Coronavirus: scientists believe that the death rate in the world is halved; Bees sniff out Covid-19

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Coronavirus: scientists believe that the death rate in the world is halved; Bees sniff out Covid-19

American scientists said that the statistics of deaths from Covid-19 in the world are underestimated by half, and experts from the Netherlands have taught bees to identify patients with coronavirus by smell. Meanwhile, Germany announced that it has managed to overcome the third wave of morbidity, and in India, one of the most affected countries in the world, on the contrary, they predict a significant worsening of the situation.

This and other news about the situation with the Covid-19 pandemic in the world is in our review.

According to Johns Hopkins University, which uses official information from around the world in its calculations, 156 million people were ill with the coronavirus during the pandemic and more than 3.2 million died.

However, scientists from the University of Washington published a study according to which the total mortality statistics in the world are twice the official one, that is, the number of deaths is almost universally calculated incorrectly. The scientific work claims that the total number of people who have died from Covid-19 is at least 6.9 million.

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For example, the United States has reported more than 570,000 deaths since March last year, but in fact there are about 900,000, according to the University of Washington. The real statistics in India is almost three times higher than the official one, and in Russia not 109 thousand people died, as officially reported, but 593 thousand, according to American scientists.

According to Rosstat, from April 2020 to March 2021, 248.5 thousand people with a diagnosis of Covid-19 died in Russia. This is more than two times more than the official data on the website show. However, according to independent researchers, excess mortality (that is, the excess of this year's statistics over the usual seasonal mortality of previous years) in Russia during this period amounted to about 500 thousand people.

  • Mortality in Russia in March increased by 25%. Almost 24 thousand people died with covid

In some countries, such as India, shortcomings are due to weak control systems, especially in rural areas. In other countries, underestimated data are provided deliberately, according to the study authors.

“Many countries have done their best to establish the number of victims of the pandemic, but our analysis shows how difficult it is to get accurate data on a new and rapidly spreading infectious disease,” says Chris Murray, director of the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME ) at the University of Washington. “We hope the current report will force governments around the world to fill in the gaps in the death toll from Covid-19, which will allow better allocation of resources to combat the pandemic.”

Scientists obtained their figures by comparing the average number of expected deaths from any cause in the pre-pandemic period with the actual number of deaths during the crisis.

The resulting values excluded deaths not directly related to the pandemic (that is, those who died from concomitant diseases, as well as those who did not seek medical help), and deaths in road accidents, which became less due to the need to stay at home.

Indian scientists: it will get worse

In India, over the past day, 414 thousand people were infected with the coronavirus, almost 4 thousand died. The most affected areas are Delhi and the entire territory of the state of West Bengal. However, according to the capital's doctors, coping with the disaster became a little easier, as hospitals began to receive sufficient supplies of oxygen.

Coronavirus: scientists believe that the death rate in the world is halved; Bees sniff out Covid-19

“We have run out of vaccines for today,” reads the inscription at the vaccination point.

“At the moment, our daily needs are being met, but how long it will last, no one knows, so we have no great hopes,” said Ashvin Sigh, the head physician of one of the Delhi hospitals.

The supply of oxygen, equipment and medicines was made possible by international efforts. Around a dozen countries, including Britain, the United States, France and South Korea, send humanitarian aid to India.

At the same time, scientific advisers to the Indian government are making bleak predictions for the future. In their opinion, the concentration of the virus is so high that the emergence of new strains is not even a matter of time, but a reality that has simply not manifested itself in any way.

The head of the academic council under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s cabinet warns that after a slight recession, the country will face another brutal wave of morbidity.

Germany celebrates victory over the third wave

Residents of Germany who have completed the full course of vaccinations will be exempt from most lockdown rules and restrictions. The same applies to those who have recovered from the coronavirus. The corresponding resolution was adopted on Friday by the upper house of the German parliament.

Coronavirus: scientists believe that the death rate in the world is halved; Bees sniff out Covid-19

During the third wave in Germany, such “coronavirus” were actively used – mobile laboratories for testing for coronavirus

“The third wave of the epidemic seems to have been overcome,” said German Health Minister Jens Spahn. According to the Robert Koch University, which monitors the epidemiological situation, the incidence of coronavirus has declined in all age groups.

