WHO Team Visits Wet Market Linked to First Coronavirus Cases

A team of World Health Organization scientists investigating the source of the coronavirus visited a wet market Sunday in Wuhan, China.A cluster of cases was linked to the Huanan Seafood Market when the coronavirus first emerged in Wuhan in late 2019. Since then, the coronavirus has infected more than 102 million people worldwide and killed more than 2.2 million.The scientists have already visited at least one of the hospitals in Wuhan that treated some of the first patients.”Just back from visit at Jinyintan hospital, that specialized in infectious diseases and was designated for treatment of the first cases in Wuhan,” Dutch virologist Marion Koopmans said on Twitter. “Stories quite similar to what I have heard from our ICU doctors.”Just back from visit at Jinyintan hospital, that specialised in infectious diseases and was designated for treatment of the first cases in Wuhan. Stories quite similar to what I have heard from our ICU doctors.— Marion Koopmans (@MarionKoopmans) January 30, 2021The scientists want to know where the virus originated, in what animal, and how it made its way into humans, something that could take years to figure out.The team is also planning to visit the Wuhan Institute of Virology and laboratories at state facilities such as the Wuhan Center for Disease Control, according to the Geneva-based WHO.The Associated Press reports that Israel has agreed to transfer 5,000 doses of coronavirus vaccine to the Palestinians for front-line medical workers. Israel has been criticized for not providing vaccines to the Palestinians before but says it is not responsible for them.In the U.S., the Associated Press has done an analysis of data from 17 states and two cities concerning the racial breakdown about who is receiving the COVID vaccine.“Black people in all places are getting inoculated at levels below their share of the general population, in some cases significantly below,” AP reported.That fact holds true, AP said, despite African Americans making up “an oversize percentage of the nation’s health care workers, who were put at the front of the line for shots when the campaign began in mid-December.”In North Carolina, Black people are just a scant 11% of the vaccine recipients even though they are 22% of the population and 26% of the health care workforce, AP found.In comparison, AP reported, “White people in North Carolina are 68% of the population and 82% of those vaccinated.”Meanwhile, The New York Times reported that Los Angeles County data has also revealed racial disparities in the COVID pandemic. The mostly Latino neighborhood of Pacoima, the Times said “has one of the highest case rates in the nation . . . roughly five times the rate of Covid-19 cases as much richer and whiter Santa Monica.”The U.S. remains the country with the most cases at more than 26 million, followed by India with 10.7 million and Brazil with 9.1 million, Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center said early Sunday.The Pentagon on Saturday announced it would delay a plan to vaccinate the 40 prisoners held at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, saying it needed to “review force protection protocols,” John Kirby, the Pentagon’s chief spokesman, said in a tweet.No Guantanamo detainees have been vaccinated. We’re pausing the plan to move forward, as we review force protection protocols. We remain committed to our obligations to keep our troops safe.— John Kirby (@PentagonPresSec) January 30, 2021The Pentagon has said it intends to vaccinate all the personnel who work at the detention center, or about 1,500 people. At that time, the vaccine would also be offered to the prisoners, none of whom have received a vaccination yet.The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that as of Saturday morning, nearly 50 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine had been distributed and nearly 30 million had been administered.The CDC said 24 million people had received one or more doses, and 5.3 million people had received a first dose.The total includes both the Moderna and the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines.



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