Labrador residents had received at least one dose, and slightly more than 28 per cent received two doses; and Nova Scotia added just one new case on Saturday.
In the North, Yukon reported six new infections on Friday. It brings the territory’s active case count to 116, with the location of the new cases not yet confirmed, according to a news release from Dr. Brendan Hanley, Yukon’s chief medical officer of health.
What’s happening around the world
As of Saturday, more than 186.2 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 four million.
PHOTOS | Indonesia short on oxygen, seeks help amid COVID-19 spike:
In Asia, Indonesia, the world’s fourth-most populous country, is running out of oxygen as it endures a devastating wave of coronavirus cases and the government is seeking emergency supplies from other countries, including Singapore and China.
In the Americas, U.S. health officials say vaccinated teachers and students don’t need to wear masks inside school buildings.
In Africa, countries on the continent are expected to receive vaccine doses in the coming weeks through the African Union’s African Vaccine Acquisition Task Team, according to the African Centres for Disease Control and Prevention.