Denmark, Finland say reopening schools did not worsen outbreak

Denmark reopened schools for students up to fifth grade on April 15. (AFP)
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Updated 28 May 2020

Denmark, Finland say reopening schools did not worsen outbreak

  • Denmark reopened schools for up to fifth grade on April 15
  • Finland allowed students to return to schools on May 14

A partial reopening of Danish schools did not lead to an increase in coronavirus infections among young students, a doctor of infectious disease epidemiology and prevention at the Danish Serum Institute said on Thursday, citing new data.
Denmark was one of the first countries to reopen society on April 15 after a one-month lockdown, allowing students up to fifth grade back in school.
“You cannot see any negative effects from the reopening of schools,” Peter Andersen told Reuters, referring to data updated on Wednesday.
The latest data showed no significant increase in infections among children aged between one and 19 in the weeks after the partial reopening of schools.
“Based on the preliminary experiences that we have had, it has been a prudent way to plan a reopening,” Andersen added.
Finland also has seen no evidence of the coronavirus spreading faster since schools started to reopen in the middle of May, the top health official said on Thursday.
“The time has been short, but so far we have seen no evidence,” Mika Salminen, director of health security at the Finnish Institute of Health and Welfare, told a news conference.
Finland started to reopen schools and daycare centers from May 14 following an almost two-month shutdown.


US to pay over $1bn for 100m doses of J&J’s potential COVID-19 vaccine

Updated 05 August 2020

US to pay over $1bn for 100m doses of J&J’s potential COVID-19 vaccine

  • The latest contract equates to roughly $10 per vaccine dose produced by J&J
  • This is J&J’s first deal to supply its investigational vaccine to a country

WASHINGTON: The United States government will pay Johnson & Johnson over $1 billion for 100 million doses of its potential coronavirus vaccine, its latest such arrangement as the race to tame the pandemic intensifies, the drugmaker said on Wednesday.
It said it would deliver the vaccine to the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) on a not-for-profit basis to be used after approval or emergency use authorization by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
J&J has already received $1 billion in funding from the US government — BARDA agreed in March to provide that money for the company to build manufacturing capacity for more than 1 billion doses of the experimental vaccine.
The latest contract equates to roughly $10 per vaccine dose produced by J&J. Including the first $1 billion deal with the USgovernment, the price would be slightly higher than the $19.50 per dose that the United States is paying for the vaccine being developed by Pfizer Inc. and German biotech BioNTech SE.
The US government may also purchase an additional 200 million doses under a subsequent agreement. J&J did not disclose that deal’s value.
J&J plans to study a one- or two-dose regimen of the vaccine in parallel later this year. A single-shot regimen could allow more people to be vaccinated with the same number of doses and would sidestep issues around getting people to come back for their second dose.
This is J&J’s first deal to supply its investigational vaccine to a country. Talks are underway with the European Union, but no deal has yet been reached.
J&J’s investigational vaccine is currently being tested on healthy volunteers in the United States and Belgium in an early-stage study.
There are currently no approved vaccines for COVID-19. More than 20 are in clinical trials.