US to ship extra COVID-19 vaccines to Mexico amid Delta surge

The United States will ship as much as an extra 8.5 million coronavirus vaccine doses to Mexico, as each international locations proceed to grapple with a spike in infections fuelled by the extremely contagious Delta variant.

Speaking on Tuesday, a day after holding a telephone name with US Vice President Kamala Harris, President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador mentioned he anticipated most adults living alongside the border with the US may have obtained their second dose of the vaccine inside a month.

He mentioned each he and Harris agreed upon the significance of reopening the land border, which has been closed since March of 2020.

Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard, in the meantime, mentioned the US would supply to Mexico 3.5 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine developed by drugmaker Moderna, in addition to as much as 5 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine.

The feedback got here because the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued new travel warnings for Israel, France, Thailand, Iceland and a number of other different international locations as infections from the Delta variant proceed to spike.

Mexico has seen a gentle rise in instances in current weeks, reporting greater than 6,500 new infections on Monday, though well being consultants mentioned the precise quantity is probably going a lot larger.

Several US states are additionally struggling to manage current surges, in what prime infectious illness professional Anthony Fauci has dubbed a “pandemic among the unvaccinated”.

The nation is at present averaging greater than 120,000 new coronavirus instances a day, a fee that has doubled in current weeks and matches that seen earlier than the vaccine was out there within the nation. Currently, about 60 p.c of Americans who’re eligible for jabs have been utterly vaccinated.

The enhance in infections and sluggish fee of vaccinations has prompted President Joe Biden to more and more urge state and native governments to place stress on residents to get the jab.

Biden had beforehand introduced rules requiring federal employees to be vaccinated or undergo common coronavirus testing.

On Monday, the Pentagon introduced that it will require all active-duty service members to be vaccinated by mid-September.

Washington additionally turned the latest state to require most state workers to be vaccinated or threat shedding their jobs.

‘Startling numbers’

US officers have mentioned seven states – Florida, Texas, Missouri, Arkansas, Louisiana, Alabama and Mississippi – account for a disproportionate quantity of infections within the nation.

In Texas, two of the state’s largest college districts, Dallas and Houston, have introduced masks mandates for college kids and workers in defiance of Governor Greg Abbott, who applied an emergency order banning county and native authorities entities from requiring the sporting of masks and social distancing to decrease the COVID-19 threat.

Nevertheless, on Monday Abbott appealed for out-of-state assist to combat a 3rd wave of infections within the state, which has prompted a county-owned hospital, the Harris Health System and Lyndon B Johnson Hospital in Houston, to boost tents to accommodate their COVID-19 affected person overflow.

Abbott directed the Texas Department of State Health Services to make use of staffing businesses to search out further medical workers from past the state’s borders. He additionally has despatched a letter to the Texas Hospital Association to request that hospitals postpone all elective medical procedures voluntarily.

In neighbouring Arkansas, state well being officers on Monday reported the largest one-day enhance in hospitalisations for the reason that pandemic started.

The variety of folks hospitalised within the state on Monday rose by 103, bringing the full to 1,376.

The state’s Department of Health reported that there have been solely eight intensive care unit beds out there within the state as of Monday.

“Today’s report shows some very startling numbers,” Governor Asa Hutchinson mentioned in a tweet.

Only about 37 p.c of the state’s inhabitants are totally vaccinated towards the virus.

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