The European Office of the World Health Organization (WHO) points out the long-term effects of the corona pandemic on people’s mental health. It is not just the infections and the fear of such an infection that could hit the psyche, said the WHO regional office in Europe on Thursday. Everyone is affected in one way or another by the psychological effects of lockdowns and self-isolation, but also the consequences of unemployment, financial worries, social exclusion and other things.
“People in the European region are literally collapsing under the burden of Covid-19 and its consequences,” said WHO Regional Director Hans Kluge. The effects of the Corona crisis would have taken an enormous toll on people’s mental health and well-being.
At the same time, the pandemic offers countries an opportunity to rethink and reform their mental health care. “This is an opportunity that no country can afford to waste if we want to rebuild better and stronger,” said Kluge. Mental health and wellbeing should be seen as basic human rights. (07/22/2021)
France tightened corona rules again
From Wednesday onwards, stricter corona rules will apply in France. A negative corona test or proof of vaccination or recovery is required in the cinema, theater or museum. This applies as soon as more than 50 people come together. Head of state Emmanuel Macron announced the changes last week. According to the Official Journal, other events or locations such as trade fairs or certain sports facilities are also affected.
The country is currently facing a fourth corona wave, government spokesman Gabriel Attal said on Monday. This wave could rise “very high”, he warned. In the country with around 67 million people, well over half have received at least one vaccination.
From the beginning of August, proof will also be mandatory in the country for long-distance trains, bars, restaurants, shopping centers or hospitals. The government passed a law on this. An exact date for the change has not yet been set.
Number of corona infections in Tokyo rises to six-month high
Two days before the opening of the Olympic Games, Tokyo reports 1832 new infections within one day. That is 680 more cases than a week ago and the highest level since mid-January.
The significant increase is due to the delta variant. The virus is fueling public concerns about further spread. Experts had already warned before the opening ceremony for the Olympic Games on Friday that new infections could rise to over 3,000 within a day at the beginning of August during the Games. The situation could become “critical”. In surveys, a majority of the Japanese population had repeatedly spoken out in favor of a renewed postponement or cancellation of the games. However, the President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Thomas Bach said Japan “need not be concerned about security”.
1.5 million children have lost parents or caregivers
According to a study, around 1.1 million children worldwide have lost at least one parent or a grandparent who cared for them as a result of the corona pandemic. This extrapolation applies to the period from March 2020 to April 2021, report researchers working with Seth Flaxman from Imperial College in London in the journal “The Lancet”. If you add other older relatives living in the household, more than 1.5 million children would have lost a caregiver.
This is a significant, so far overlooked consequence of the pandemic, writes the US health authority NIH in a communication on the study. The analysis makes it clear that psychosocial and economic support for these children should play a central role in the response to this pandemic.
As a basis for the study, the researchers used, among other things, data on the birth rate and corona death rates from around two dozen countries, which they extrapolated. Because the data are not collected to the same extent everywhere, the figures can only be approximations – probably rather underestimated – according to the scientists.
The number of children who have been orphaned by half orphans as a result of the pandemic is particularly high in relation to the population in South Africa, Mexico, Brazil and Colombia, among others. The number of children who have lost fathers is two to five times as high as the number of children who have lost mothers. (07/21/21)
The seven-day incidence in Mallorca is 335
More than 80 percent of the new cases in Spain in the past five weeks have occurred in people who have not been vaccinated. Only a good five percent were completely vaccinated. This was announced by the Spanish Minister of Health Carolina Darias. The number of new cases in Spain has been rising continuously since the end of June. Most recently, 27,286 additional infections were reported. The seven-day incidence is 327 – well above the 200 mark above which Germany can declare a region or an entire country to be a high-incidence area.
In Mallorca, too, the number of new infections per 100,000 inhabitants has risen within seven days. As the Spanish Ministry of Health announced, the incidence on Tuesday evening was 335. The previous day the value was 310, but last Friday it was 270. In the Corona hotspot Catalonia with the tourist metropolis Barcelona, however, the numbers fell slightly for the first time. The seven-day incidence decreased from 612 on Monday to 579 on Tuesday. (07/20/2021)
Greece intensifies pressure on those who refuse to be vaccinated
Because they do not want to be vaccinated against the corona virus, 54 Greek firefighters from the elite civil protection unit have been transferred to other departments. This was announced by the head of the firefighters’ union, Dimitris Stathopoulos, on the Greek news channel Skai. The elite Emak unit is deployed in the event of severe earthquakes, floods and other natural disasters. The fire brigade management had already given all firefighters time until the end of June to get vaccinated in May. After the deadline, they have now drawn the consequences, it said.
In Greece there is no nationwide compulsory vaccination, but the pressure is growing: by decree last week, the government ordered that employees in hospitals and old people’s homes can be suspended from work if they do not get vaccinated. Then they wouldn’t get any money. In the meantime, there is also compulsory vaccination in the military. (07/20/2021)
Mallorca wants to tighten the rules again
In view of the sharply increasing corona numbers, stricter restrictions are expected to be imposed again on the popular holiday island of Mallorca. In order to combat outdoor parties and drinking bouts, especially among young people, beaches and parks are to be closed from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. in the future. as the Mallorca Newspaper reported on Monday evening.
Participants of such parties are threatened with a fine of 1000 euros in the future. If a party guest violates a quarantine requirement by participating, it should increase to 2000 euros. If the participant tested positive for Corona, even 5000 euros are due. The organizers of illegal parties face fines of up to 100,000 euros.
Restaurants will also have to close a little earlier in the future, at 1 a.m. instead of 2 a.m. A maximum of four people are allowed to sit at a table inside restaurants and eight outside. From 1 a.m. to 6 a.m., according to the newspaper, only people who live in the same household are allowed to meet. Hotel or finca guests who have checked in together should be considered one household. After talks with entrepreneurs and unions such as the regional government, the regional government decided not to reintroduce the requirement to wear masks outdoors, which had been abolished just under a month ago Mallorca Newspaper reported. (07/19/2021)
World Doctors’ President warns against easing it too quickly
World Medical President Frank Ulrich Montgomery warns against opening too quickly in view of the renewed increase in the number of infections. “Now to simply drop the restrictions on our contacts and ‘open everything’ would be extremely dangerous,” said Montgomery to the newspapers of the Funke media group. “If you do that, you risk entering the fourth wave.” Even the smaller opening steps of the past few weeks would have increased the incidence values. The number of infected people is currently doubling every week.
Instead, Montgomery advocated a gradual and controlled approach. “Don’t open everything right away – as is planned in Great Britain – but gradually allow more contacts.” According to the head of the World Medical Association, distance rules and mask requirements should be maintained indoors and everywhere where minimum distances cannot be maintained.
It was hopeful news that the therapies had improved, intensive care units had more experience and vaccinated people would experience less severe courses, said Montgomery. “But let’s not forget how deceptive the infection numbers last summer came across and what destructive power the virus developed afterwards.” Montgomery appealed to citizens to be careful of their own accord, even if more is allowed. “Anyone who wants to prevent another total lockdown, who wants to enable our children and adolescents to run a regular school, will voluntarily adhere to these rules – out of reason,” said Montgomery.
Study: how big is the corona risk for children?