Global coronavirus cases surpassed 18 million as the pandemic is now adding a million infections every four days, prompting more lockdowns.
Australia’s Victoria state tightened restrictions and declared a state of disaster, while the Philippines reimposed a lockdown in Manila. Vietnam will test all residents of Danang as an outbreak threatens to widen. Boris Johnson is considering sealing off Greater London, according to news reports.
White House coronavirus task force head Deborah Birx said the pandemic is in a new phase as it spreads across US rural and urban areas. India’s home minister tested positive.
Key Developments Global Tracker
Global cases top 18 million; deaths pass 688,000 Facing fierce new waves, virus hunters turn to sewage and drones. When it comes to Covid vaccines, rich nations are first in line Japan acted like the virus had gone. Now its spread everywhere Decline of Singapore’s famed shopping strip shows city’s pain.
Subscribe to a daily update on the virus from Bloomberg’s Prognosis team here. Click CVID on the terminal for global data on coronavirus cases and deaths.
Capital of Vietnam Coffee Province Tightens Rules (10:44 a.m. HK)
The capital of Dak Lak province in Vietnam’s coffee-producing Central Highlands is under a 14-day stay-at-home order as the country grapples with a sudden novel coronavirus outbreak that started late last month in the central coastal city of Danang, according to the provincial governments website.
Vietnam will test all residents of Danang, a city with 1.1 million people, Tuoi Tre newspaper reported, as the risk of a widening spread increases.
New Zealand-Australia Travel Bubble Delayed (10:04 a.m. HK)
New Zealand will not be proceeding with a quarantine-free travel zone with Australia any time soon as a coronavirus outbreak spreads in the State of Victoria, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said.
It will be on the back burner for several months, she told Newshub’s AM Show on Monday. One of our criteria is anywhere where we have quarantine-free travel they have to be free of community transmission for a period of time, 28 days. It is going to take a long time for Australia to get back to that place.
Singapore to Require Some Travellers to Wear Monitors (9:31 a.m. HK)
Singapore will require some incoming travellers who are serving their 14-day stay-home notices outside of dedicated facilities to wear an electronic monitoring device to ensure compliance. The rule will come into effect August 10 and will apply to Singapore citizens, permanent residents, long-term pass holders and work pass holders, the government said.
UK Buys Fast Tests in Readiness for Resurgence (7:19 a.m. HK)
Boris Johnson’s government signed deals for quick-turnaround tests for Covid-19 as the UK prepares for a winter resurgence of the disease amid criticism its initial response to the crisis was too slow.
Millions of the tests, which can give results in 90 minutes and check for flu and other viruses, will be sent to hospitals and care homes, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said Monday.
Australia Braces for Economic Hit (5:25 p.m. NY)
Victoria, Australia’s second-most populous region, is getting a massive kick in the guts to its economy from a statewide lockdown, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said. The full impact depends on which industries and business will be allowed to stay open, he said.
The State government expanded restrictions on Sunday after three weeks of lockdown in Melbourne, Victoria’s capital, failed to abate the outbreak in the city of 5 million people. Melbourne also was slapped with an overnight curfew. The measures are in force for six weeks.
USFDA Fastracks RLF-100 (aviptadil)
NeuroRx and Relief Therapeutics announced that RLF-100 (aviptadil) showed rapid recovery from respiratory failure in the most critically ill patients with Covid-19.
The US Food and Drug Administration has given fast-track status to RLF-100. NeuroRx CEO Jonathan Javitt said in a statement the company is conducting placebo-controlled trials to see whether the observations made in the case-control and open-label studies will be confirmed for less ill patients with Covid-19-related respiratory failure.
Gottlieb Advocates Masks, Targeted Mitigation (4:07 p.m. NY)
Former Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said he hopes the combination of masks with some targeted mitigation is enough to keep Covid-19 cases down in the US. He proposed that approach as a happy medium between strict lockdowns and unchecked spread.
Its going to be hard to keep the virus out, Gottlieb said on CBS. Were likely to see this continue, where there will be these epidemics in different parts of the country, and compensatory action to get it under control.
Even as cases ebb in the Sun Belt, infection rates are picking up in the Midwest. Across the country, probably one in 70 individuals right now are actively infected, he said.
Asked to reach for a note of optimism, Gottlieb said it looks like the U.S. flu season this fall and winter will be less harsh than expected.
California’s Rise Exceeds 14-Day Average (2:10 p.m. NY)
California reported 9,032 new cases, an increase thats bigger than the trailing 14-day average of 8,891. Cases rose to 509,162 after the Golden States number of infections crossed 500,000 on Saturday. Another 132 new deaths were reported, bringing the total to 9,356.
Forget Hydroxychloroquine, Says White House Testing Czar (11:54 a.m. NY)
There is no evidence that hydroxychloroquine, a malaria drug frequently touted by President Donald Trump, is an effective treatment for Covid-19, a member of the White House coronavirus task force said.
There’s been five randomised control, placebo controlled trials that do not show any benefit to hydroxychloroquine, Admiral Brett Giroir, assistant secretary for Health at the Department of Health and Human Services, said on NBCs Meet the Press.
We need to move on from that and talk about what is effective, said Giroir.
Pelosi Doesnt Trust Birx on Virus (11:26 am NY)
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she doesn’t trust information on the pandemic from the head of the White Houses coronavirus task force, the latest political skirmish over the U.S. virus response.
Trump has been spreading disinformation about the virus and Deborah Birx is his appointee so I don’t have confidence there, no, Pelosi said on ABCs This Week.
Birx Sees New Phase in US Outbreak (9:15 a.m. NY)
White House coronavirus task force coordinator Deborah Birx cautioned Americans to take the virus seriously, saying its extraordinarily widespread across rural and urban areas. We are in a new phase, said on CNN’s State of the Union.
America is on the move during the summer vacation season and people need to recognize the risks, including protecting vulnerable people when they come home, Birx said.
We need all of the public to help us get control of this virus, she said. We definitely need to take more precautions.