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A lethal hospital hearth in western India within the early hours of Saturday added to the distress within the nation because it battles new world information in a staggering second wave of coronavirus circumstances.

The blaze ripped by way of a Covid-19 ward within the metropolis of Bharuch, killing not less than 18 folks — 16 of them sufferers, two of them well being care staff — officials told local news outlets. Efforts had been underway to find out the hearth’s trigger, and hearth division officers mentioned a brief circuit might need led to the blaze.

The episode got here as america introduced that it will start restricting travel from India subsequent week as a surge of infections and deaths overwhelms the South Asian country, which continued its catastrophic run of record coronavirus transmissions on Saturday with greater than 400,000 new reported circumstances and three,500 deaths. No different nation has surpassed 400,000 reported circumstances in a single day.

The second wave in India has crammed hospitals and left folks dying as they wait to see docs. Kinfolk of the sick are sharing pleas on social media for oxygen, medicine and other scarce supplies. There have been greater than 19 million confirmed circumstances in India and greater than 211,000 deaths, in accordance with a New York Times database. Specialists say the true numbers are probably much higher.

The nation’s well being system — fragile and underfunded even in regular occasions — is exhibiting indicators of pressure. The hearth in Bharuch, in Gujarat State, got here on the heels of a number of latest accidents in Indian hospitals which have claimed the lives of coronavirus sufferers.

A separate hearth this week killed four people at a hospital in Surat, one other metropolis in Gujarat. No less than 22 Covid-19 sufferers died at a hospital a few days earlier in the neighboring state of Maharashtra when a leak lower off their oxygen provide. And two days later, a fire at another hospital in Maharashtra left not less than 13 Covid-19 sufferers useless.

On Saturday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi offered condolences to the households of the victims in Bharuch. Gujarat’s chief minister, Vijay Rupani, mentioned the state authorities would give about $5,300 in help to every sufferer’s household.

The USA joined nations together with Australia, Britain and Canada in curbing journey from India. The U.S. restrictions, that are anticipated to take impact on Tuesday, is not going to apply to residents or everlasting residents of america, their spouses or minor kids or siblings, or to the dad and mom of residents or everlasting residents who’re underneath 21.

These exempt from the ban should nonetheless adjust to earlier requirements for international travelers, together with a destructive take a look at outcome for the virus earlier than touring and once more upon coming into america from India. They have to additionally quarantine if they don’t seem to be vaccinated.

Beginning on Monday, Australia will bar all travelers, together with its personal residents, from coming into if they’ve been in India throughout the earlier two weeks, with violators topic to jail phrases and heavy fines. Officials acknowledged that the measure was “very drastic” however mentioned it was essential to maintain Australians protected.

The USA and different governments have pledged their help to India because it grapples with the world’s gravest coronavirus disaster for the reason that pandemic started. The White Home press secretary, Jen Psaki, mentioned on Friday that navy cargo planes had begun the primary deliveries of emergency provides promised by the Biden administration.

On Saturday, India expanded vaccinations to all folks over age 18, however many states mentioned that they might not be capable to meet the demand because of a lack of doses. Lower than 2 % of India’s 940 million adults have been totally vaccinated, in accordance with a Times database.

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