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The World Health Organization criticized China for not allowing a team of experts into the country to investigate the causes of the pandemic

US. Health officials announced that a new federal program would begin this week to distribute vaccines in pharmacies to high-risk groups, including the elderly and frontline workers

Experts fear that in the next few weeks the new and more contagious variant of Coronavirus B117 could explode in the United States and become the dominant variant, quickly overwhelming hospitals – as has happened in the UK

According to new studies, the new variant was more resistant to blocking measures in Great Britain In at least five U dozens of cases of the new variant have been discovered States: California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, and New YorkBut public health experts say there is still time to contain it – if only they could see it

Unfortunately, my colleague Carl Zimmer, US. does not have a nationwide system of screening the coronavirus genome for new mutations.A program like this could help deepen our understanding of the new variant, as well as other potentially more dangerous variants that may be on the horizon

It’s even more important in the US.Carl told me because the virus was so out of control, “The more mutations you have, the greater the chance it will turn into something dangerous,” he said

Currently, coronavirus genetic sequencing is being done through a patchwork of academic, government, and commercial laboratories and at an incredibly low rate of the roughly 14 million people who test positive each week, fewer than 3000 samples are sequenced Experts say the US. should sequence at least five times as many samples if the country wants to better understand the variant and identify new mutations

If a national surveillance program like the one in the UK were put in place, scientists could determine how widespread the variant is and pinpoint emerging trouble spots Public health officials could then warn the public and put in place better ways to contain them, e.g. B. use better masks, close schools, or put in place temporary bans (a spokesman for the new Biden administration told Carl it might be open to the idea of ​​a national program)

“We were already surprised by this mutant,” said Carl. “It’s been in this country for weeks and it’s now everywhere and we didn’t know. If there is another dangerous variant, we need to know when it will Otherwise, wait until half of your home is on fire before calling the fire department ”

For the second time this year, Arizona is the state with the highest rate of new virus cases in the USAS In the past week, the state has averaged more than 8000 cases recorded per day, more than twice as common as in summer

The hospital system is alarmingly thin and hundreds of health care workers are flown in from other states Medical experts say drastic measures – like rationing – may need to be considered soon Concurrently, Arizona is administering vaccines at one of the slowest rates in the country / p>

State public health experts say the virus has roared again due to the lax enforcement of some viral measures and the lack of public vigilance that could help contain the outbreak, Gov Doug Ducey, a Republican, has consistently denied requests for stricter restrictions like a nationwide mask mandate, canceling major sporting events, or stopping personal schooling this week after he was criticized this week after videos surfaced on social media of his son in crowded rooms dined and celebrated without a mask

Some Arizonans don’t believe virus restrictions are the solution, and also doubt the recent surge is a cause for concern. Francisco Sirvent, a Chandler-based attorney, started a Facebook group in April called Reopen Arizona, which is now has almost 500 members

“I think people go a little bit more for their lives and that’s probably why the spike happened,” he said, adding, “I really believe we need to develop herd immunity ”

With the positivity rate in New York City surpassing 9 percent, the debate about keeping schools open is heating up again

In France only about 7000 people vaccinated – a tiny fraction of the number in Germany (more than 316000) or in Italy (more than 178000)

In Columbus, Ohio, virus problems in the state of Ohio cause national soccer championship game to be postponed

Federal health officials said a serious allergic reaction called anaphylaxis from Pfizer / BioNTech was a “rare finding.” Of the nearly two million Americans who received the vaccine over a 10-day stretch last month, 21 experienced the reaction

After rumors flared up that President Trump might travel to Scotland later this month, the country’s leader said he would not be allowed

A northern California hospital fired 600 vaccine shots after a can freezer stopped working, the Los Angeles Times reports

A high-end Florida nursing home was offering coronavirus vaccines to its board members and those who donated heavily to the facility, reports the Washington Post

I started playing Dungeons and Dragons with my old college roommate in May, and it was a great way to keep in touch, meet new people, and socialize – all virtual.It was also a great creative place to be with My Characters can live out all of my social life dreams in the game Our fantasy world has a lot of terrible problems, but the ones that I don’t have to fight and fear for a few hours every week? Covid-19

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Ny times

World News – US – Coronavirus Briefing: What happened today

Source: https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/06/us/coronavirus-today.html