WATCH KSAT News Now: Omicron travel ban begins; Cowboys hit with COVID; Pro wrestler joins show – KSAT San Antonio



WATCH KSAT News Now: Omicron travel ban begins; Cowboys hit with COVID; Pro wrestler joins show  KSAT San Antonio



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Racers Hit The Road Again; Travel To UE Tuesday


Women’s Basketball | 11/28/2021 5:34:00 PM

Date (Time): Nov. 30 (6 p.m.)
Opponent: Evansville
Site (Venue): Evansville, Ind. (Meeks Family Fieldhouse)
Audio: Froggy 103.7 FM (PxP: Jeremy Rose; Analyst: Raegan Blackburn)
TV: ESPN+ (PxP: Cole Carter; Analyst: Donovan Schultz; Sideline: Arthur Hurst)
Live Stats: GoRacers.com
Twitter In Game: @RacersWBB
MUR Record (Streak): 5-1 (Won 4)
UE Record (Streak): 4-1 (Won 1)
MSU Last Game: W 66-40 vs. Alabama A&M (Nov. 27, 2021; Murray, Ky.)
UE Last Game: W 84-71 at Purdue Fort Wayne (Nov. 24, 2021; Fort Wayne, Ind.)
All-Time Series vs. UE (Streak): MSU leads 22-15 (Won 2)
All-Time Series in Murray (Streak): MSU leads 12-6 (Won 1)
First Meeting: W 46-41 (Feb. 26, 1972; Murray, Ky.)
Last Meeting: W 84-61(Dec. 1, 2020; Murray, Ky.)
Largest MSU Win: W 114-46 (Feb. 10, 1981; Murray, Ky.)
Largest MSU Loss: L 46-78 (Dec. 20, 2011; Evansville, Ind.)
Last Five vs. UE: 3-2 (WWWLL)
Next Game: Dec. 4 at Samford (2 p.m.)
Next Home Game: Dec. 14 vs. North Alabama (5 p.m.)

The Game

The Murray State women’s basketball team hits the highway again Tuesday for the first of two road games beginning at Evansville. Tip-off from the Meeks Family Fieldhouse in Evansville, Indiana is scheduled for 6 p.m.

Series At A Glance

Tuesday will be the 39th meeting between the Racers and the Purple Aces, with Murray State leading the all-time series, 23-15. MSU has won each of the last three meetings between the two teams and also lead the series in Evansville, 10-9.

Scouting The Purple Aces

Evansville is also off to a hot start to the season and will enter Tuesday’s matchup at 4-1 after an 84-71 win at Purdue Fort Wayne Wednesday. The Purple Aces are currently averaging 77.4 points on 44.5-percent shooting with 39.8 rebounds per game, while their opponents average 64.8 points on 34.6-percent shooting with 44.2 rebounds per game.

Evansville currently has four players that average double-digits including two that are averaging 20-plus points per game. Je’Niya Davis and Abby Feit currently score 24.5 and 21.6 points per game, while Myia Clark and A’Niah Griffin follow at 11.0 and 10.3 points, respectively. In addition, Feit also leads Evansville on the glass at 9.8 rebounds per game.

A Win Would…

A win Tuesday would give head coach Rechelle Turner the 60th win of her career and allow her to pass Dew Drop Rowlett to become the 4th winningest coach in program history. She would also become the second fastest Racer coach to reach 60 wins, doing so in 124 games. The only former Racer coach who reached 60 wins faster was Bud Childers, who did it in 113 games.

Cleaning The Glass

Murray State currently ranks second in the nation in defensive rebounds per game with 34.7 defensive boards per game, while Nebraska leads at 36.3.

En Fuego

Shooting 50.0-percent from the floor against Alabama A&M, Murray State has now shot 50-percent or better in five of six games this season and are 4-1 in those contests.

Double Trouble

Katelyn Young recorded her third double-double of the season against Alabama A&M, and second in a row, with 25 points and 11 rebounds. In addition, she was nearly perfect from the floor going 10-for-11 in the game, as well as 5-for-7 from the line.

