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tv   BBC News  BBC News  December 3, 2020 11:00pm-11:31pm GMT

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this is bbc news with the latest headlines for viewers in the uk and around the world. i'm kasia madera. in an exclusive interview with this channel, the man leading the american fight against the coronavirus, dr anthony fauci, sets the record straight on what he thinks about the uk decision to approve the new pfizer coronavirus vaccine. i have a great deal of confidence in what the uk does, both scientifically and from a regulatory standpoint. if i somehow came across differently, i apologise for that. the first doses of the newly approved pfizer vaccine have arrived in the uk. the roll—out begins next week. california issues stay—at—home orders for when hospitals approach breaking point as new covid cases threaten to overwhelm them.
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hello and welcome whether you're watching in the uk or around the world. we start with an apology from america's top infectious diseases expert dr anthony fauci after he criticised uk regulators over their rapid approval of a new coronavirus vaccine. britain on wednesday became the first country in the world to approve the pfizer—biontech vaccine for mass use. speaking earlier to cbs, dr fauci said the uk was not as rigorous as the us in its vaccine approval process. but when he spoke to my colleagues earlier on this channel, dr fauci backtracked. first of all, there really has been a misunderstanding and for that, i am sorry a misunderstanding and for that, i am sorry and i apologise for that. i do have great faith in both the
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scientific community and the regulatory community at the uk, and anyone who knows me and my relationship with that over literally decades know that's the case. the point i was really trying to make, i did not make it well, which is why i welcome to the opportunity to get on your show and say i came out wrong. in the united states, there is such a considerable amount of tension of pushing back on the credibility of the safety and efficacy that if we in the united states had done it as quickly as the uk did it, and that's nojudgement on the way uk did it, and even though my statements did come across looking that way, if we had a, for example, approved it yesterday or tomorrow, there likely would have been pushed back on and already scrutinising society that has
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really, i think in the united states, too much scepticism about the process. so, when we have conversations, and i just the process. so, when we have conversations, and ijust had a recent conversation with the uk station, the first thing they said was we beat you to it, we won the race. and i wanted to get the point, this is not a race where there is one winner and one good one and one bad one. it's a bunch of companies and a bunch of countries trying as best as possible to get vaccines to their citizens as quickly and as —— as they could possibly... we are trying to do that in the united states, but our process is one that ta kes states, but our process is one that takes more time then was taken with the uk, and that isjust takes more time then was taken with the uk, and that is just the reality. i did not mean to imply any sloppiness, even though it came out that way. so, if it did, ijust want to set the record straight. i have a great deal of confidence in what the uk does, both scientifically and
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from a regulatory standpoint. if i somehow came from a regulatory standpoint. if i somehow came across from a regulatory standpoint. if i somehow came across differently, i apologise for that. professor stephen evans, a professor at the london school of hygiene & tropical medicine, listened to dr fauci's apology. here is what he had to say. well, he's a great man. he's a great scientist and he's a champion of truth, as you say on your bbc news logo. he is somebody who i have respected for as long as... i don't know him personally and i really respect him for the way he has responded. i think that is exactly what most of us in the uk thought. that is that the fda's way of doing things, they are doing it as quickly as is right for them and the uk
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process has been able in these special circumstances to move more rapidly. not because of brexit, not because we're out of the eu, but simply because of the particular circumstances that we face now. and i think that this pandemic has amplified so many things, both good and bad. professor evans giving his reaction. the furore over dr fauci's comments comes as the first doses of the newly—approved pfizer vaccine have arrived in the uk. they've been taken to a secret location from where they'll be distributed to hospitals across the country over the next few days. the first phase of the roll—out programme is expected to begin on tuesday. the total number of britons who have died with the virus has now passed 60,000. here's our health editor, hugh pym. he was the soulmate to my grandmother, he was my best friend. he put a smile on anyone's faces he met and he brought sunshine on the rainy days. 0livia remembers happier times with her granddad, gary.
