Inside Look At Covid Precautions At Tokyo Olympics Swimming Venue

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NBC News 20 July, 2021 - 08:00pm 4 views

What time is the Tokyo Olympics opening ceremony?

The 2021 Olympics Opening Ceremony will begin at 8 p.m. local time in Japan. With the United States' Eastern Standard Time being 13 hours behind Japan, it's going to be an early morning for those in the U.S. who want to watch the ceremony live. NBC's live coverage in the United States will begin around 6:55 a.m. ET. NBC4 WashingtonHow to Watch the Tokyo Olympics Opening Ceremony

What cities are bidding for the 2032 Olympics?

Brisbane was picked Wednesday to host the 2032 Olympics, the inevitable winner of a one-city race steered by the IOC to avoid rival bids. The Games will go back to Australia 32 years after the popular 2000 Sydney Olympics. Melbourne hosted in 1956. CBS NewsWithout any rival bids, Brisbane picked to host 2032 Olympics

When is the opening ceremony for the Olympics 2021?

NBC Olympics will provide unprecedented coverage of the Opening Ceremony on Friday, July 23, creating a full day of Olympic programming on NBC that culminates in what is always one of the most-watched nights in television with the primetime presentation of the Ceremony. NBC ChicagoWhen Do the Tokyo Olympics Start in 2021?

How long is the Olympic opening ceremony?

How long are the Opening Ceremonies? The event is scheduled to last four hours. The Washington PostOlympic Opening Ceremonies: What time, how to watch and what to know

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The latest on the Covid-19 pandemic as Olympics approach: Live updates

CNN 21 July, 2021 - 07:01pm

Latest on Covid-19 and Olympics

By Meg Wagner, Melissa Macaya, Melissa Mahtani, Mike Hayes and Veronica Rocha, CNN

A White House official and a senior aide in House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s office, who are both fully vaccinated, have tested positive for Covid-19, CNN has learned. 

A White House official confirmed that the White House staffer tested positive off campus. 

“In accordance with our rigorous Covid-19 protocols, the official remains off campus as they wait for a confirmatory PCR test. The White House Medical Unit has conducted contact tracing interviews and determined no close contacts among White House principals and staff. The individual has mild symptoms,” the official said.

The White House official has not had any recent contact with President Biden, another administration official said.

A second administration official told CNN, “If the vaccines are 90-95% effective, you're going to have 5-10% of the vaccinated population who either test positive but are asymptomatic or have mild symptoms. What you won't have are members of the vaccinated population going to the hospital with a severe illness or dying."

Axios was first to report the breakthrough cases. 

Pelosi Deputy Chief of Staff Drew Hammill said in a statement to CNN that the House Speaker has not had contact with the individual in her office who tested positive since exposure, which Hammill said occurred after contact with Texas Democrats last week. 

Some context: Six Texas lawmakers have tested positive for Covid-19 since Saturday. The lawmakers are part of the group that left Texas, flying from Austin to Washington, DC, to break the state House's quorum and block Republicans from passing a restrictive new voting law.

Officials with the group told CNN that all of the lawmakers participating in the quorum break trip are fully vaccinated, including those who have tested positive for Covid-19.

The number of excess deaths reported during India’s Covid-19 pandemic could be up to 10 times the official Covid-19 death toll, a working paper published by the US-based Center for Global Development said. 

Between 3.4 and 4.9 million estimated excess deaths were reported in India between Jan. 2020 and June 2021, while the Indian health ministry's reported death toll of approximately 400,000. 

"The Indian government has never asked for deaths to be under-reported,” Mandaviya added.

The Center for Global Development study was based on three different estimates of excess deaths. The first estimate of 3.4 million is based on the excess deaths recorded by India’s civil registration system, that keeps a record of births and deaths, in seven states which account for about half of India’s total population. 

The second estimate of four million deaths relies on India’s own seroprevalence surveys which show the proportion of the country’s population that has been infected with Covid-19, applying international infection fatality rates to this data.  

The third estimate of 4.9 million excess deaths relies on the Center for the Monitoring of the Indian Economy's survey of more than 800,000 individuals across all states to capture mortality during the first wave and some of the second wave.  

The study acknowledges that each of these three estimates have their limitations and that the number of excess deaths reported in the country do not equate to Covid-specific deaths. The authors specifically note that official death numbers tend to be underreported and that the data from the Center for the Monitoring the Indian Economy has not historically tracked closely with official mortality data. 

However it finds that the first wave of the pandemic was “more lethal than is popularly believed” and their estimates show a higher number of excess deaths reported during the first wave than the second. 

“Regardless of source and estimate, actual deaths during the Covid pandemic are likely to have been an order of magnitude greater than the official count,” the study noted.

“True deaths are likely to be in the several millions not hundreds of thousands, making this arguably India’s worst human tragedy since partition and independence,” it added. 

American swimmer Becca Meyers is withdrawing from the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games after she said the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee denied her request to bring her mother to serve as her Personal Care Assistant.

Meyers, who is deaf and blind, has relied on her mother as her Personal Care Assistant for all of her international meets since 2017, she said. However, the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee denied the request to bring her mother to Tokyo due to Covid-19 restrictions.

Instead, Meyers said the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee will provide one Personal Care Assistant to assist the 33 American Paralympic swimmers, nine of whom are visually impaired.

"So, in 2021, why as a disabled person am I still fighting for my rights? I'm speaking up for future generations of Paralympic athletes in hope that they never have to experience the pain I've been through. Enough is enough," she wrote.

The Delta variant of Covid-19 now makes up more than 80% of sequenced samples in the United States, US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said Tuesday. 

The CDC’s variant-tracking webpage has not yet updated it’s Nowcast variant estimate data for the last two weeks. 

The most recent data from Israel evaluating effectiveness of Pfizer’s mRNA Covid-19 vaccine against the Delta variant found the vaccine to be 64% protective against infection, and that the vaccine is 93% effective in preventing severe disease and hospitalizations.

Indonesia will extend its restrictions to curb Covid-19 to July 25, President Joko Widodo said in a speech streamed live on Tuesday.

Indonesia implemented restrictions in the beginning of July in all provinces on two of the country’s main islands, Java and Bali, then expanded them to 15 districts and cities outside of those two islands as the situation worsened.  

The measures closed mosques and churches and allowed restaurants and shopping malls to open only until 5 p.m. local time and 75% of non-essential workers must work from home and school education has to be done online. The restriction was to expire on Tuesday.

On Tuesday, the country reported at least 38,325 new cases and 1,280 deaths, bringing total number of cases to 2,950,058 and total deaths to 76,200. Only 6% of its population are fully vaccinated, according to the ministry. 

On Monday, Indonesia reported 1,338 Covid-19 deaths, the highest daily number since the beginning of the pandemic, according to the ministry.

The United States will begin shipping more than three million additional Covid-19 vaccines to certain Central American countries on Tuesday, a White House official told CNN.  

The US plans to send ship 1.5 million doses of the Moderna vaccine to Honduras and 1.5 million Moderna doses to El Salvador through the global vaccination program called Covid-19 Vaccines Global Access, or COVAX, adding to prior shipments provided to both countries this year.

The US will also provide 500,000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine to Panama in a bilateral donation, the official said. White House press secretary Jen Psaki announced Monday that the US was also sending 3 million vaccines to Guatemala, after shipping 1.5 million Moderna doses there earlier this month. 

The shipments are part of an ongoing effort by the Biden administration to provide Covid-19 vaccines to other countries and reassert US leadership on the world stage. Sending the vaccines to Latin America will also serve to counter efforts by Russia and China to use their own state-funded vaccines to expand their influence in the region and across the globe.

The White House has said it has been monitoring and is concerned by efforts by Russia and China to use vaccines to make geopolitical gains. Many countries – including in Latin America, which has traditionally been an area of US influence – have been buying up large numbers of Russian and Chinese vaccines to fill the gaps in their own vaccine rollouts.

Over recent weeks, the US has announced a series of vaccine shipments. Psaki also said Monday that more than one million Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccines were set to go to Gambia, Senegal, Zambia and Niger. 

The review for the much anticipated Hong Kong – Singapore travel bubble has been delayed to late August, Hong Kong government said in a news release on Tuesday.

The bubble aimed to allow quarantine-free travel, provided travelers showed proof of a negative Covid-19 test.

The two sides agreed that the review will now be conducted in late August, "taking into account the effectiveness of the enhanced infection control measures implemented by Singapore,” the statement said.

The government had been discussing air travel bubble, which would allow travelers of each cities to enter without quarantine, provided that they test negative for Covid-19. Originally planned for May, the measure had been delayed pending joint epidemiological review.

Singapore tightened its measures against Covid-19 on Monday as it reported its highest number of new infections since August last year. 

Tokyo 2020 CEO Toshiro Muto is not ruling out an 11th-hour cancellation of the Olympics Games amid rising Covid-19 cases.

"During the last five-party talk, it was clearly stated we’ll continue to monitor the coronavirus situation, and a five-party talk will be held if necessary," Muto added.

"At this stage, the coronavirus situation might get worse or better, so we will think about what to do when the situation actually arises," Muto said.

Belgium will maintain its compulsory mask mandate and tighten its travel rules following a review of its coronavirus measures, Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo announced Monday.

Speaking at a news conference in Brussels Monday evening, De Croo noted that “the vaccination campaign is progressing very well, we now have more than 8 in 10 adults who have received a first dose, that puts us at the top in Europe.”

But the prime minister warned, “we have to relax the measures step by step. We have to remain vigilant. People can still get sick.”

Wearing a face covering will remain mandatory indoors in places such as: shops, public transport, cafes, bars, places of worship, or in places where social distancing can't be maintained, with the exception of children under the age of 12.

There will be a stricter procedure for countries from the European Union or Schengen area where dangerous virus variants circulate. When returning from such a European high-risk zone, people who have not yet been fully vaccinated must also take a PCR test on day 7 in addition to a PCR test on day 1.

The measures will be in place till at least Sept. 1 and will be reviewed in one month, a news release said.

In the latest figures from Sciensano, the Belgian Health Authority, the number of infections and admissions to hospital have begun to rise. 

From July 13 to 19, on average, 26 people were admitted to hospital each day, a 48% increase on the week before. 

The latest consolidated data on coronavirus cases shows that between July 10 to 16, an average of 1,330 cases were reported each day, a 42% increase on the week before. 

In total Belgium has recorded 1,107,208 cases and 25,213 coronavirus related deaths since the beginning of the pandemic.

Who is Jade Carey? Get to know U.S. gymnastics' automatic individual Olympic qualifier

USA TODAY 21 July, 2021 - 07:01pm

American gymnast Jade Carey will be one of the first athletes to take advantage of the new team structure when she competes as an individual in Tokyo.

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U.S. gymnastics star Simone Biles and her teammates boarded a flight to Tokyo from San Francisco for the 2021 Olympic Games. Biles, who won four gold medals in 2016 Rio Games, says she's excited to represent the U.S. again. (July 14) AP Domestic

While the other gymnasts at the United States Olympic Gymnastics Trials pulled out all of their best skills and anxiously fought for the chance to compete at the Tokyo Olympics, Jade Carey was completely calm. That's because Carey's spot on the team was guaranteed 

Carey will be one of the first athletes to take advantage of the FIG's new team structure when she competes as an individual in Tokyo. A vault and floor exercise specialist, Carey should give the U.S. extra opportunities to bring home a medals in the individual event finals as the team attempts to win its third consecutive gold medal in the all-around.

This year, the FIG, which governs international gymnastics, decided to alter the team structure for the Olympics. Rather than five team members as it has been since 2012, the FIG decided to reduce the team roster to four spots and add up to two individual competitors per team. The goal of this change was to create more room at the Games for event specialists and smaller countries. Carey earned one of those individual spots and will compete for the United States but not in the team all-around competition.  

Carey clinched an individual spot over a year ago because of her performances at a series of international gymnastics meets called the Apparatus World Cup. The FIG has held World Cups since 2018, and Carey scored enough points with her victories at the meets to win the overall Apparatus World Cup title on both floor exercise and vault. That gave her an automatic qualification to the Olympics.

Carey was born on May 27, 2000 and is 21 years old.

Carey was born and raised in Phoenix, Arizona. She trains under her father Brian at the Arizona Sunrays gym, also located in Phoenix.

The Tokyo Games are Carey's first Olympics, so she does not currently hold any Olympic medals. However, she has won four world championship medals: one gold and three silvers. She won silver on vault and floor exercise at the 2017 World Championships, and added a team gold and another silver on vault in 2019.

The most-decorated Olympic gymnast of all time is Larisa Latynina, who competed in three Olympic Games from 1956–1964. She won 18 medals, nine of which were gold. Shannon Miller has won the most Olympic medals for the United States in gymnastics with seven across the 1992 and 1996 Olympics. Simone Biles has won more medals than any American in a single Olympics with five, and she holds the gymnastics world record for the most gold medals in a single Games with four.

Carey will compete in the qualifying round for the individual all-around July 25 and will likely compete in the individual event finals on vault and floor exercise, her two best events. The vault final will be Aug. 1 and the floor exercise final will be Aug. 2.

Carey committed to Oregon State University in 2017 but deferred her enrollment to 2021 to continue training for the Tokyo Olympics. She will compete on the Beavers' gymnastics team, which finished the 2021 season ranked No. 21 in the nation.

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