Large In The Margins

With a 26-point win Saturday, each of Murray State’s five victories have come by 20 or more points. In the five wins, Murray State’s average margin of victory has been 30.0 with no wins coming by less than 23 points.

Flying Out of The Gates

Moving to 5-1 on the year with the win Saturday, the Racers are now off to their best start in over 30 years. The last time MSU started the season 5-1 or better was the 1988-89 season, when it opened the season at 6-0.



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Drivers hit the road for last-minute errands and Thanksgiving travel


As families scramble to whip together delicious Thanksgiving meals, others are still hitting the road, running errands and trying to reach their destination to spend as much time with loved ones as possible.

This morning, News 12‘s Hannah Kliger was along the Belt Parkway to check out the traffic.

AAA says of all the travelers getting around the country the last few days – 90% of them are expected to be drivers.

Take extra care if you’re out on the roads the next few days – AAA predicts that nearly 400,000 drivers could become stranded over the holiday due to car malfunctions. Always best to check those things in advance before you head out for that long drive.



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A ‘potentially significant’ storm could hit the East Coast during the busy Thanksgiving travel week


A significant storm has the potential to disrupt travel plans from the Midwest to the Northeast during one of the busiest times of the year to travel. We are talking about disruptions at major airline hubs like Chicago and New York at the beginning of next week.

The storm system could begin to develop Sunday in the Midwest, strengthening daily. By the time it gets near the East Coast on Tuesday, a secondary system could develop along the coast, exacerbating the disrupting weather conditions in places like New York.

“It is too early to resolve detailed effects from low pressure that may be near the East Coast by next Tuesday, but significant rain/snow and strong winds could be possible,” the WPC says.

“Even though we are still almost a week out and forecasts can change, this looks like a planes, trains and automobiles storm,” CNN meteorologist Chad Myers says.

Here is a look at where some of the worst travel disruptions could happen, based on computer forecast models.

These CNN weather forecast products take into account rain, wind, snow, ice and fog and the impacts they could have on travel.

Bookmark our storm tracker page for an auto-updating version of these maps and track the storm yourself.

The only good news: Computer forecast models aren’t always right. Especially a week in advance.

There is a lot of uncertainty in the forecast Sunday night and thereafter, the National Weather Service in New York said Tuesday morning, so there is low confidence in the forecast.

By Tuesday afternoon, the forecast models will have been rerun. The output Tuesday evening, Wednesday or Thursday could be different than it was earlier this morning.

Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade will return to a traditional route and public viewing in 2021

It is in the consistency and the trends from one model run to the next that meteorologists will be watching closely. This is what will build their confidence in next week’s potential storm.

“Even as the storm moves away by Wednesday, airlines could still be dealing with significant prior cancellations with planes and crew members in the wrong place,” Myers says. “This storm has really bad timing.”



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JAGS HIT THE ROAD TO FACE #11 MICHIGAN


ANN ARBOR, Mich. – The IUPUI women’s basketball team will open its regular season campaign on Tuesday night (Nov. 9) when the Jaguars travel to Ann Arbor to face #11 Michigan at 7:00 p.m. The game marks only the second time the Jags face the Wolverines, with the last matchup on Dec. 11, 2004, when IUPUI fell 68-48.
 
Head coach Austin Parkinson‘s team enters the game after a 98-50 exhibition win over IU Northwest that saw five Jaguars score in double-digits. Standout guard Rachel McLimore led the team with 17 points and three triples followed by three-time #HLWBB Player of the Year Macee Williams with 10 points and five rebounds.
 
The Jaguars finished the 2020 season with a 15-5 record and were voted atop the Horizon League Women’s Basketball Preseason Polls for 2021. Starting point guard Destiny Perkins returns for the Jags and has started off strong with 10 points and three rebounds in the exhibition match up.
 
