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Pandemic

Indian state sharply raises COVID-19 death toll prompting call for wide review

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An Indian state has significantly increased its COVID-19 death toll after the discovery of thousands of unreported cases, adding to suspicions that India’s total death toll is significantly higher than the official figure.

Indian hospitals ran out of beds and life-saving oxygen during a devastating second wave of coronavirus in April and May, and people died in parking lots outside of hospitals and in their homes.

Many of these deaths weren’t included in COVID-19 numbers, doctors and health experts say.

India has the second highest number of COVID-19 infections in the world after the United States with 29.2 million cases and 359,676 deaths, according to the Department of Health.

But the discovery of several thousand unreported deaths in Bihar state has raised suspicions that many more coronavirus victims are not included in the official figures.

The health department in Bihar, one of India’s poorest states, has revised its total death toll related to COVID-19 from about 5,424 on Wednesday to more than 9,429.

The newly reported deaths occurred last month and state officials are investigating the failure, a district health official said, blaming private hospitals for oversight.

“These deaths occurred 15 days ago and have only now been uploaded to the government portal. Some of the private hospitals are being prosecuted,” said the official, who refused to identify him as he is not allowed to speak to the media.

Health experts say they believe coronavirus infections and deaths are both significantly under counted across the country, partly because testing facilities are rare in rural areas, where two-thirds of Indians live, and hospitals are few and far between.

Many people fell ill and died at home without having been tested for the coronavirus.

‘WIDELY WIDELY PROBLEM’

As crematoria struggled with the wave of death in the past two months, many families either laid corpses in the holy Ganges or buried them in shallow graves on its sandbanks.

These people would likely not have been registered as COVID victims.

“Underreporting is a widespread problem that is not strictly deliberate, often due to inadequacies,” Rajib Dasgupta, director of the Center for Social Medicine and Community Health at Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi, told Reuters.

“In the rural context, whatever the states say or claim, testing is not simple, easy or accessible,” said Dasgupta.

Overall, cases and deaths in India have steadily declined in recent weeks after rising from mid-March.

The official total of cases stood at 29.2 million on Thursday, after increasing 94,052 in the past 24 hours, while the total death toll stood at 359,676, according to the Health Department.

The New York Times estimated deaths based on the number of deaths over time and infection death rates, putting India’s toll at 600,000 to 1.6 million.

The government dismissed these estimates as exaggerated. However, the main opposition party in Congress said other states should follow Bihar’s lead and conduct a review of deaths over the past two months.

“This proves beyond any doubt that the government has been hiding COVID deaths,” said Shama Mohamed, a spokeswoman for Congress, adding that an audit should also be ordered in the major states of Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat.

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

Pandemic

Experts fear COVID-19 pandemic could cause human trafficking crisis

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ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) – Human trafficking is the second fastest growing crime in the world after drug trafficking.

The statistics are terrifying. Most women are raped 6,000 times and each woman is worth $ 100,000 a year, making them very valuable and making their chances of escape almost impossible. It doesn’t just happen in big cities or poor neighborhoods, but in almost every community in our country and experts fear that COVID-19 will trigger a human trafficking crisis.

“I had a very difficult divorce from a very wealthy husband. He actually let me be trafficked so I wouldn’t get custody of my five children, ”trafficked survivor Kimberly Lansford told Ivanhoe.

Kimberly Lansford was 27 when traffickers drugged her and took her from Denver to Mexico City.

“You’re being broken into by terror, a lot of physical abuse, a lot of sexual abuse,” said Kimberly Lansford.

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Kimberly’s nightmare lasted 19 years until …

“The Samaritan Village found me,” said Kimberly Lansford.

For more than a decade, Samaritan Village has been helping women rebuild their lives.

“Young women who feel ugly, unwanted and unseen can visit these traffickers and fill that void,” said Dionne Coleman, executive director of Samaritan Village.

