By Helen Regan, Adam Renton, Tara John, Florence Davey-Attlee and Ed Upright, CNN
Updated 12:01 a.m. ET, January 12, 2021
2:02 p.m. ET, January 11, 2021
BioNTech CEO cannot yet get the vaccine he helped develop
From CNN’s Naomi Thomas
Ugur Sahin, CEO of BioNTech, the German company that partnered with Pfizer to make a Covid-19 vaccine, said on Monday that he has not yet received his Covid-19 vaccine.
But Sahin said he hopes to have his team members vaccinated in the coming weeks.
“We are not yet allowed to take our vaccine, but we found a way to make the vaccine available also to the manufacturing teams and we will hopefully get the team members — and maybe myself also — vaccinated in the coming weeks,” Sahin told CNBC’s Meg Tirrell on Squawk Box.
1:48 p.m. ET, January 11, 2021
Covid-19 cases continue to rise in New Jersey, likely due to holiday gatherings
From CNN's Evan Simko-Bednarski
The spread of coronavirus is increasing, New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy said Monday, likely due to indoor, maskless gatherings around the December holidays.
Murphy announced 5,042 new Covid-19 cases on Monday, and 51 additional deaths.
"This is what we were afraid of – people letting their guard down over Christmas and New Years," he said.
Hospitalizations in the state are holding steady, with 3,653 people hospitalized with confirmed or suspected Covid-19 cases. Of those hospitalized, 649 are in intensive care.
Health Commissioner Judy Persichilli reiterated on Monday that hospitalizations and deaths are so-called "lagging indicators," and may yet go up as a result of infections transmitted last month.
Persichilli added that the state has reported two new cases of Covid-related multi-symptom inflammatory syndrome in children.
According to the governor, there have been 214,443 doses of Covid-19 vaccine distributed statewide, and 14,984 of those were administered as a second dose. Nearly 15,000 people have received a full course of vaccine statewide.
Note: These numbers were released by the state’s health agency, and may not line up exactly in real time with CNN’s database drawn from Johns Hopkins University and the Covid Tracking Project.
1:59 p.m. ET, January 11, 2021
Nearly 9 million people vaccinated against coronavirus in the US, CDC says
From CNN’s Jamie Gumbrecht
Nearly 9 million people have received their first doses of vaccine against coronavirus in the United States and nearly 25.5 million doses of vaccine have now been distributed, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Monday.
As of Monday morning, 35.3% of doses distributed have been administered, compared with 30.2% on Friday.
The CDC said 25,480,725 doses of vaccine had been distributed as of 9 a.m. Monday and 8,987,322 people had received their first doses of vaccine.
The CDC also said Monday that 4,239,775 of the distributed doses had gone to the federal program for long-term care facilities, and 937,028 people in such facilities had received their first doses.
The US continues to struggle to catch up to the promised target of 20 million people vaccinated by the end of 2020. States have said they don’t have enough staff or money to administer coronavirus vaccines at the needed rate.
1:15 p.m. ET, January 11, 2021
States increasingly dumping CDC recommendations in giving out coronavirus vaccines, analysis finds
From CNN’s Maggie Fox
States are increasingly abandoning guidelines from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and taking their own approaches to giving people coronavirus vaccines, a new analysis finds.
“Overall, we find states are increasingly diverging from CDC guidance and from each other, suggesting that access to COVID-19 vaccines in these first months of the U.S. vaccine campaign may depend a great deal on where one lives,” the non-profit Kaiser Family Foundation, which studies health care policy, said in a report issued Monday.
“In addition, timelines vary significantly across states, regardless of priority group, resulting in a vaccine roll-out labyrinth across the country.”
The report finds 40 states are still in Phase 1a either fully or partly. Ten states and Washington, DC, are in Phase 1b. Only Michigan has moved to at least part of Phase 1c.
While all states and Washington, DC, are giving priority to health care workers and long-term care residents and staff in Phase 1a of their plans as recommended, they are increasingly taking their own tacks in Phase 1b and 1c of the rollout. Ten states and Washington, DC, have moved to Phase 1b.
For Phase 1b, the CDC recommends vaccinating people ages 75 and older and frontline essential workers such as firefighters, postal workers, teachers and others.
For Phase 1c, the CDC recommends vaccinating people ages 65 and older, younger people with high risk conditions and other essential workers.
The Kaiser analysis found that 10 states have added first responders, including law enforcement and firefighters, the Phase 1a. These states are Arkansas, Georgia, Indiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Hampshire, South Dakota, Virginia, and Wyoming. Utah added K-12 teachers and child care workers, while Louisiana limited health care workers to hospital staff only.
Four states added seniors to the 1a group: people 65 and older in Georgia and Florida, 75 and up in Tennessee, and 80-plus in West Virginia.
Fourteen states follow CDC advice precisely on who should be in Phase 1b, while 30 add extra age groups and others including educators, prisoners and the homeless.
1:05 p.m. ET, January 11, 2021
UK health secretary says it's unclear if being vaccinated reduces the risk of transmitting Covid-19
From CNN's Schams Elwazer
British Health Secretary Matt Hancock said it was still unclear the extent to which being vaccinated reduces one’s risk of transmitting coronavirus.
"We know that the vaccine reduces your chances of getting Covid and then of being hospitalized or dying from Covid," Hancock said.
"What we don’t yet know… is how much you might transmit Covid – even if you don’t suffer from the disease – after you’ve had the vaccine."
"We very much hope that it has a significant downward impact on that transmissibility after you are vaccinated," he added.
Hancock made the comments at a news briefing Monday where he announced that approximately 2.3 million people have already been vaccinated across the UK.