Other returning letterwinners include graduate student Morgan Allen, juniors Natalie Anderson and Ali Berg and sophomores Trinity Duckworth, Jaci Jones and Anna Mortag. First-year center Jacquel Bronaugh and freshman forward Nakaih Hunter led the incoming class with strong outings against IU Northwest. Another newcomer, Saint Louis-transfer Rachel Kent, was among the starting five for the exhibition opener and finished with six points and three assists in limited action. 
 
Parkinson’s squad was recently pegged No. 12 in the initial Mid-Major Top 25 for the 2021-22 season.
 
The Jaguars will be tested on Tuesday as they face Michigan who enters the season ranked No. 11 in the Associated Press poll and No. 10 in the USA Today/Coaches poll. The Wolverines return 11 players including their top leading scores, Naz Hillmon, the 2021 Big Ten Player of the Year, and Leigha Brown. Michigan is coming off last year’s 16-6 season. Naz Hillmon led the team in 2020 averaging 23.9 points and 11.3 rebounds to earn the program’s first-ever All-American.

Tuesday’s game with be aired on Big Ten Network+ with tip off at 7 p.m.
 





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JAGS HIT THE ROAD TO FACE #11 MICHIGAN


ANN ARBOR, Mich. – The IUPUI women’s basketball team will open its regular season campaign on Tuesday night (Nov. 9) when the Jaguars travel to Ann Arbor to face #11 Michigan at 7:00 p.m. The game marks only the second time the Jags face the Wolverines, with the last matchup on Dec. 11, 2004, when IUPUI fell 68-48.
 
Head coach Austin Parkinson‘s team enters the game after a 98-50 exhibition win over IU Northwest that saw five Jaguars score in double-digits. Standout guard Rachel McLimore led the team with 17 points and three triples followed by three-time #HLWBB Player of the Year Macee Williams with 10 points and five rebounds.
 
The Jaguars finished the 2020 season with a 15-5 record and were voted atop the Horizon League Women’s Basketball Preseason Polls for 2021. Starting point guard Destiny Perkins returns for the Jags and has started off strong with 10 points and three rebounds in the exhibition match up.
 
Other returning letterwinners include graduate student Morgan Allen, juniors Natalie Anderson and Ali Berg and sophomores Trinity Duckworth, Jaci Jones and Anna Mortag. First-year center Jacquel Bronaugh and freshman forward Nakaih Hunter led the incoming class with strong outings against IU Northwest. Another newcomer, Saint Louis-transfer Rachel Kent, was among the starting five for the exhibition opener and finished with six points and three assists in limited action. 
 
Parkinson’s squad was recently pegged No. 12 in the initial Mid-Major Top 25 for the 2021-22 season.
 
The Jaguars will be tested on Tuesday as they face Michigan who enters the season ranked No. 11 in the Associated Press poll and No. 10 in the USA Today/Coaches poll. The Wolverines return 11 players including their top leading scores, Naz Hillmon, the 2021 Big Ten Player of the Year, and Leigha Brown. Michigan is coming off last year’s 16-6 season. Naz Hillmon led the team in 2020 averaging 23.9 points and 11.3 rebounds to earn the program’s first-ever All-American.

Tuesday’s game with be aired on Big Ten Network+ with tip off at 7 p.m.
 





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U.S. travel rules to hit some countries hard


MIAMI — New Biden administration travel restrictions aimed at preventing the unvaccinated from coming to the United States will be felt particularly hard in Latin America and the Caribbean, a region where wide disparities and lack of access to covid-19 vaccines have left most of the population without protection against the virus.

The new rules, which White House covid-19 coordinator Jeff Zients said will begin in early November, could also prohibit some vaccinated travelers from entering the country if they have received shots from vaccine makers that are not recognized by the World Health Organization.