The first dose of the vaccine has already been received by 31.5% of the adult population in Germany. To speed up the vaccination campaign the day before, Spahn authorized the use of the drug produced by AstraZeneca for everyone, without exception. Previously, the British vaccine was not used in the group of people over 65 years old.

You can forget about Australia for a long time

Australia's trade and tourism minister said Friday that the continent will not open to tourists until the end of 2022. The only exceptions are residents of New Zealand, communication with this country was resumed almost in full a month ago.

Coronavirus: scientists believe that the death rate in the world is halved; Bees sniff out Covid-19

Are you dreaming of visiting Australia? Keep on dreaming …

The Australian authorities are pleased with the results of the fight against the pandemic and the progress of vaccination of the population, but the opening of the borders is considered premature. According to the government, the example of India clearly shows that the acute phase of the pandemic has not passed everywhere in the world.

Also on the eve of the WHO warned that the third wave of coronavirus threatens Africa – due to the emergence of new strains and delays in the supply of the vaccine.

“It is not necessary that the tragedy of India will repeat itself in Africa, but we must all be on the alert,” said Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa.

Young Britons won't get AstraZeneca

The Scientific Council overseeing vaccinations and immunizations in Britain has ruled that Britons under 40 should be offered an alternative to the AstraZeneca vaccine whenever possible due to the risk of blood clots. Scientists emphasize that this is an extremely rare side effect of the British drug, but the authorities must take into account the existing risks.

A spokesman for the British Ministry of Health said that the opinion of scientists was taken into account, but recalled that the benefits of the Oxford vaccine are still many times greater than the possible deviations.

However, statistics on risks are growing noticeably. According to data for the last week, it was 10.5 cases per million doses of the drug, last week this figure was 9.3 cases per million doses.

Pre-Olympic Tokyo in emergency mode

On Friday, the Tokyo authorities extended the state of emergency until the end of the month, initially it was supposed to end on May 11. There is less and less time left until the opening of the Summer Olympic Games on 23 July. In June, the government promises to decide whether spectators will be able to attend the competition.

The question of foreign fans has disappeared by itself, as Japan is not going to open the borders to mass tourism, but the Japanese still hope to watch the home Olympics from the stands of the stadiums.

Coronavirus: scientists believe that the death rate in the world is halved; Bees sniff out Covid-19

The Olympic flame has already arrived in Japan, but the state of emergency remains there

The mortality rate from Covid-19 in Japan remains one of the lowest in the world (10.5 thousand deaths during the entire pandemic), but vaccination of the population is progressing extremely slowly and the infection rate remains high. Hospitals in some parts of the country are again complaining of a lack of space.

Due to the pandemic in Tokyo, almost all test events that are usually held on the eve of the Olympics to check Olympic facilities have been canceled, postponed or moved to other countries. The only competitions that have been held in the future Olympic capital are the World Diving Championships and the qualifying races of rowers.

Due to the recent surge in the incidence of diseases, the organizers of the Games have made changes to the route of the Olympic torch relay, which, where possible, will bypass settlements. Also, the oldest inhabitant of the Earth, 118-year-old Kane Tanaka, refused to participate in the relay. She had to travel a short section of the way with a torch in a wheelchair, but her family said that this will not happen, as the epidemic is still not under control.

Trained bees detect coronavirus in seconds

Scientists at the Wageningen University in the Netherlands have been able to teach bees to detect Covid-19. True, they were trained on minks, and not on humans, but bees, possessing an excellent scent, learned in a matter of seconds to distinguish sick animals from healthy ones.

Coronavirus: scientists believe that the death rate in the world is halved; Bees sniff out Covid-19

The bees were trained like Pavlov's notorious dogs, using sweetened water as a reward. As a result, each time they sensed a virus, they stuck out their proboscis together in anticipation of a reward.

In building their experiment, the researchers proceeded from the assumption that the bees should feel the change in smell as the metabolism in the organism affected by the virus changes.

Yet scientists do not undertake to claim that animals or insects can replace a real laboratory. Another thing is that their skill can be very useful where access to such laboratories is limited or none at all.

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