1:07 p.m. ET, January 11, 2021
New York governor calls federal response to Covid-19 "an act of gross negligence"
From CNN's Sonia Moghe
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo delivered his annual State of the State address from the Capitol’s War Room, saying the setting was fitting because "we are at war, a war that continues today" with Covid-19.
"This is a national challenge. It is a war," Cuomo said. "And like every war before, it must be financed by Washington."
He placed blame on the federal government for the state’s damage from Covid-19, calling the federal government’s response to the virus "an act of gross negligence."
"New York’s damage from Covid is legally and ethically created by the federal government," Cuomo said. "New York unlike any other state had no notice and no time to prepare for the attack. As soon as we found out, the Covid enemy was already amongst us and had been coming for months."
Cuomo said the state’s main areas of focus for the coming year are "crushing Covid" and addressing "the short-term economic consequences for our state." He pressed the federal government to help fund recovery efforts.
Cuomo will expand on his plans for the state in three more speeches in the coming days.
12:39 p.m. ET, January 11, 2021
The UK has vaccinated almost 2.3 million people
From CNN's Niamh Kennedy
Around 2.3 million people have already been vaccinated across the UK, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said Monday.
“So far across the UK, we've given 2.6 million doses to 2.3 million people, and we’ve protected more people through vaccinations than all the countries in Europe put together,” Hancock said at a Downing Street briefing.
Hancock said the UK was on track to deliver a first dose of the vaccine to “everyone in the top four cohorts” – which account for 88% of Covid-19-related deaths – by Feb.15.
He said that two-fifths of people over 80 and almost quarter of older care home residents have now received first dose of the coronavirus vaccine.
12:12 p.m. ET, January 11, 2021
No obligation to supply Covid vaccines to West Bank and Gaza, says Israel’s health minister
From CNN's Andrew Carey and Abeer Salman in Jerusalem, Maija Ehlinger in Atlanta and Mary Ilyushina in Moscow
Israel’s Health Minister has told CNN he does not believe Israel has an obligation or responsibility to supply Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza with a vaccine for the coronavirus but stressed instead co-operation on treatment to avoid a surge in new cases of Covid-19 in the Palestinian territories.
Yuli Edelstein’s comments come after the World Health Organization (WHO) said it had held informal discussions with Israel’s Health Ministry regarding the possible supply of vaccines for the Palestinian health workforce as an “immediate priority target group.”
“We are cooperating with the Palestinians to make sure that they get proper treatment to coronavirus patients. At this stage we are not supplying vaccines, but we do understand that it is in Israel's interest to make sure we don't get into a situation where we are vaccinated and out of trouble, and on the Palestinian side there is another surge in numbers," Edelstein said on CNN’s New Day.
Israel is leading the world in vaccinating its people, with almost 20% of the population having received at least one dose of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine. But it has come under criticism from some human rights groups which say it has obligations under international law to provide vaccines to Palestinians as well.
Amnesty International, for instance, said last week: “The Israeli government must stop ignoring its international obligations as an occupying power and immediately act to ensure that COVID-19 vaccines are equally and fairly provided to Palestinians living under its occupation in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.”
Groups like Amnesty point to the Fourth Geneva Convention which, among other duties of an occupying power, speaks of ensuring “measures necessary to combat the spread of contagious diseases and epidemics.”
Israel argues that the Oslo Accords, signed with the Palestinians in the 1990s, hand responsibility for health care provision for Palestinians living in the West Bank and Gaza to the Palestinian Authority (PA).
The Director General of the Public Health Directorate at the Palestinian Ministry of Health told CNN the PA had not sought Israel’s assistance with vaccines, something that was contradicted by the President of the Union of Medical Relief Committees, Mustafa Barghouti, himself a leading Palestinian politician. He told CNN reports the PA had sought about 10,000 doses for health care workers were correct. Barghouti said the request had been rejected by Israel.
The WHO said it was told the Israeli Health Ministry was ready to “explore the option” of immediate vaccines for medical workers in the Palestinian territories but had been told it was “currently not in a position to supply vaccines because of a shortage of vaccines in Israel.”
Edelstein told CNN: "It is our interest; it doesn't mean in any way it is our obligation or our responsibility. The Palestinians are running the Palestinian Authority … but as has been happening for the last several months, we were always ready to help with equipment, with good advice, with products or with medicine, and this sort of cooperation will continue."
The Palestinian Health Ministry said Monday it had registered the Russian Sputnik V vaccine for what it called emergency use, with an initial batch expected to arrive in the territories within a month, according to the Russian Direct Investment Fund, which sponsored the vaccine’s development. The Health Ministry says it has also signed contracts with three other Covid-19 vaccine suppliers.
11:41 a.m. ET, January 11, 2021
UK to "rapidly scale up" Covid-19 vaccination operation
From CNN's Lindsay Isaac
The United Kingdom plans to have "tens of millions" of people immunized by spring with over 2,700 vaccine sites established across the country, the Department of Health said on Monday.
It has set out plans to "rapidly scale up" the vaccine programme, pledging to have capacity to deliver "at least two million" vaccinations in England per week by the end of January at over 2,700 sites in the UK.
Every adult in the country is to be offered a vaccine according to a press release and 10,000 care homes will have access to a vaccine by end of the month, it says.
"The next few months will present a significant opportunity to turn the tide of battle against Covid – I am looking forward to watching these plans bring more reassurance and hope back to people’s lives after a difficult year," British Health Secretary Matt Hancock said. Hancock is expected to announce the plan to expedite vaccinations later on Monday during a daily government press briefing.