The White House said last month that it was considering banning travelers who received covid-19 vaccines that have not gotten emergency authorization from the WHO. The U.S. has authorized only three vaccines — Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson — but the WHO’s emergency use list includes vaccines produced by AstraZeneca and China’s Sinopharm. But it currently does not include Russia’s Sputnik V or Cuba’s Soberana, which some countries in the region have used to augment their vaccine supplies.

A spokesperson for the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the agency “is actively working with vaccine experts regarding which vaccinations will be accepted.”

The CDC will provide more information about the requirements in the coming weeks, she said.

Whatever decision U.S. authorities make would leave many Latin Americans and Caribbean nationals shut out of the United States at a time when visa approvals have already been backlogged over covid-19 and restrictive embassy staffing.

“It disproportionately affects the developing countries like Guyana,” said Oneidge Walrond, the South American nation’s minister of tourism and commerce, who fears that Sputnik will not make the U.S. approved list.

Believing vaccination was the only way out of the pandemic, Guyana this year turned to the Russian-made vaccine, purchasing 200,000 doses at $20 each after being unable to secure any of the U.S.-made vaccines. Even though it has joined a number of Caribbean countries in passing similar covid entry requirements for international visitors — one must show proof of vaccination and negative testing within 7 days of travel — the country believes it will now be punished by the U.S.’s new requirement after being unable to get other vaccines.

“We think it’s unfair and highlights and deepens the divide between the haves and have-nots,” Walrond said.

On Wednesday, the Pan American Health Organization’s director, Dr. Carissa Etienne, said only 37% of the 653 million people in Latin America and the Caribbean have been vaccinated, while countries like Nicaragua have yet to reach 10%. Haiti, which has administered only about 75,220 U.S-donated Moderna shots, has less than 1% of its population vaccinated.

CALLS FOR HELP

With many people lacking access to vaccines, the U.S. this summer began shipping 40 million doses to the region, mostly through the WHO global access platform known as Covax. But tensions over the availability of shots in one of the world’s hardest-hit regions have already flared even among partners like Colombia, which has already received 6 million doses donated by the U.S.

In his speech at the recent United Nations General Assembly, Colombian President Ivan Duque spoke of the “unprecedented” gaps in vaccination coverage, adding a veiled criticism of the U.S. booster-shot plan.

“While some nations acquire additional doses for six or seven times [the size of their] population and announce third booster doses, others have not applied a single dose that gives them hope,” he said.

Millions of people in the region have gotten vaccines produced by Russia, China, India and Cuba that have not received WHO emergency authorization. The rules will also spotlight regional inequities, as the poorest countries struggle to vaccinate their citizens amid low supply and vaccine hesitancy, and international efforts like Covax remain slow in delivering promised doses.

“We continue to urge countries with surplus doses to share these with countries in our region, where they can have a life-saving impact,” Etienne said. She said the Pan American Health Organization, which is the World Health Organization’s Americas regional office, was trying to accelerate vaccinations in the Americas, including purchasing vaccines and ramping up manufacturing in the region.

Though Covax was set up to help poor and middle-income countries secure vaccine doses at lower prices, the Pan American Health Organization’s assistant director, Dr. Jarbas Barbosa, said it will not meet the goal to provide enough vaccines to immunize 20% of the population of participating nations.

Cubans are in a particularly tough spot because the government declined to participate in Covax and developed its own vaccines instead. The government also has not taken the U.S. up on an offer to accept vaccine donations, two senior Biden administration officials said last week.

After a year and a half of government-imposed restrictions on foreign travel, many Cubans are looking forward to visiting family and friends abroad when airports open up in mid-November. They are likely to face a new hurdle to come to the U.S., however, as the vast majority of Cubans are receiving locally produced shots of Soberana and Abdala.

A minority of the population is getting the Chinese-manufactured Sinopharm vaccine that has WHO emergency approval. Cuban authorities said the island was leading the vaccination efforts in the region, with 80% of its 11.3 million population having received at least one dose. However, only 56% is fully immunized because Cuba’s vaccination program requires three doses with several weeks between the shots.