Samaritan Village offers hope and provides housing free of charge for 18 months. Survivors receive mental, physical and dental care, access to professional training and, most importantly, support. Money from donors and from their thrift store is helping to cover the costs, but now organizations like these fear the consequences of the pandemic.

“We call it the calm before the storm, so to speak. I know there will be a lot of people who will need help when we all get back to normal, ”said Dionne Coleman.

Some women could not get any help during the lockdown.

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“It doesn’t just happen to the underclass or to drug addicts, it’s not true. It happens to people like me every day, ”announced Kimberly Lansford.

“When you see something, copy someone who feels, or there’s a pairing of people who doesn’t feel right, call this human trafficking hotline,” said Dionne Coleman.

The biggest misconception about human trafficking is that the victims are runaways or addicts. Family Members Selling Family members, as in Kimberly’s case, is common.

Also, traffickers often target high school girls and threaten to ruin their reputations. Samaritan Village works with local colleges for scholarships. To learn more, visit samaritanvillage.net.

Sources: https://www.hsdl.org/?abstract&did=23329, https://www.rainn.org/statistics/scope-problem https://www.samaritanvillage.net/

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Contributors to this news report are: Marsha Lewis, producer; Matt Goldschmidt, videographer; Roque Correa, editor. To receive a free weekly email on Ivanhoe’s Smart Living, sign up at: http://www.ivanhoe.com/ftk

Copyright 2021 by KSAT – All rights reserved.

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Reuters, New York Times win Pulitzers for coverage of racial injustice, COVID-19

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Reuters and the Minneapolis Star Tribune each won a Pulitzer Prize for Journalism on Racial Inequality in U.S. Police Work on Friday, while the New York Times and the Atlantic were honored for Chronicle of the COVID-19 Pandemic, the two topics that the Last year’s headlines dominated.

The Star Tribune won the 2021 Pulitzer Prize for breaking news coverage for its “urgent, authoritative and nuanced” coverage of the police murder of George Floyd last May, while Reuters and Atlantic shared the award in explanatory coverage.

The Pulitzer Prizes are the most prestigious awards in American journalism and have been presented since 1917, when newspaper publisher Joseph Pulitzer bequeathed them to Columbia University in New York.

In 2020, “the country’s news organizations are faced with the complexities of covering a global pandemic, a racial reckoning, and a bitterly competitive presidential election, one at a time,” said Mindy Marques, co-chair of the Pulitzer Board of Directors, at the announcement ceremony, which broadcast online has been .

The board cited Reuters reporters Andrew Chung, Lawrence Hurley, Andrea Januta, Jaimi Dowdell and Jackie Botts for the “groundbreaking data analysis” of their “Shielded” series, which showed how an obscure legal doctrine of “qualified immunity” shielded police officers make excessive use of the force of law enforcement.

Reuters editor-in-chief Alessandra Galloni said in a statement that the series shaped the debate over American police reform.

“In a year of stormy protests against the police killings of black Americans, ‘Shielded’ was a work of tremendous moral force on the persistent problem facing the world’s most powerful democracy, the legacy of racial injustice,” the statement said.

The Pulitzer Prize for Reuters, an entity of Thomson Reuters (TRI.TO), was the ninth since 2008 and the sixth in the past four years.

The Reuters team shared the explanatory coverage award with Ed Yong of The Atlantic, who was recognized by the board for “a series of clear, definitive contributions to the COVID-19 pandemic.”

A SINGLE CASE

Mary Stewart holds an obituary for her son Luke Stewart on November 12, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio, United States. REUTERS / Megan Jelinger

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Reuters’ series of police stories were triggered by a single case – and required lengthy, complex data analysis.

In April 2017, the US Supreme Court declined to reopen an unarmed suspect alleging unconstitutional excessive violence against a Houston police officer for shooting him in the back. Reuters Supreme Court reporters Chung and Hurley have teamed up with data reporters Januta, Dowdell and Botts. They analyzed hundreds of cases and found that since 2005 the courts have shown an increasing tendency to grant immunity in cases of excessive violence. They then detailed the cases of a number of victims of police violence who were denied justice, even after courts found the officers were too violent.

