Coronavirus Live: World Updates – The New York Times


Britain will start mass testing and contact tracing, but other countries are way ahead.

As the British government prepares to rolls out a large-scale track and trace system designed to prevent a second major wave of infections, other countries’ experiences offer case studies — and cautionary tales.

Starting on Thursday, anyone in Britain who suffers potential symptoms of Covid-19 will be tested and, if positive, be asked to list everyone with whom they have recently been in close contact for at least 15 minutes. Those people, in turn, will be contacted and asked to isolate themselves for 14 days.

Britain’s program is the latest in similar campaigns around the world that serve as tests of how testing and contact tracing affect transmission of the virus. The results so far are mixed.

South Korea successfully reduced what had been one of the largest outbreaks outside China to a trickle through widespread testing and contact tracing. But recently dozens of new cases have raised fears that another wave of infections is imminent.

South Korea reported 79 new cases on Thursday, the country’s highest daily caseload since April 5. The uptick was due largely to an outbreak in a home delivery logistics center south of Seoul that has reported 69 patients among its workers.

Other countries have prioritized tracing over testing, or vice versa. In Japan, for example, the government limited tests to only the most severe cases and instead focused on contact tracing.

Medical experts worried that Japan’s approach would blind the country to the spread of infection and allow cases to explode, but that hasn’t happened. Japan has one of the lowest mortality rates from Covid-19 among major nations; its medical system has not been overwhelmed; and its government never forced businesses to close, although many did by choice.

This won’t be the year for that. Even before professional play has had a chance to begin in 2020, China’s top leagues have already lost more than a fifth of their teams, the result of longstanding financial woes compounded by the coronavirus shutdown.

The Super League will have 16 teams this year, the association said, with Shenzhen Football Club replacing Tianjin Tianhai in the league’s ranks. A start date to its season still hasn’t been announced.

Some of the Chinese clubs that are out this year began folding months ago, before the epidemic led to the suspension of professional play and ticket sales.

China has no shortage of passionate soccer fans. Emboldened by Mr. Xi’s support for the game, investors have piled into Chinese clubs, helping them spend on expensive foreign talent, including the Brazilian forward known as Hulk. But the three leagues’ popularity has fallen short of owners’ lofty dreams, particularly for lower-division clubs.

For example, Nissan will take the lead on development of autonomous driving technology and Renault will be in charge of developing electric vehicles.

Nissan will be the dominant partner in Japan, China and the United States, while Renault will take the lead in Europe, Russia, Africa and Latin America. Mitsubishi, which is also a member of the alliance, will be in charge of the rest of Asia.

But breaking up was not an option. On the contrary, the pandemic has made it even more essential for the companies to cooperate and share the enormous cost of developing new models and technology.

Global demand for automobiles has gone into free fall during the lockdowns, battering both companies when they were already in a weakened state.

By then, the death toll will have inched higher still. More than 1.6 million people in the country have been infected, and while hard-hit northeastern states have reported decreases in new cases in recent days, and the pace of deaths nationwide has fallen, health experts warn of a possible resurgence as lockdowns are lifted.

Mr. Galante died on March 29 in a Madrid hospital. He was 71. His partner, Justa Montero, said the cause was Covid-19.

Reporting was contributed by Ben Dooley, Jack Ewing, John Schwartz, Amy Qin, Stephen Kurczy, Raphael Minder, Choe Sang-Hun, Mark Landler, Stephen Castle, Andrew Das, Ian Austen, Raymond Zhong and Mike Ives.



Source link