The U.S. rule can put additional hurdles on Cuba’s plans to export its vaccines. So far, the country has shipped vaccines to Venezuela and Nicaragua and signed a contract to sell 10 million doses to Vietnam.

The Finlay Institute, the Cuban state manufacturer of the Soberana vaccine, is already in contact with WHO to seek the agency’s approval. Dr. Vicente Verez Bencomo, the institute’s director, said the government was investing in bringing the production plant standards up to meet the requirements for export.

“We are supporting Cuba to participate in the prequalification process,” Barbosa said. “We already had a meeting with WHO and vaccine producers. Our interest is that all vaccines can participate in the WHO’s prequalification process, because that will expand the supply of vaccines that we can buy.”

In Cuba, the Dominican Republic and other countries in the region, people have had little choice of which vaccine to get.

In countries like Argentina, there has been a patchwork of options, but not all vaccines have been available simultaneously or in all areas. More than 10 million Argentinians vaccinated with Russian Sputnik V will not be able to come to the U.S. if manufacturers do not solve issues with the production plants that have halted the WHO’s approval process.

AIR-TRAVEL MANDATE WEIGHED

Amid a growing push for passengers on domestic flights to show proof of vaccination, top infectious-disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci said he doesn’t see it happening in the near future.

His statement came Sunday during an appearance on CNN’s State of the Union, after anchor Dana Bash asked if he would like an air travel vaccine mandate in effect for the holidays. He said such a decision would be made with “input from a number of parts of the government.”

“On the table is the issue of mandates for vaccine,” said Fauci, Biden’s chief medical adviser. “It’s always discussable, we always wind up discussing it, but right now I don’t see that immediately.”

Late last month, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., introduced a bill that would make vaccination, a negative test or proof of recent recovery from the virus mandatory to fly domestically. Earlier in the month, Rep. Don Beyer, D-Va., proposed legislation to require proof of vaccination or a negative test for domestic air and Amtrak travelers.

Fauci said last month that he would support a vaccine mandate for domestic flights if President Joe Biden wanted to move forward with one.

During Sunday’s interview, he declined to weigh in on whether he supported a mandate, saying he did not want his comments to be taken out of context.

“We have everything on the table, and it will be discussed by the medical group,” he said.

Thailand, meanwhile, plans to no longer require international visitors from at least 10 low-risk nations to quarantine beginning next month if they are fully vaccinated, the prime minister said Monday.

In a televised speech, Prayuth Chan-ocha said the first group would include arrivals from the United Kingdom, Singapore, Germany, China and the United States. The list will be expanded Dec. 1 and again Jan. 1, he said.

Thailand’s economy has been badly hurt by the losses suffered by its tourism industry after most foreign visitors were barred in April last year. That policy has eased, but all arrivals still faced onerous quarantine requirements.

Even now, Bangkok and other areas have a 10 p.m.-to-4 a.m. curfew and other restrictions to tame a third wave of the coronavirus that began in April.

“The time has come for us to ready ourselves to face the coronavirus and live with it as with other endemic infections and diseases, much as we have learnt to live with other diseases with treatments and vaccinations,” Prayuth said.

He said he has instructed the government’s Center for COVID-19 Situation Administration and the Public Health Ministry to urgently consider the plan by the end of the week. The center will also finalize which countries will be on the no-quarantine list.

All visitors will still need to show negative covid test results before embarking for Thailand and will require another test on arrival, after which they will be free to travel around the country.

Visitors from other countries will still have to quarantine and meet other requirements.

Prayuth said the authorities will also consider allowing the consumption of alcoholic beverages in restaurants as well as the operation of entertainment venues starting Dec. 1 to support the revitalization of the tourism and leisure sectors during New Year’s celebrations.

“We will have to track the situation very carefully, and see how to contain and live with that situation, because I do not think that the many millions who depend on the income generated by the travel, leisure and entertainment sector can possibly afford the devastating blow of a second lost New Year holiday period,” he said.

