COVID-19 cases surpass 60,000 in Albania

TIRANA, Jan. 5 (Xinhua) -- The total number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Albania surpassed 60,000 on Tuesday as the health authorities reported 660 new infections in a day.

On Tuesday, the Health Ministry said that 3,424 COVID-19 tests were carried out the past 24 hours, taking the total number of confirmed cases to 60,283 since the beginning of the pandemic.

Eleven patients diagnosed with COVID-19 lost their lives in the past 24 hours, taking the number of fatalities to 1,210.

Also in the past 24 hours, 555 people recovered from the virus, bringing the total number of recoveries in Albania to 35,551.

The Albanian government has confirmed the conclusion of a deal with Pfizer on the delivery of 500,000 doses of its vaccine.

On Monday, Prime Minister Edi Rama said that the vaccination campaign in Albania should begin by the third week of January.

As the world is struggling to contain the pandemic, vaccination is underway in some countries with the already-authorized coronavirus vaccines.

Meanwhile, 232 candidate vaccines are still being developed worldwide -- 60 of them in clinical trials -- in countries including Germany, China, Russia, Britain and the United States, according to information released by the World Health Organization on Dec. 29.

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