The first Reuters story came out just weeks before the murder of Floyd, a 46-year-old black man who died in handcuffs when a white Minneapolis police officer kneeled on his neck. The coverage had a broad influence on the national discussion of US police problems.

“The data we produced was quoted in almost every major news organization immediately after the George Floyd murder,” Hurley said, adding that it was also quoted in court records and informally by judges.

SPECIAL QUOTATION

Many of the 2021 Pulitzer Awards went to coverage of policing and the global protest movement that broke out after Floyd’s assassination: the Associated Press won the Breaking News Photography Award for pictures of the protests, while Robert Greene of the Los Angeles Times for editorial contributions won for his work on bail reform and prisons.

The board also said it gave Darnella Frazier, the teenage viewer who recorded a video of Floyd’s murder on her cell phone, a “special quote” highlighting “the vital role of citizens in helping journalists find truth and justice” .

The New York Times won the Public Service Journalism Award, often considered the most coveted of the 22 awards, for its “predictive and comprehensive coverage of the coronavirus pandemic.” The Boston Globe won for investigative coverage for exposing a systematic failure by state governments to share information about dangerous truck drivers that could have kept them off the road.

The announcement of the prices on Friday, each worth $ 15,000, had been postponed to April amid the pandemic. The awards dinner, which usually takes place shortly after at Columbia University, has been postponed until the fall.

The Pulitzer Board of Directors also recognizes achievements in seven categories in the arts and awarded Louise Erdrich its Fiction Prize for her novel “The Night Watchman” about attempting to evict Indian tribes in the 1950s.

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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Oregon reports no new COVID-19 related deaths, 308 new cases; transmission rate falling

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PORTLAND, Oregon (KTVZ) – Oregon has no new deaths related to COVID-19 and the state’s death toll remains at 2,726, the Oregon Health Department reported Friday.

OHA also reported 308 new confirmed and suspected cases of COVID-19 at 12:01 a.m. Friday, bringing the state’s total to 204,587.

Information from today’s media briefing

On Friday morning, Governor Kate Brown and Dr. Dean Sidelinger, State Health Commissioner and State Epidemiologist at OHA, provided an update on Oregon’s ongoing COVID-19 response. Governor Brown highlighted Oregon’s continued progress in meeting its goal of vaccinating at least 70% of all eligible Oregonians and filling the equity gap in vaccinating Oregon’s colored communities.

Dr. Sidelinger discussed the high protective effects of COVID-19 vaccines, noting that virtually every patient who now requires hospital treatment for COVID-19 is unvaccinated.

See more about it here and read the topics of the press conference here.

Update on CDC data tracker problems

OHA has relied on a daily data update from the U.S. Centers for Disease and Control Prevention (CDC) to report the number of people who will need COVID-19 vaccination to reach the Oregon goal, 70% of the time Vaccinate people over the age of 18.

Unfortunately, CDC has an issue with the data feed contributing to its COVID data tracker dashboard, which Oregon is using to track the state’s progress toward 70%.

CDC anticipates that approximately two days of data will not appear on the CDC COVID data tracker dashboard. CDC is working to resolve the issue and expects to have it resolved by June 15th. The COVID data tracker is the only place that reports doses from all sources that have been given to Oregonians, including doses given by federal agencies as well as doses given to living people in Oregon by vendors in other states.

The latest COVID-19 modeling report shows a decline in transmission

On Friday, OHA released its latest COVID-19 forecast, which showed lower transmission of the virus through the end of May and forecast fewer hospitalizations and daily cases through June 29.

According to the model, the effective reproduction rate – the expected number of secondary cases a single case will generate – was estimated to be 0.66 by May 26.

