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COVID-19

Virtually shivering: Crowded Jan. 1 polar plunges put on ice

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — The coronavirus pandemic has poured cold water all over the tradition of gathering en masse to ring in the new year by taking an icy plunge, but organizers are going with the floe. Organizers of many traditional "polar plunges" have resolved to stay safe on New ...

Colorado Guardsman has 1st reported US case of virus variant

DENVER (AP) — A Colorado National Guard member has the first reported U.S. case of a new and seemingly more contagious variant of the coronavirus that has set off alarm in Britain, while a second case is suspected in another Guard member, health officials said Wednesday. The two were sent ...

China clamps down in hidden hunt for coronavirus origins

MOJIANG, China (AP) — Deep in the lush mountain valleys of southern China lies the entrance to a mine shaft that once harbored bats with the closest known relative of the COVID-19 virus. The area is of intense scientific interest because it may hold clues to the origins of the coronavirus ...

Greek nurse erects ICU at home to treat relatives with virus

AGIOS ATHANASIOS, Greece (AP) — What does a medical professional do when his wife and in-laws contract the disease at the center of a months-long pandemic? Gabriel Tachtatzoglou, a critical care nurse, did not feel good about the treatment options available in Greece's second-largest city ...

Massachusetts starts vaccinating veterans home residents

BOSTON (AP) — With a thumbs up and a round of applause from staff, Air Force veteran Robert Aucoin on Tuesday became the first resident of the Holyoke Soldiers' Home in Massachusetts to get vaccinated against the coronavirus. "Great, great, leading the way," Aucoin, 78, said through his ...

‘Hallelujah!’ Nursing home residents, staff get vaccine

BOSTON (AP) — The plan to give the coronavirus vaccine to all residents and workers in long-term care facilities in Massachusetts began on Monday. Nancy Vecchione Colonero, 103, a resident of the Beaumont Rehabilitation and Skilled Nursing Center in Westborough, was one of the first people ...

New England Culinary Institute to close after 40 years

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — The Vermont-based New England Culinary Institute is closing its doors after 40 years partly due to added challenges caused by the coronavirus pandemic. In an undated letter to the school community posted on the NECI website, President Milan Milasinovic said the ...

More COVID-19 vaccines in the pipeline as US effort ramps up

A huge U.S. study of another COVID-19 vaccine candidate got underway Monday as states continue to roll out scarce supplies of the first shots to a nation anxiously awaiting relief from the catastrophic outbreak. Public health experts say more options in addition to the two vaccines now being ...

As South Africa’s virus spikes, president bans liquor sales

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — South African President Cyril Ramaphosa reimposed a ban on alcohol sales and ordered the closure of all bars Monday as part of new restrictions to help the country battle a resurgence of the coronavirus, including a new variant. Ramaphosa also announced the closure of ...

As COVID-19 ravages US, shootings, killings are also up

DETROIT (AP) — When Andre Avery drives his commercial truck through Detroit, he keeps his pistol close. Avery, 57, grew up in the Motor City and is aware that homicides and shootings are surging, even though before the pandemic they were dropping in Detroit and elsewhere. His gun is legal, ...

The Latest: US coronavirus cases top 19 million mark

BALTIMORE -- The U.S. has now topped 19 million coronavirus cases since the pandemic began, data compiled by Johns Hopkins University shows. America exceeded that mark on Sunday, just six days after it reached 18 million. The nation's case numbers have more than doubled in less than two ...

Fauci: US taking hard look at variant of coronavirus

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. health officials believe the coronavirus mutation that set off alarms in parts of Britain is no more apt to cause serious illness or be resistant to vaccines than the strain afflicting people in the United States but it still must be taken "very seriously," the ...

South Africa on verge of new virus rules as it hits 1M cases

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — South Africa's COVID-19 spike has taken the country to more than 1 million confirmed cases on Sunday and President Cyril Ramaphosa called an emergency meeting of the National Coronavirus Command Council. The country's new variant of the coronavirus, 501.V2, is more ...

‘Believe in science’: EU kicks off COVID-19 vaccine campaign

ROME (AP) — Doctors, nurses and the elderly rolled up their sleeves across the European Union to receive the first doses of the coronavirus vaccine Sunday in a symbolic show of unity and moment of hope for a continent confronting its worst health care crisis in a century. Weeks after the ...

Tribes try to shield elders and their knowledge from virus

As Monica Harvey watched, crowds flocked to a Sam's Club in northern Arizona where she works, picking shelves clean of toilet paper and canned goods. Native American seniors couldn't move fast enough, and Harvey saw their faces fall when they reached empty shelves. The Navajo woman wanted to ...

Maine EMTs get coronavirus vaccine; Vermont courts go remote

Emergency medical technicians in southern Maine are beginning to receive the coronavirus vaccine. The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention has said thousands of people have been vaccinated in the state, which is focusing its early efforts on front-line health care providers and ...

“Believe in science:” EU kicks off COVID-19 vaccine campaign

ROME (AP) — Doctors, nurses and the elderly rolled up their sleeves across the European Union to receive the first doses of the coronavirus vaccine Sunday in a symbolic show of unity and moment of hope for a continent confronting its worst health care crisis in a century. Even though a few ...

Wars, instability pose vaccine challenges in poor nations

DAR MANGI, Pakistan (AP) — Arifullah Khan had just administered another polio vaccine when the gunfire blasted from the nearby hills. "It happened so suddenly. There was so much gunfire it felt like an explosion," he said, recalling details of the attack five years ago in Pakistan's Bajaur ...

Germany, Hungary give 1st vaccine shots ahead of EU rollout

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — Germany, Hungary and Slovakia began giving out their first coronavirus vaccine shots on Saturday only hours after receiving their first shipments, upsetting the European Union's plans for a coordinated rollout Sunday across the bloc's 27 nations. "Every day that we ...

Millions face new UK virus restrictions; border chaos eases

LONDON (AP) — Millions of people in the U.K. faced tough new coronavirus restrictions Saturday, with Scotland and Northern Ireland demanding tighter measures to try to halt a new variant of the virus that is believed to spread more quickly. Northern Ireland went into a six-week lockdown and ...