Information for this article was contributed by Nora Gamez Torres and Jacqueline Charles of the Miami Herald; by Hannah Sampson of The Washington Post; and by Chalida Ekvitthayavechnukul of The Associated Press.



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U.S.’s travel restrictions will hit Latin America and the Caribbean hard


New Biden administration travel restrictions aimed at preventing the unvaccinated from coming to the United States will be felt particularly hard in Latin America and the Caribbean, a region where wide disparities and lack of access to COVID-19 vaccines have left most of the population without protection against the deadly virus.

The new rules, which White House COVID-19 coordinator Jeff Zients said will begin in early November, could also prohibit some vaccinated travelers from entering the country if they have received shots from vaccine makers that are not recognized by the World Health Organization.

The White House said last month that it was considering banning travelers who received COVID-19 vaccines that have not received emergency authorization from the WHO. The U.S. has only authorized three vaccines — Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson — but the WHO’s emergency use list is much wider and includes vaccines produced by AstraZeneca and China’s Sinopharm. But it currently does not include Russia’s Sputnik V nor Cuba’s Soberana, which some countries in the region have used to augment their vaccine supplies.

A spokesperson with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the agency “is actively working with vaccine experts regarding which vaccinations will be accepted [and] age that the requirements will start to apply.”

The CDC will provide more information about the requirements in the coming weeks, she said.

European and Brazilian travelers, who have been shut out of the U.S. for more than a year, will likely welcome the measure, but others are dreading it due to its potential effect on regional travel in the Americas.

Whatever decision U.S. authorities make would leave many Latin Americans and Caribbean nationals shut out of the United States at a time when visa approvals have already been backlogged over COVID-19 and restrictive embassy staffing, and could likely create more diplomatic friction in a region already feeling ignored by its closest, most powerful neighbor.

“It disproportionately affects the developing countries like Guyana,” said Oneidge Walrond, the South American nation’s minister of Tourism and Commerce, who fears that Sputnik will not make the U.S. approved list.

Believing vaccination was the only way out of the pandemic, Guyana earlier this year turned to the Russian-made vaccine, purchasing 200,000 doses at $20 each, after being unable to secure any of the U.S.-made vaccines. Even though it has joined a number of Caribbean countries in passing similar COVID entry requirements for international visitors — one must show proof of vaccination and a negative COVID-19 PCR test taken within 7 days of travel — the country believes they will now be punished by the U.S.’s new requirement after being unable to get other vaccines.

“We think it’s unfair and highlights and deepens the divide between the haves and have-nots,” Walrond said.

On Wednesday, the Pan American Health Organization’s director, Dr. Carissa F. Etienne, said only 37 percent of the 653 million people in Latin America and the Caribbean have been vaccinated, while countries like Nicaragua have yet to reach 10 percent. Haiti, which has only administered about 75,220 doses of U.S-donated Moderna vaccines, has less than 1 percent of its population vaccinated.

With many people lacking access to vaccines, the U.S. this summer began shipping 40 million doses to the region, mostly through the WHO vaccine global access platform known as COVAX. But tensions over the availability of shots in one of the world’s hardest-hit regions have already flared even among partners like Colombia, which has already received six million doses donated by the U.S. In his speech at the recent United Nations General Assembly, Colombian President Iván Duque spoke of the “unprecedented” gaps in vaccination coverage, adding a veiled criticism of the U.S. boosters plan.

“While some nations acquire additional doses for six or seven times [the size of their] population and announce third booster doses, others have not applied a single dose that gives them hope,” he said.

Millions of people in the region have gotten vaccines produced by Russia, China, India and Cuba that have not received WHO emergency authorization. The rules will also spotlight regional inequities, as the poorest countries struggle to vaccinate their citizens amid low supply and vaccine hesitancy, and international efforts like COVAX remain slow in delivering promised doses.

