COVID-19 led to largest global economic contraction in 80 years: World Bank, IMF
The World Bank and the International Monetary Fund said the global economic contraction caused by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic is the largest in the last eight decades, raising the world poverty rate, exacerbating inequalities and damaging long-term economic growth prospects. The WB and IMF concluded their annual meeting here on Friday, which heavily revolved around the impact of COVID-19.
India gained over a decade of life expectancy in 30 years: Lancet
India has gained more than a decade of life expectancy since 1990, but there are wide inequalities between states, according to a new study which assessed more than 286 causes of death and 369 diseases and injuries in more than 200 countries and territories across the world. The study, published in the Lancet journal, noted that life expectancy in India has risen from 59.6 years in 1990 to 70.8 years in 2019. However, the researchers, said the increase in "healthy life expectancy" in India has not been as dramatic since "people are living more years with illness and disability".
Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw says COVID-19 testing in India can increase ten-fold
India could potentially scale up coronavirus testing ten-fold, said Biocon founder and Chairman Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw. The Biocon chief batted for pooled testing that could test as many as 10 people using the same resources. Since pooled testing works better in clusters with low prevalence, Mazumdar-Shaw suggested combining the technique with the rapid antigen and RT-PCR tests. The Biocon chief said that India's biggest challenge would be to build cold chain logistics to distribute vaccines across the country in a short period of time.
Boeing 737 MAX plane: European aviation regulator declares aircraft safe to fly
In a major respite to American aerospace company Boeing, Europe's top aviation regulator has declared its 737 MAX aircraft safe enough to return to skies. The European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) is satisfied with the changes made to Boeing Co.'s 737 Max plane and said that it is safe enough to return to the region's skies before 2020 is out, Bloomberg reported. This major announcement came even as some of the further upgrades, demanded by the agency would not ready for up to two years.
Delhi residents worry about toxic mix of pollution, COVID-19
Families in Delhi with pre-existing health conditions such as asthma are stocking up on oxygen cylinders and pulse oximeters, fearing that the city's worsening air quality will make them more vulnerable to the coronavirus. After months of relatively clean air because of a lockdown imposed to fight the virus, pollution levels have spiked to their worst in two years for October, caused by farmers burning crop stubble in surrounding states and cooler weather.
Serum Institute to ready 60-70 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine by December
Pune-based Serum Institute of India (SII), which is in the final phase of developing a COVID-19 vaccine licensed from AstraZeneca, says it will get ready with 60-70 million doses by December. India may get COVID-19 vaccine by March 2021 provided the regulators signal with the processes fast as multiple manufacturers are working on it, and already two are in phase-3 trial and one in the phase-2 trial.