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he died in hospital with covid. he did have underlying health issues, but he was just 61. his funeral was on tuesday. before he passed away, we were able to say goodbye on facetime. and as much as it was lovely we were able to say goodbye that way, i just wish we were able to hold his hand and let him know it was ok. mickey died last month, after being diagnosed with covid. his family say he'll be much missed in the community. he wasn't in bad health leading up to contracting covid. his daughter—in—law anna said he was a local bristol legend. the speed of it, the shock of it has left us all absolutely devastated. we're reeling from it. we can't believe it's happened. he was larger than life and i always say i thought he would outlive all of us. all this a reminder of the cruel reality of covid and why vaccine doses like these are so important. some have been brought into the uk
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on eurotunnel from the manufacturer pfizer's plant in belgium. phase one of the roll—out will start next week, and health leaders are encouraged. if we can get through the phase one and it's a highly effective vaccine and there is very, very high uptake, then we could, in theory, take out 99% of hospitalisations and deaths. some major hospitals, like this one, have been designated as vaccine centres. it's understood that the policy in england will require them to prioritise patients who are 80 or over, for example those coming in for appointments. nhs staff and care home workers will be invited in for theirjabs. the first minister said scotland's vaccinations would start on tuesday. that will be a significant landmark in our collective struggle against the virus and although we still have difficult months ahead, the awareness that vaccination is starting will, i'm sure, make many of us feel more hopeful
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as we enter the christmas period. for the families of mickey and gary, there are mixed feelings after news that the vaccine is about to become a reality. he was only 61. maybe he could have had longer, and i can't look at the vaccine knowing we couldn't save him. it's too late for him. you know, i can only implore everybody that is offered the vaccine to take it, because you do not want to find yourself, or a precious loved family member like mickey, in a similar situation. the vaccine is on its way. military and nhs staff have been setting up specialist hubs, like this one at ashton gate stadium in bristol, but the wider population may have to wait a little while to get their chance to have it. hugh pym, bbc news. hard on the heels of the uk's approval of the pfizer vaccine, other countries are now accelerating
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their inoculation plans. france said it would ensure free covid—i9 vaccinations for all. prime ministerjean castex said he had earmarked some 1.5 billion euros to cover the cost. portugal also plans to vaccinate people free of charge. the country wants 10% of the population inoculated during the first phase of vaccinations starting next month. in canada, health authorities have indicated they could approve the pfizer coronavirus vaccine within the next week, allowing distribution to start in early 2021. the united states has recorded its highest ever daily death toll from coronavirus, more than 2,800 people in a single day. 100,000 people are in hospital being treated for the disease, in a country which already has the highest global death toll. the governor of california has announced plans for stay—at—home orders in areas where intensive care units are filling up.
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gavin newsom gave a stark update on the state's figures. the hospitalisations now have increased 86% just in the last 1a days. and icu admissions, 67% over a similar period of time. we've seen death rate increase significantly over the course of the last number of weeks. just take a look at the slide. a month ago on november 2, we reported tragic loss of 1a lives related to this pandemic. in the last 2a hours similar to the previous 2a hours we've reported back to back days with 113 deaths. just in the last 1a days close to 1000 californians have lost their lives due to covid—19. 0ur correspondent sophie long joins me now from los angeles.