“We continue to urge countries with surplus doses to share these with countries in our region, where they can have a life-saving impact,” Etienne said. She said PAHO, which is the World Health Organization’s Americas regional office, was trying to accelerate vaccinations in the Americas, including purchasing vaccines and ramping up vaccine manufacturing in the region.

Though COVAX was set up to help poor and middle-income countries secure vaccine doses at lower prices, PAHO’s assistant director, Dr. Jarbas Barbosa, said it will not meet the goal to provide enough vaccines to immunize 20 percent of the population of participating nations.

Cubans are in a particularly tough spot because the government declined to participate in COVAX and developed its own vaccines instead. The government also has not taken the U.S. up on an offer to accept vaccine donations, two senior Biden administration officials said last week.

After a year and a half of government-imposed restrictions on foreign travel, many Cubans are looking forward to visiting family and friends abroad when airports open up mid-November. Still, they will likely face a new hurdle to come to the U.S., as the vast majority of Cubans are receiving locally produced shots of Soberana and Abdala.

A minority of the population is getting the Chinese-manufactured Sinopharm vaccine that has WHO emergency approval. Cuban authorities said the island was leading the vaccination efforts in the region, with 80 percent of its 11.3 million population having received at least one dose. However, only 56 percent is fully immunized because Cuba’s vaccination program requires three doses with a space of several weeks among shots.

The U.S. rule can put additional hurdles on Cuba’s plans to export its vaccines. So far, the country has shipped vaccines to Venezuela and Nicaragua and signed a contract to sell 10 million doses to Vietnam.

The Finlay Institute, the Cuban state manufacturer of the Soberana vaccines, is already in contact with WHO to seek the agency’s approval. Dr. Vicente Verez Bencomo, the Institute’s director, said the government was investing in bringing the production plant standards to meet the requirements for export.

“We are supporting Cuba to participate in the prequalification process,” Barbosa said. “We already had a meeting with WHO and vaccine producers. Our interest is that all vaccines can participate in the WHO’s prequalification process because that will expand the supply of vaccines that we can buy.”

In Cuba, the Dominican Republic and other countries in the region, people have had little choice on which vaccine to get.

Jamaica Health Minister Christopher Tufton said while his country’s low vaccination rate could be explained by vaccine hesitancy and an initial lack of supply, Jamaicans now want Pfizer, 208,260 doses of which were shipped in August by the U.S. He said more than 10% of the population is fully vaccinated, while at least 20% has had at least once dose.

“The U.S. measure would certainly have an impact given our close connection with that country for business and pleasure,” he said. “For some, it would be a vaccine mandate imposed externally, so it’s likely to impact vaccine” acceptance.

In countries like Argentina, there has been a patchwork of vaccine options, but not all have been available simultaneously or in all areas. More than 10 million Argentinians vaccinated with Russian Sputnik V will not be able to come to the U.S. if manufacturers do not solve issues with the production plants that have halted the WHO’s approval process.

Russian Health Minister Mikhail Murashko said last week that manufacturers have answered all the questions needed to get the authorization, but the WHO later said a decision on the Sputnik V vaccine was not imminent. Russian media outlet Sputnik also reported that the country’s authorities intend to discuss with their U.S. counterparts a mutual recognition of vaccine certificates in an upcoming meeting in Geneva.

“In principle we have always said that those who have been vaccinated should not face any restrictions in terms of travel, including testing or even quarantine,” said Markus Ruediger, a spokesman for the International Air Transport Association.

“However, we believe that options for those who cannot be vaccinated — for medical reasons or due to lack of vaccine — should not be excluded and that alternatives, such as testing, should be made available.”

Related stories from Miami Herald

Nora Gámez Torres is the Cuba/U.S.-Latin American policy reporter for el Nuevo Herald and the Miami Herald. She studied journalism and media and communications in Havana and London. She holds a Ph.D. in sociology from City, University of London. Her work has won awards by the Florida Society of News Editors and the Society for Professional Journalists.//Nora Gámez Torres estudió periodismo y comunicación en La Habana y Londres. Tiene un doctorado en sociología y desde el 2014 cubre temas cubanos para el Nuevo Herald y el Miami Herald. También reporta sobre la política de Estados Unidos hacia América Latina. Su trabajo ha sido reconocido con premios de Florida Society of News Editors y Society for Profesional Journalists.





