President Joe Biden’s administration plans to restrict travel between the U.S. and India beginning Tuesday due to a surge in COVID-19 cases in the country of 1.4 billion people.
India set another daily global record of new cases Saturday, with more than 400,000 new cases and 3,500 deaths, according to official totals experts suspect are undercounts. Less than 2% of the country is fully vaccinated, with just under 150 million doses administered.
With oxygen in short supply at medical facilities, patients are gasping for breath, and their families – overwhelmed by grief and helplessness – are running frantically to obtain oxygen themselves. This week, the U.S. sent supplies to the country, including rapid tests, N95 masks and oxygen cylinders.
On Saturday, 12 people, including a doctor, reportedly died at a hospital in India’s capital city after the facility ran out of medical oxygen. And in western India, 18 patients died and 31 others rescued in a fire in a COVID-19 hospital ward.
Also in the news:
►In countries that mark May 1 as International Labor Day, workers clamored Saturday for more labor protections and financial support in the midst of the pandemic that has impacted workplaces and economies.
►The World Health Organization gave the green light for emergency use to Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine. Many countries without their own advanced medical regulatory and assessment offices rely on the WHO listing to decide whether to use vaccines.