STOCK MARKET BSE NSE

Delta variant, unequal vaccines drive high South East Asia toll

Seven of the top 10 countries where COVID-19 deaths have doubled the fastest are in Asia and the Pacific, with Vietnam, Fiji and Myanmar in the top five, according to Our World in Data.

Published: 18th August 2021 03:04 PM  |   Last Updated: 18th August 2021 03:04 PM   |  A+A-

Malaysia

Motorists wearing face masks wait in front of the Twin Towers during the first day of Full Movement Control Order in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. (Photo | AP)

By Associated Press

KUALA LUMPUR: The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies says Southeast Asia is battling the world’s highest COVID-19 death toll, driven by the delta variant and unequal distribution of vaccines.

Southeast Asia recorded 38,522 deaths from COVID-19 in the last two weeks, nearly twice as many as North America, it says, citing data from John Hopkins University.

Seven of the top 10 countries where COVID-19 deaths have doubled the fastest are in Asia and the Pacific, with Vietnam, Fiji and Myanmar in the top five, according to Our World in Data.

Its Asia Pacific director, Alexander Matheou, called Wednesday for richer countries to urgently share their excess vaccine doses with Southeast Asian nations to curb record surge in infections and deaths in the region.

It said vaccine companies and governments also need to share technology and scale up production to help ramp up low vaccination rate in the region. While the United Kingdom, Canada and Spain have fully vaccinated over 60% of their population, it said Southeast Asian nations are falling far behind.

Malaysia has fully vaccinated 34% of its population, Indonesia and Philippines close to 11% and Vietnam less than 2%. Matheou said each country must aim for mass vaccination rates of 70%-80% for the world to overcome the pandemic.



Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp