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Masks Are ‘Most Important, Powerful Public Health Tool,’: Live Covid-19 Updates


India’s overall caseload surpassed five million on Tuesday, less than a month after hitting the three million mark.

More than 82,000 coronavirus patients have died in India, but, per capita, the country has had far fewer deaths than many others. Doctors say this reflects India’s younger and leaner population.

India reported 90,123 new cases on Tuesday, and its seven-day daily average of new cases is more than 92,000.

The country took a hard line early, placing all of its citizens under a national lockdown that was considered largely effective, and was widely obeyed. Restrictions began being lifted in May as economic pressures led its leaders to prioritize reopenings and accept the risks of surging coronavirus infections.

But the country’s public health system is severely strained, and some sick patients cannot find hospital beds. Crowded cities, lockdown fatigue and a lack of contact tracing are contributing factors for the virus’s spread, which has reached every corner of the country of 1.3 billion people.

India’s total caseload has become the world’s second-largest, behind that of the United States.

In other developments around the world

  • The Jerusalem Great Synagogue will remain closed over the Jewish high holidays for the first time in its more than half-century of history. Israel’s infection rates have spiraled to among the worst in the world, and the government has mandated a second, nationwide lockdown to begin Friday afternoon, hours before the eve of the Jewish New Year holiday, and to last at least three weeks, extending to the last day of Yom Kippur and the festival Sukkot.

  • A health official from Madrid’s regional government warned that the capital was preparing to impose “selective lockdowns” in districts where the number of cases has recently risen significantly. The minister, Antonio Zapatero, said that the region needed “to flatten the curve” urgently, before the arrival of colder weather that could help spread the virus faster. Spain registered an average of 8,000 new cases a day over the past week, about a third of them in Madrid.

  • Six months after locking down the country to curb the spread of the virus, Nepal is starting to welcome back trekkers and mountaineers. The decision is aimed at reviving the country’s ailing economy, which is heavily dependent on mountain tourism. Trekkers visiting Nepal will be required to produce documentation showing that they tested negative before flying in, and to quarantine before traveling to tourist destinations. The country has reported nearly 60,000 cases, or 208 per 100,000 people, and less than 400 deaths.

Reporting was contributed by Peter Baker, Alan Blinder, Luke Broadwater, Emily Cochrane, Michael Corkery, Melissa Eddy, Rick Gladstone, Anemona Hartocollis, Mike Ives, Isabel Kershner, Andrew E. Kramer, Gina Kolata, Sapna Maheshwari, Patricia Mazzei, Raphael Minder, Benjamin Mueller, Richard C. Paddock, Linda Qiu, Gretchen Reynolds, Dana Rubinstein, Eliza Shapiro, Bhadra Shrama, Sheryl Gay Stolberg, Glenn Thrush, Marc Tracy, Noah Weiland and Sameer Yasir.

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