Families of frontline workers who died of Covid-19 struggle to get insurance money: Ambika P K, a 46-year-old nurse working in a private hospital in Delhi, died on May 25, days after she tested positive for Covid-19. But her children are struggling to claim the Rs50 lakh insurance promised from the central government. The reason: they cannot prove Ambika was involved in the treatment of Covid-19 patients and even the hospital has refused to certify that. This is not a standalone case. Read more here
Covid-19 cases growing fastest in India among worst-affected countries: Analysis Despite having the world’s third-highest caseload, India’s cases are growing faster among the 10 worst-affected countries. In fact, India has one of the world’s highest growth rates in cases; just 18 countries out of nearly 200 are growing faster, but all of them (except Argentina with 150,000 cases) have only a few hundred or few thousand cases. In the worst-affected US, cases are doubling in 40 days, while in Brazil, they are taking 36 days. In India, cases are doubling in 19 days. Read more here
‘Vaccine nationalism’ threatens global plan to distribute Covid-19 shots fairly: As soon as the first Covid-19 vaccines get approved, a staggering global need will confront limited supplies. Many health experts say it is clear who should get the first shots: health care workers around the world, then people at a higher risk of severe disease, then those in areas where the disease is spreading rapidly, and finally, the rest of us. Read more here
How can Indian schools make up for the lost time: The learning gain from a year’s worth of schooling can be managed in three months if there is a strong focus on foundational skills, said Rukmini Banerji, CEO, Pratham Educational Foundation, which works with schools in UP. Schools, when they reopen, must focus on foundational skills among children – basic reading and arithmetic – to make up for the learning loss, in an approach that classifies students according to their reading and mathematics skills, not age. Read more here
India's gloomy outlook darkens: Reuters survey The Indian economy is now likely to contract this quarter and next and in this fiscal year as a whole, according to a Reuters poll of nearly 60 economists.
Growth had been expected for all of those periods. “India’s failure to contain the spread of the coronavirus, and the government’s underwhelming support package for firms and households, means the economy will suffer its largest drop in output on record this year,” said Darren Aw, Asia economist at Capital Economics in Singapore. Read more here
Geographical spread of virus poses new policy challenges: What explains the rural recovery? Understanding this is important to understand its sustainability. The shift of the population may have helped. Reverse migration has meant a nearly 5 per cent lower urban population hurting demand and activity in essential goods and services, and boosting them in rural areas. Other commonly cited reasons are a strong rabi harvest and rural-focused government spending. But as we will see, the net impact is too small in magnitude to explain the revival. Read comments by Credit Suisse’s India Strategist Neelkanth Mishra.
The advantages of mRNA Vaccine for Covid-19?
The premise of any vaccine is to induce a long-lived immune “memory” in the form of B and T cells. Upon any encounter with a pathogen (which can be bacteria or viruses), these cells will recognise the danger and fight it off by destroying the pathogen and pathogen-infected cells. Read more here
Beware of fake N95 Masks, government says they may be detrimental to health: The Indian government has also made the use of masks mandatory in public places. Last week, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare issued a notice warning against the use of N95 masks with valves. The advisory stated that using N95 masks with valves can defeat the purpose. Check the video here
The latest on vaccine development: 25 candidate vaccines in human trials and five in Stage-III trials. Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine to carry out Stage-II an Stage-III simultaneously, 139 candidates in pre-clinical trial stage. Two Indian candidates in Stage-I trials. Read more here