The number of new daily cases has declined in recent weeks, but the virus is far from disappearing in the US — despite President Donald Trump’s repeated assertion that it will — and the national average hides huge regional disparities.
African-American communities nationwide have seen disproportionately high levels of death and illness related to the COVID-19 pandemic, while polls have also indicated they are among the most reluctant to get vaccinated.
The new restrictions are on the advice of the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention and are imposed "in light of extraordinarily high COVID-19 case loads and multiple variants circulating in India," the official said.
Some 56 per cent of American adults — more than 145 million people — have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, but the pace of vaccination has been slowing lately.
The contrasting situation in Europe was highlighted on Monday when the EU Commission proposed that travellers who are fully vaccinated with EU-approved jabs be able once again to enter the bloc, if they come from countries keeping COVID-19 at bay.
Hopes that India's rampaging second wave of COVID-19 is peaking were set back on Thursday as record daily infections and deaths were reported and as the virus spread from cities to villages that were poorly equipped to cope.
The US will reopen its land and air borders on Nov. 8 to foreign visitors fully vaccinated against Covid-19 -- ending a more than 18-month ban on travel from much of the globe that separated families, hobbled tourism and strained diplomatic ties.
UK bans flights from South Africa region, EU plans similar; Variant has a protein dramatically different to original; Epidemiologist wards travel cubs may be too late; Parts of Europe already battling record daily COVID cases.