Coronavirus: What’s happening in Canada and around the world Monday

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U.S. President Joe Biden received his COVID-19 booster shot on Monday, days after federal regulators recommended a third dose of the Pfizer vaccine for Americans age 65 or older and approved them for others with pre-existing medical conditions and high-risk work environments.

U.S. President Joe Biden receives a COVID-19 booster shot after delivering remarks at the White House on Monday. (Evan Vucci/The Associated Press)

The latest:

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  • Ottawa ready to help Saskatchewan battle COVID-19 surge, federal health minister says.
     
  • Tensions mount at Manitoba immunization sites as vaccine mandates loom, workers say.
     
  • Track how many people have been given the COVID-19 vaccine across Canada.
     
  • Have a coronavirus question or news tip for CBC News? Email: [email protected] or join us live in the comments now.

U.S. President Joe Biden received his COVID-19 booster shot on Monday, days after federal regulators recommended a third dose of the Pfizer vaccine for Americans age 65 or older and approved them for others with pre-existing medical conditions and high-risk work environments.

“The most important thing we need to do is get more people vaccinated,” Biden said before getting the booster. He said he didn’t have side-effects after his first or second shots.

Biden, 78, got his first shot on Dec. 21 and his second dose three weeks later, on Jan. 11, along with his wife, Jill Biden.

Speaking on Friday after the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration authorized the Pfizer booster, Biden told reporters, “I’ll be getting my booster shot. It’s hard to acknowledge I’m over 65, but I’ll be getting my booster shot. “

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Biden emerged as a champion of booster doses this summer, as the U.S. experienced a sharp rise in coronavirus cases from the more transmissible delta variant. While the vast majority of cases continue to occur among unvaccinated people, regulators pointed to evidence from Israel and early studies in the U.S. showing that protection against so-called breakthrough cases was vastly improved by a third dose of the Pfizer shot.

Pushback from WHO on boosters

But the aggressive American push for boosters, before many poorer countries have been able to provide even a modicum of protection for their most vulnerable populations, has drawn the ire of the World Health Organization and some aid groups, which have called on the U.S. to pause third shots to free up supply for the global vaccination effort.

Biden said last week that the U.S. was purchasing another 500 million doses of the Pfizer vaccine — for a total of one billion over the coming year — to donate to less well-off countries.

Vice-President Kamala Harris, 56, received the Moderna vaccine, for which federal regulators have not yet authorized boosters — but they are expected to in the coming weeks. Regulators are also expecting data about the safety and efficacy of a booster for the single-dose Johnson & Johnson shot soon.

At least 2.66 million Americans have received booster doses of the Pfizer vaccine since mid-August, according to the CDC. About 100 million Americans have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 through the Pfizer shot. U.S. regulators recommend getting the boosters at least six months after the second shot of the initial two-dose series.

— From The Associated Press, last updated at 1:45 p.m. ET


What’s happening across Canada

WATCH | What’s happening inside Alberta, Saskatchewan hospitals

What’s happening inside Alberta, Sask. hospitals

Two infectious disease doctors talk to Ian Hanomansing about the situation inside Alberta and Saskatchewan hospitals and what the provinces need to do to get their COVID-19 surges under control. 5:35

  • A guide to COVID-19 school outbreak protocols across Canada.
     
  • New Brunswick reports 1 death, 82 new cases of COVID-19 Sunday.
     
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  • Dalhousie University condemns ‘reckless’ behaviour of students after weekend street parties.
     
  • Ontario’s COVID-19 rates lower than expected due to public health measures, say experts.

What’s happening around the world

Students arrive at school as in-person classes resume amid the COVID-19 pandemic in Kuwait City on Sunday. (Yasser Al-Zayyat/AFP/Getty Images)

As of Monday afternoon, more than 232 million cases of COVID-19 had been reported worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University. The reported global death toll stood at more than 4.7 million.

In the Middle East, Jordan’s royal palace says Crown Prince Al Hussein bin Abdullah II has tested positive for COVID-19 and is displaying “mild symptoms.” The palace said in a statement that King Abdullah II and Queen Rania, the 27-year-old crown prince’s parents, have both tested negative but will self-quarantine for five days. All three members of the royal family have been vaccinated.

Health officials in Kuwait on Sunday reported one death and 37 new cases of COVID-19. Some students in Kuwait have returned to classrooms for the first time since 2020, with more students expected to follow in the weeks ahead.

In Europe, President Emmanuel Macron on Saturday said France would give 120 million COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries, doubling an earlier pledge, French news agency AFP reported.

In the Americas, the COVID-19 vaccine by Pfizer-BioNTech will be the only one used in Mexico for at-risk children aged 12 to 17, Mexico’s deputy health minister said.

In the Asia-Pacific region, Japan plans to lift its COVID-19 state of emergency, which covers 19 prefectures, in all of the regions at the end of September, broadcaster NHK reported on Monday. Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said he discussed easing measures with relevant ministers on Monday, and would seek the views of a government panel of advisers on Tuesday.

A mother is seen comforting her child last week as the child received the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine at a hospital in Bangkok. (Sakchai Lalit/The Associated Press)

Thailand’s COVID-19 task force approved a plan to procure a combined 3.35 million doses of the AstraZeneca and Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines, a spokesperson said. The country will also waive its mandatory quarantine requirement in Bangkok and nine regions from Nov. 1 to vaccinated arrivals, according to authorities.

In Africa, Tunisia will entirely lift its nightly curfew against COVID-19 from Saturday, the presidency said, after about a year in force.

— From The Associated Press, Reuters and CBC News, last updated at 1:45 p.m. ET


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