At the same transmission rate, daily cases would drop to 100 daily cases and new hospital admissions to five per day over the next three weeks.

If transmission increased by 20%, the number of new cases would gradually decrease to 135 new daily cases with seven new hospital admissions daily.

The modeling shows that estimated immunity from vaccination is present in four times more people than naturally acquired immunity. Natural immunity is immunity that stems from a previous infection.

A person who has had COVID-19 and has recovered may not have the same level of immunity as a person who has not been infected and has been fully vaccinated, and it is not known how long natural immunity will last.

People who have recovered from the disease will respond strongly to the vaccine. OHA recommends people get the vaccine to increase their protection against COVID-19.

More than 2.3 million Oregonians have received at least one dose of the safe and highly effective vaccine, and 2 million have completed a vaccine series, OHA said.

Vaccinations in Oregon

OHA reported Friday that 24,213 new doses of COVID-19 vaccinations have been added to the state vaccination registry. Of these, 15,926 doses were administered on Thursday and 8,987 on the previous days, but entered in the vaccine register on Thursday.

The running average over seven days is now 17,697 doses per day.

Oregon has now administered a total of 2,352,742 first and second doses of Pfizer, 1,662,657 first and second doses of Moderna, and 154,388 single doses of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines. As of Friday, 2,007,367 people have completed a COVID-19 vaccine series. There are 2,310,053 people who received at least one dose. The number of adult Oregonians who need vaccinations to reach the 70% threshold is 87,702.

It can take several days to complete the daily cumulative totals as providers have 72 hours to report the doses administered, and technical challenges have left many providers delayed in their reporting. OHA provides technical support to vaccination centers to improve the timeliness of their data entry into the state’s ALERT Vaccination Information System (IIS).

To date, 2,862,225 doses of Pfizer, 2,176,380 doses of Moderna and 299,000 doses of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines have been shipped to locations across Oregon.

These dates are preliminary and are subject to change.

The OHA dashboards provide regularly updated vaccination data, and the Oregon dashboard was updated on Friday.

COVID-19 hospital stays

The number of hospital patients with COVID-19 across Oregon is 169, down four from Thursday. There are 40 COVID-19 patients on the beds of the intensive care unit (ICU), one less than on Thursday.

The total number of COVID-19 positive patient bed days in the last seven days is 1,278, a decrease of 23.4% compared to the previous seven days. The peak daily number of beds occupied by COVID-19 positive patients in the past seven days is 206.

The total number of patients in hospital beds may vary between reporting times. The numbers do not reflect the number of admissions per day or the length of hospital stay. Personnel restrictions are not recorded in this data and can further limit the bed capacity.

More information on hospital capacity can be found here.

St. Charles Bend reported 25 COVID-19 patients, five of them in intensive care, all on ventilators at 4 a.m. on Friday.

Cases and deaths

The new confirmed and suspected COVID-19 cases reported on Friday are in the following counties: Benton (3), Clackamas (34), Clatsop (4), Columbia (6), Coos (1), Crook (8), Curry (2), Deschutes (14), Douglas (15), Grant (2), Hood River (2), Jackson (21), Jefferson (3), Josephine (3), Klamath (2), Lake (1) , Lane (12), Lincoln (1), Linn (12), Malheur (2), Marion (31), Multnomah (67), Polk (5), Umatilla (11), Union (1), Wasco (1) , Washington (37) and Yamhill (7).

Note: From April 30 through June 10, based on routine data quality reviews, the OHA identified 19,992 duplicate negative electronic laboratory reports (ELRs) relating to a single laboratory in Yamhill County. These double negative ELRs were removed from the system Thursday night. As a result, ELR numbers across the state and Yamhill County have declined, and percent positivity has increased for that period.

Learn more about COVID-19 vaccinations

To learn more about the COVID-19 vaccine situation in Oregon, visit the OHA website (English or Spanish) for a breakdown of distribution and other information.

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