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sophie, the figures are actually start. tell us how people are reacting to the order —— absolutely start. we've heard gavin newsom setting out those grim figures and why he's had to take this decisive action. what he stops short of a little earlier today was imposing a state wide lockdown which some people have been anticipating. what he's done is put in place regional stay—at—home orders in places where intensive care units are more than 85% full. there is some limited relief but there is not a state wide lockdown but people really resigned to the fact that this has to take place. those figures are graham and the fear is here that they're only going to get works. —— figures are graham. —— get worse. those hospital admissions don't reflect yet the travel and gatherings that took
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place exactly a week ago. we are expecting to see the impact of those, so we been speaking to people out and about in los angeles, and here there was an emergency order with an immediate effect put in last night by the mayor. most people are very alarmed last night. it's a 12 page order and lots of detail, and when you look at the first few pages, it showed that perhaps you weren't able to leave your house on foot by car. when you look at the longest of exceptions, not quite as severe. people say they understand the reason why the restrictions were put in place, some of them think they are necessary, others think they are necessary, others think they are necessary, others think they are over—the—top, but even people who thought they were necessary we re people who thought they were necessary were out and about, walking their dogs and with their children, so not everyone is staying home and a code. we are waiting to see the impact of thanksgiving, but we have evidence that these restrictions are slowing the spread?
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know, i think in terms of the restrictions that were announced earlier today haven't come into effect yet. the stay—at—home order announced last night has only been in operation for a few hours, although it's not that different to what was put in place earlier this week. but the short answer is no, there is no evidence. what we see at there is no evidence. what we see at the moment is all the figures is here in california. they are currently recording a new case rate of more than double what it was a month ago, so extremely worrying. when we heard from avenue some, he said we are at a tipping point and if they don't take decisive action, they are in danger of hospital being overwhelmed —— heard from gavin newsom. we seen those new restrictions today that a stay—at—home order will come into place in the areas where intensive ca re place in the areas where intensive care units are more than 85% full, and that's not just care units are more than 85% full, and that's notjust it, of course. most businesses here in california are gradually —— have gradually open
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their doors. they will have to close them once more, so another blow to them once more, so another blow to the world's fifth—largest economy, already reeling from the impact of colour 19. —— covid—19. a vaccine could hopefully be on the rise and $0011. could hopefully be on the rise and soon. sophie, thanks so much for bringing us up to date. let's get some of the day's other news. facebook has said it will remove false claims about covid—19 vaccines from its platforms over the coming weeks. the social media giant said it has already removed misinformation on facebook and instagram involving claims about the origin and treatment of the virus. it's not clear whether similar posts will be removed from its encrypted whatsapp service. talks between european and british negotiators are going on late into the night again. this was food for them arriving a little earlier. urgent compromises are being sought in key areas, including fishing rights and competition rules.
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it's expected that eu's lead negotiator michael barnier will go back to brussels on friday to brief leaders on the state of play. four people have died in an explosion at a water treatment plant in the uk. one other person was injured in the blast, which ripped the top off a chemical tank at the site near bristol. fire crews and police were called to the scene and a major incident has been declared. bangladesh has begun removing hundreds of rohingya refugees to a remote island, which aid agencies say is prone to flooding. buses carrying the refugees have left the district. the government wants to relocate 100,000 refugees to reduce contraction in the council. the move has been described as short—sighted. the
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vaccines are on their way but for how long will they give us immunity? we'll be addressing that and other key questions as the battle against the virus enters a new stage. it's quite clear that the worst victims of this disaster are the poor people living in the slums which have sprung up around the factory. i'm feeling so helpless that the children are dying in front of me and i can't do anything. charles manson is the mystical leader of the hippy cult suspected of killing sharon tate and at least six other people in los angeles. at 11:00 this morning, just half a metre of rock separated britain from continental europe. it took the drills just a few moments to cut through the final obstacle and then a miner
