New Delhi: The novel coronavirus pandemic continues to devastate countries across the world — the latest count being over 3.3 crore cases and more than 10 lakh deaths.
Mexico, which is testing very little, increased the ‘estimated’ number of Covid cases and deaths. Overworked and underpaid doctors in Spain staged a sleep-in protest and Disney laid off 28,000 theme park employees in the US.
ThePrint brings you the most important global stories on the coronavirus pandemic and why they matter.
Mexico increases its estimated Covid-19 cases by 1,37,000
Mexico has increased the “estimated” number of Covid-19 cases by 1,37,000 and deaths by 89,612 Monday, reports Associated Press.
Officials in the country had earlier admitted that the fatality data was a significant undercount since the country was testing very little.
The report highlights that the estimated increase was calculated by the Health Department which added two groups: “Those who never were tested but had symptoms, and those who had tests which could not be analysed because the samples were not handled properly”.
“Officials revealed Sunday that almost 96,000 test swabs — had to be thrown out because they never reached a lab, arrived too late or were not preserved in the right conditions to be tested,” AP adds.
Mexico has reported 7,38,163 cases and 77,163 deaths, till now.
Stretched to the limit, Spanish medics demand better conditions
Overworked and underpaid, healthcare workers took to the streets in Spain’s Barcelona demanding better working conditions Tuesday, reports Reuters.
The report quotes a medical resident intern named Clara Boter, who said that the healthcare staff had been clocking in 80 hours a week but were earning only for half the number of hours.
The protesters also staged a sleep-in, in the city’s busy intersection of Plaza de Espana.
As of Wednesday, Spain has reported 7,58,172 cases and 31,614 deaths.
Disney lays off 28,000 as coronavirus devastates theme-park business
Disney Tuesday laid off 28,000 people across several theme parks in the US, reports the Washington Post.
The report highlights that 14 per cent of the total workforce employed by the US theme parks were laid off by the multibillion-dollar conglomerate.
Chairman of Disney’s theme park unit, Josh D’Amaro was quoted as saying , “As heartbreaking as it is to take this action, this is the only feasible option we have in light of the prolonged impact of COVID-19 on our business”.
Earlier this year, at the height of the lockdown, the company had furloughed 1,00,000 employees worldwide.
The US has reported 74,06,146 cases and 2,10,785 deaths. It is the worst-affected country in the world.
No pay rise for Hong Kong’s domestic helpers in coming year
The Hong Kong government has revealed that 3.7 lakh domestic helpers in the country will not be getting a pay rise in the coming year, reports South China Morning Post.
The pay freeze decision, which is being criticised, was made keeping in mind the dismal economic outlook due to the pandemic.
The report quotes the spokesperson of the Asian Migrants’ Coordinating Body saying, “Helpers should have had a pay rise because their workloads had increased during the coronavirus pandemic.”
Last year, the government, in their yearly review, had increased the helpers’ salaries by 2.4 per cent.
Under government rules, to hire a foreign domestic helper, the employer must have a monthly household income of at least HK$15,000 (US$1,900) or assets of a comparable amount to support the expenses for a full two-year contract period.
Hong Kong has reported 5,080 cases and 105 deaths.
Life returning to normal in Africa, but virus fears linger
Several countries across Africa are easing their Covid-19 restrictions but health experts warn that being complacent at this point may be dangerous for the countries, reports Agence France-Presse (AFP).
In Soweto, several celebrated in the popular The Black and White Lifestyle pub while the South African government transitioned to the lowest level of lockdown
According to the report, however, in the rest of the continent, “daily life varies vastly between strict observance of health measures and total relaxation”.
For instance in Ivory Coast, President Alassane Ouattara had last week remarked, “We don’t care about corona” when kissing a party official on the mouth. DR Congo, however, is still sticking to thermal scanning and constant sanitisation.
Africa reported 1,480,934 cases and 35,729 deaths, it has managed the pandemic relatively well.
What else we are reading:
In Spain, undocumented migrants face red tape to get tested for Covid-19: El País
‘Super Healthy’ College Student Dies of Rare Covid-19 Complications: The New York Times