COVID-19: Top news stories about the pandemic on 2 February | World Economic Forum – World Economic Forum

February 4, 2022

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Confirmed cases of COVID-19 have passed 381.9 million globally, according to Johns Hopkins University. The number of confirmed deaths has now passed 5.68 million. More than 10.1 billion vaccination doses have been administered globally, according to Our World in Data.
Tonga, hit by a tsunami last month, has gone into lockdown after two wharf workers were confirmed to have COVID-19.
Australia’s COVID-19 hospitalization rate has fallen to its lowest in nearly three weeks.
Norway will scrap its remaining COVID-19 lockdown measures. A spike in infections is unlikely to jeopardize health services, the prime minister said yesterday.
The Czech Republic reported 57,195 new confirmed COVID-19 infections on Tuesday, its highest daily tally since the pandemic started.
Turkey has also recorded its highest daily case tally since the start of the pandemic, with 102,601 new confirmed COVID-19 cases – crossing the 100,000 mark for the first time.
Suspected reinfections account for around 10% of England’s COVID-19 cases so far this year, a Reuters analysis suggests, after the UK Health Security Agency changed how it calculates COVID-19 data.
US regulators are considering the first COVID-19 vaccine for children under five, as Pfizer and BioNTech began the regulatory approval process on Tuesday.
The World Health Organization has warned that discarded medical waste from the COVID-19 pandemic threatens human health and the environment.
The COVID Response Alliance to Social Entrepreneurs – soon to continue its work as the Global Alliance for Social Entrepreneurship – was launched in April 2020 in response to the devastating effects of the pandemic. Co-founded by the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship together with Ashoka, Echoing Green, GHR Foundation, Skoll Foundation, and Yunus Social Business.
The Alliance provides a trusted community for the world’s leading corporations, investors, governments, intermediaries, academics, and media who share a commitment to social entrepreneurship and innovation.
Since its inception, it has since grown to become the largest multi-stakeholder coalition in the social enterprise sector: its 90+ members collectively support over 100,000 social entrepreneurs across the world. These entrepreneurs, in turn, have a direct or indirect impact on the lives of an estimated 2 billion people.

Together, they work to (i) mobilize support for social entrepreneurs and their agendas; (ii) take action on urgent global agendas using the power of social entrepreneurship, and (iii) share insights from the sector so that social entrepreneurs can flourish and lead the way in shaping an inclusive, just and sustainable world.
The Alliance works closely together with member organizations Echoing Green and GHR Foundation, as well as the Centre for the New Economy and Society on the roll out of its 2022 roadmap (soon to be announced).

The BA.2 form of the Omicron COVID-19 variant doesn’t seem to be any more severe than the original BA.1 form, a World Health Organization (WHO) official said yesterday.
Vaccines also continue to provide similar protection against the different forms of Omicron, Boris Pavlin of the WHO’s COVID-19 Response Team told an online briefing.
The comments come as the BA.2 subvariant begins to replace Omicron’s more common ‘original’ BA.1 subvariant in countries such as Denmark.
“Looking at other countries where BA.2 is now overtaking, we’re not seeing any higher bumps in hospitalization than expected,” Pavlin said.
The subvariant is already becoming dominant in the Philippines, Nepal, Qatar, India and Denmark, Pavlin said. It’s thought to be in at least 57 countries.
Many countries have not reached their peak in cases of the highly transmissible Omicron COVID-19 variant and measures imposed to curb its spread should be eased slowly, the World Health Organization’s technical lead on COVID-19 said yesterday.
“We are urging caution because many countries have not gone through the peak of Omicron yet. Many countries have low levels of vaccination coverage with very vulnerable individuals within their populations,” Maria Van Kerkhove told an online briefing.
“And so now is not the time to lift everything all at once. We have always urged: always (be) very cautious in applying interventions as well as lifting those interventions in a steady and in a slow way, piece by piece. Because this virus is quite dynamic,” she said.

Joe Myers, Writer, Formative Content
The views expressed in this article are those of the author alone and not the World Economic Forum.
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