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Hit the Road With These Travel-Planning Apps and Tricks


When it comes to loading up step-by-step directions, any places that are in one of your saved lists will appear first when you’re searching for somewhere to navigate to: Just type the first few letters then select the location. Google Maps lets you queue up directions for up to 10 places in succession for the same journey.

Use Apple Maps to Create Whole Guides

Creating and naming guides in Apple Maps.

Apple Maps via David Nield

Like Google Maps, Apple Maps can save specific places and add them to a curated list that you can return to whenever you like. Bring up a location in the app on iOS or macOS, then tap or click on Guides—it’s the button that looks like a plus symbol inside a box. You can add the place to an existing guide, or create a new one.

If you decide to create a new guide, you need to give it a name. You can also add a custom picture—otherwise the list will be given the main image on Apple Maps for the first location you add. Once somewhere is added to a guide, the plus symbol changes to a tick symbol.

It’s up to you how you use these guides: You can create one master list for an entire trip, or build up multiple lists to cover your next vacation (covering restaurants, hotels, entertainment, or whatever). When you’re looking at somewhere that’s been added to a guide on Apple Maps, the list will be accessible from its info card.

To get back to your guides, tap your user icon to the right of the search bar (on iOS) or pick a guide from the navigation pane on the left (on macOS). You have the option to add new places, share the list with someone in your contacts, change the order of the list, change the guide photo, and more. Unfortunately, Apple Maps doesn’t yet have the option to plot a route to every location in a guide in turn.

On iOS, you can browse through curated guides that experts have put together. Open up the search pane from the bottom of the interface, then choose Explore Guides to see what’s available—you can narrow down your search by location or by publisher, and view guides that have been uploaded recently.

Other Apps to Help You Get Around

Wanderlog lets you plan trips in detail.

Photograph: Wanderlog

If you need something a little more advanced in terms of trip planning than what Google Maps and Apple Maps offer, a variety of third-party alternatives are available. One of the most highly rated is TripIt, which not only keeps a list of all the spots you want to visit but also organizes your accommodation bookings and travel arrangements (plane, bus, train, and more).



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U.S. Covid cases hit lowest level since June 2020


People crowd outdoor dining at a restaurant as coronavirus disease (COVID-19) restrictions are eased in Ann Arbor, Michigan, U.S., April 4, 2021.

Emily Elconin | Reuters

Covid cases in the U.S. have dropped to their lowest level since June as the nation prepares for Memorial Day weekend, the unofficial start of the summer travel season.

The seven-day average of new infections is about 26,000 as of Sunday, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. That is the lowest number since June of last year.

The decline of cases is a hopeful sign, especially as many Americans plan to travel, spend days at the beach and gather with friends and family over the summer. It is the latest in a series of milestones that signal a reopening economy and a gradual return to a more typical way of life.

Cases of Covid have fallen as more people across the country get vaccinated. About 49% of the U.S. population has received at least one shot of a vaccine, and 39% of the population is fully vaccinated as of Saturday, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Of those age 18 and older, 61% are at least partially vaccinated, according to the CDC.

Retailers, including Target, Walmart and Macy’s said this week that consumers’ purchases reflect that people are becoming more mobile and social again. They said a growing number of customers have returned to stores to browse or bought merchandise they previously skipped over, from new outfits to from teeth whitener.

The CDC’s new public health recommendations also ushered in change earlier this month for Americans who had been wearing masks for months. The federal agency said people who are fully vaccinated do not need to cover their face in most indoor and outdoor settings. That prompted many retailers and some states, including New York, to drop mask requirements for those vaccinated and align with the new policy.



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