A coronavirus treatment already approved in the UK and US which uses blood from recovered patients can help the infected get better within three days, a study has found.
This is coming as the global infection passed 1.4million on Tuesday with 81,049 deaths and 300,759 recoveries.
The efficacy of the new breakthrough treatment was highlighted with 10 COVID-19 patients in China who were severely ill in hospital and saw their symptoms disappear or rapidly improve within 72 hours after the therapy.
They were given a dose of plasma donated from COVID-19 survivors, which had the antibodies necessary for their immune system to clear the virus.
Known as convalescent plasma therapy, it has recently been given the green light by medical regulators in the UK and US to try on critically ill coronavirus patients. The promising therapy, which was first used a century ago in the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic, has been used already in China and the US.
US records 1,150 deaths in 24 hours
The US recorded 1,150 coronavirus deaths in 24 hours, Johns Hopkins University said late Monday, pushing the country’s toll further above the 10,000 mark reached earlier in the day.
According to Johns Hopkins’ running tally, there are more than 366,000 cases of new coronavirus in the United States — including in excess of 30,000 new cases in 24 hours — with total deaths at 10,783.
The US has by far the most number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the world. The number of deaths recorded since the start of the pandemic has for the past several days increased by at least 1,000 per day and is gradually approaching the number of deaths in Italy (16,523) and Spain (13,005).
France death toll tops 10,000
France has become the fourth country to register more than 10,000 deaths of coronavirus patients, with 7,091 recorded in hospital and 3,237 in old age homes, according to a government official.
A total of 7,131 people were being treated in intensive care, top health official Jerome Salomon told reporters, warning that “the epidemic is continuing its progression.”
Italy, Spain and the United States are the other three countries to have recorded more than 10,000 deaths of coronavirus patients.
Patient gives birth in isolation ward
A woman undergoing treatment for coronavirus in an isolation ward in Cameroon’s capital, Yaoundé, gave birth to a baby girl over the weekend, a doctor at the hospital has told the BBC.
The mother, 19-year-old Marie, gave birth normally but has since been separated from her newborn baby.
The patient was connected to an oxygen supply when her contractions started.
“We just arranged the room and she delivered on her bed while on oxygen,” Dr Yaneu Ngaha Bondja Junie, a gynaecologist at the Yaoundé Central Hospital, told the BBC.
The baby was born prematurely weighing 2.1kg (4.6lb) and is in the neonatal unit. It is not clear if the baby is infected as her tests are still being processed, but she is being fed with breast milk from her mother.
World leaders wish Johnson quick recovery
Several world leaders yesterday sent a quick recovery wishes to the UK Prime Minister, Boris Johnson who is still been kept in an intensive care after his condition deteriorated.
French President Emmanuel Macron gave his “full support to Boris Johnson, his family and the British people at this difficult time”. “I hope he will rapidly overcome this ordeal,” tweeted.
Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez tweeted: “My solidarity and wishes for a speedy recovery for Prime Minister Boris Johnson. These are difficult days for our countries, but it is through strength and unity that we can win this battle.”
World Health Organization chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said he was “thinking of my friend Boris Johnson tonight, and sending my and WHO’s heartfelt good wishes as he battles the coronavirus.” “I know the NHS and its dedicated health workers will be looking after you,” he tweeted.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, whose wife tested positive last month also wished Johnson a full and speedy recovery. “My thoughts are with you and your family right now. Hope to see you back at Number 10 soon,” he tweeted.
President Muhammadu Buhari also sent a solidarity message to the British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson. President Buhari in the solidarity message prayed that Prime Minister Johnson should get well soon.
“On behalf of the government and people of Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari wishes Prime Minister Boris Johnson a quick recovery and restoration to full health,” Buhari said in a statement.
Over 3,000 health workers infected globally
More than 3,000 health workers have been infected since the outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has said.
Tedros Ghebreyesus, the WHO Director-General, in a series of tweets on Tuesday to mark the 2020 World Health Day, said many other health workers had paid the ultimate price in the fight against the virus.
“When health workers are exposed or become sick, they have to go home and stay there for at least two weeks. Hospitals scramble to find replacements,” Dr Ghebreyesus said.
He added, “That’s why we must ensure that health workers have the medical masks and other personal protective equipment they need.”
10 newborns infected at Romanian hospital
A Romanian maternity unit was being investigated on Tuesday after 10 newborns tested positive for the novel coronavirus, with the suspicion they contracted the virus from healthcare staff.
“The mothers tested negative, but the babies tested positive so we have to consider their contacts with medical staff,” Health Minister Nelu Tataru said in an interview with the Antena 3 TV station. The babies have no symptoms and all but one of them, together with their mothers, have gone into self-isolation at home. Tataru pointed to the “failures in the activities of both maternity officials and the local public health directorate (DSP)” and promised severe measures if necessary. The local DSP chief has already been dismissed.
Saudi Arabia expects 200,000 cases
Saudi Arabia’s health minister on Tuesday warned of a huge spike in coronavirus cases of up to 200,000 within weeks, state media reported.
The warning comes a day after the kingdom extended the duration of daily curfews in multiple cities, including the capital Riyadh, to 24 hours in a bid to limit the spread of the deadly virus.
“Within the next few weeks, studies predict the number of infections will range from a minimum of 10,000 to a maximum of 200,000,” the official Saudi Press Agency reported, citing health minister Tawfiq al-Rabiah.
Rabiah, who warned the kingdom faces a “critical moment” in the fight against the virus, said the projection was based on four studies by Saudi and international experts.
Saudi Arabia has so far reported a total of 2,795 infections and 41 deaths from the disease, according to the latest tally released by the health ministry on Tuesday.
Chad’s ex-ruler Habre granted leave from prison
Besides the coronavirus patient issue, Chad’s former ruler Hissene Habre has been granted two months leave from prison in Senegal, where he is serving life for crimes against humanity.
The prison is being used to hold new detainees in coronavirus quarantine.
Habre was convicted of crimes against humanity in 2016 and sentenced to life in prison at a landmark trial in Senegal. He was convicted of rape, sexual slavery and ordering killings during his rule from 1982 to 1990.
He denied accusations that he ordered the killing of 40,000 people during his rule.
It was the first time an African Union-backed court had tried a former ruler for human rights abuses.
AFP news agency reports that his lawyer had requested 60 days leave for the ex-president because he was “particularly vulnerable” to coronavirus, according to the judge’s order.