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from calais was shaking hands and exchanging flags with his opposite number from dover. this is bbc news, the latest headlines... the us doctor leading the fight against coronavirus has apologised for appearing to question the speed with which britain approved a vaccine. the first doses of the newly approved pfizer vaccine have arrived in the uk. the roll—out begins next week. more now on coronavirus in the us, where president—electjoe biden has warned that the us could see an additional 250,000 deaths by january. i'm joined now by dr leora horwitz, associate professor of population
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health and medicine at the nyu grossman school of medicine. it's just a very stark warning when you hear figures like that from the president—elect. put it into contacts president—elect. put it into co nta cts for president—elect. put it into contacts for us, because of course, the united states leading the world with the number of deaths so far from this virus. yeah, the situation in many parts of the us right now is quite grim. as you spoke about before, we have 200,000 new cases every day. yesterday, we talked 100,000 hospitalisations, 2800 more deaths. it's quite stark and as you mentioned, we haven't even yet really begun to see the impact of thanksgiving travel and get—togethers from last week, so it's very concerning. what is, as a professional in your opinion, what could be done to try and get a handle on this? what's the first
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thing you would advise people to do? everyone should wear a mask at all times. there are many things we can do to reduce the spread and reduce the severity of the disease. we should be avoiding eating and site and restaurants, that is clearly now we understand from the science, the riskiest of activities. you are in a close space, speaking loudly, i can't wear a mask because you are eating. we should be avoiding that. —— you can't wear a mask. we should avoid large crowds in general and stay as best we can in our own households. we should be consistent about our behaviour. sometimes we think our neighbours are fine, we canjust think our neighbours are fine, we can just have a think our neighbours are fine, we canjust have a drink think our neighbours are fine, we can just have a drink with them. no, we have to be consistent. especially because vaccine is on the horizon, so because vaccine is on the horizon, so it's more important so we don't
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get the disease at all. we heard the warning from the president—elect regarding the additional deaths by january. a quarter of a million. at the moment, just explain to us because the number of people who are getting the virus, the number who are dying, it is fewer people now. talk us through the logic of that. it is, and there is a ray of hope here. so, we've shown this and i study in our own health system —— a study. the proportion of people are dying is lower now. that's in part, we think, because we now understand how to take care of this disease in ways we didn't understand before. we know to put people on their stomachs, to avoid blood clots, to watch oxidant levels early. 0ur treatments are better —— oxidant levels. up until just treatments are better —— oxidant levels. up untiljust now, our health systems were less overcrowded. in the spring in the northeast, we were inundated with
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cases. we had to pull in people from other specialties to take care of patients. up until recently, we are not doing that any more in the us, but now that are places, there are states in the country that are also being pushed to the brink. that can make the death race right is again, so make the death race right is again, so it could get work —— death rate rise again. we've been hearing anthony fauci clarify his comments regarding that he has full confidence in the uk's procedures when it comes to approving this a pfizer vaccine. where is the united states in terms of getting a vaccine approved and when it comes to the roll—out, how efficient will that be? the fda is reviewing all the materials for pfizer as we speak. i think 24/7. materials for pfizer as we speak. i think 21w. they'll be meeting in a week or two. to decide about approval, and it should be approved
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shortly thereafter. as soon as approval is in place, vaccination can begin. states are already making plans, some more elaborate and detailed than others, and there is already been a pre—assignment made of the distribution of the doses we have on hand. so, there is a lots of movement to be vaccinated quickly, but we don't have that much supply yet and so it will take months and months and months for a meaningful proportion of people to be vaccinated, even with all due speed. that's why we have to maintain our vigilance until then, wearing a mask, avoiding restaurants and so on. wise words. doctor horovitz, thank you so much. thank you for having me. it may be many months before any
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resume with of normal life returns. scientists say we will be living with restrictions on our lives for some time to come. 0ur science editor david shukman looks at the new vaccines and the way ahead. a gloomy afternoon, though at least there's now a pathway out of the pandemic, with the prospect of the first vaccine to keep people safe. so, what questions remain unanswered? well, the first is, how long will immunity last after you have been vaccinated? well, that's still not clear. studies show that the injections, three weeks apart, massively reduce the severity of the disease, but scientists don't know if that protection keeps going. we have no clear idea at the moment about how long natural immunity, so immunity following the infection with the virus, or indeed immunity that's been generated through vaccination, how long it will last. we would certainly hope it will last several months, if not years. so, it's possible we'll an annual vaccination, as with the winter flu. all this has to be worked out.
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next, will the vaccine stop the spread of the virus? if you've had the vaccine, you could still carry the virus without knowing and maybe pass it to people around you if they've yet to have theirjabs. that's because the vaccine will be injected into the arm to create antibodies to fight the effects of the disease. but the virus itself may still be present in the nose and throat. so, it's possible that someone vaccinated may be able to infect others. no one can yet be sure. it could be that the vaccination could allow the virus to carry on replicating in the nose but not actually causing symptoms, and that could mean that, actually, you can still be a vector, despite having been vaccinated and despite being personally protected. then there's the question of how many people need to have the vaccine. the more infectious the virus, the more it matters to get a high proportion of the population vaccinated — at least
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90% for measles, more like 66% for covid. the more people who can receive the vaccine and get it, the less the virus has a chance to spread in the community, and therefore we minimise the risk to those vulnerable people in whom the vaccine doesn't really work as well as it might. so, getting the vaccine once it's available is something you can really do to help protect other people, as well as protecting yourself. so, everything hinges on making sure as many people as possible say yes to the vaccine, and until they've had it to keep following the guidance about staying safe. david shukman, bbc news. now, some incredible images we have just received of something which actually happened a couple of days ago. on tuesday a huge radio telescope in puerto rico collapsed after decades of helping astronomers to learn more about our universe. the arecibo 0bservatory telescope —
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one of the largest in the world — had been in operation for 57 years, but had already been closed after engineers warned the structure was no longer safe. it was made famous as the backdrop for a scene in the james bond film goldeneye. not quite the ending for 007. hello, the weather is giving us a real taste of winter. there is some more snow in the forecast for friday and it's a real mix of rain, sleet and snow that will be filing from the sky. it will be cold and windy, and this big area of low pressure is really dominating the weather across western europe. bands of wet weather spiralling around and cold air being sucked down from the north, so that combination, cold air and wet weather, that is why we're seeing sleet and snow. across scotland, snow falling for a time to the quite low level. they could even be a brief covering of snow through the central about an over high ground, 10-20 central about an over high ground, 10—20 cm of snow is possible. real
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travel problems especially with some ice in western scotland, tonight possible in northern ireland as well —— some ice possible. showers through wales and the southwest and this band of rain could contain some sleet and wet snow over high ground across parts of eastern england. and these various bands of wet weather will continue to circulate our area of low pressure, most of the snow becoming confined to the highest ground, rain at lower levels, a lot of rain piling into eastern scotland. that could cause one or two problems. something brighter toward the south. it will be windy with gusts around the coast out west of 50 mph or more, and it will be cold. highs between 4—7 . we will see further areas of wet weather with some sleet and snow mixed in over the hills as we go through friday night. but the weekend is a story of things very, very slowly calming down. it will turn drier, but it will stay cold. 0n
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calming down. it will turn drier, but it will stay cold. on saturday, there will still be some showers around which could again contain some sleet and snow over high ground, particularly over the scottish mountains. more dry weather developing through the day, some spells of sunshine. it still going to be chilly with temperatures of five, six or 7 degrees but the winds will fall a little lighter. those winds will continue to fall during saturday night and with very light winds by sunday, there could be some mist and fog around which could be quite full to —— slow to clear. many spots will see some spells of sunshine, just a few showers but still feeling cold with highs of 4-7 .
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this is bbc world news, the headlines. the us doctor leading the fight against coronavirus has apologised for appearing to question the speed with which britain approved a vaccine. dr anthony fauci said all he had intended to do was to highlight the differences between the processes in the two countries. president electjoe biden said he will ask doctor fosse to remain in his post after he takes office. he would also ask american to wear a mask for 100 days. he would also ask american to wear a mask for 100 days. the first doses of the newly approved pfizer vaccine have arrived in the uk — the roll out begins next week. meanwhile france has said it would ensure free vaccinations for all. california has issued stay—at —home orders for when hospitals come close to running out of emergency capacity as new covid cases threaten to overwhelm then. for most of the state that's expected to be


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