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Coronavirus news and updates for Friday 19th May 2022

The latest coronavirus news from Canada and around the world on Friday. This file will be updated throughout the day. Web links to longer stories when available.

9:50 a.m Children ages 5 to 11 should get a booster dose of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine, US government advisers said Thursday.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention quickly adopted the panel’s recommendation, opening up a third COVID-19 shot for healthy elementary school-age children — just like what’s already recommended for everyone as young as 12.

The hope is that an extra shot will boost protection for children aged 5 to 11 as infections rise again.

“Vaccination with a primary series in this age group has lagged behind other age groups and makes them vulnerable to serious disease,” said CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky in a statement.

7:22 a.m Ontario’s election campaign will be half-virtual, half-in-person today as New Democratic and Green Party leaders isolate with COVID-19.

NDP leader Andrea Horwath and Green Party leader Mike Schreiner both have COVID-19, and while Schreiner says he’s fine, Horwath says she doesn’t feel 100 percent.

She has said she will isolate until she no longer tests positive and Schreiner has said he will isolate for at least a few days and in the meantime they both continue to hold events and make announcements virtually via Zoom.

Horwath was scheduled to hold events in Thunder Bay but will instead be speaking about gas prices in a Zoom press conference.

Liberal leader Steven Del Duca will campaign in Ottawa, one of the few regions where the Liberals retained their seats despite their disastrous performance in 2018.

Progressive Conservative leader Doug Ford makes a stopover in Niagara.

7:20 a.m Japan will ease its Covid border restrictions from June 1, including by doubling its daily cap on the number of international arrivals to 20,000, Chief Cabinet Officer Hirokazu Matsuno said on Friday.

The number of arrivals will still be well below pre-pandemic levels. Those arriving from about 80 percent of countries and regions will no longer have to undergo virus tests or undergo quarantine upon arrival, he added.

Countries will be classified into red, yellow and green categories based on virus risk assessed, and arrivals from countries in each category will be treated differently, according to a joint statement by the State Department and other ministries. The list of countries by category will be announced later.

Japan has already announced that it will try to visit small groups of tourists on package tours starting this month.

Friday 6:19 am: Three members of the New Zealand cricket team tested positive for COVID-19 just before a warm-up match against Sussex on Friday.

Fast bowler Blair Tickner, hitter Henry Nicholls and bowling coach Shane Jurgensen began five days of isolation in their hotel rooms, the team said.

The four-day warm-up – the first of two – was to take place.

England host New Zealand for three Tests at Lord’s from June 2 before the series heads to Trent Bridge from June 10 and Headingley from June 23.

The Black Caps won the finals of the inaugural World Test Championship last June when they defeated India.

New Zealand captain Kane Williamson is currently at home awaiting the birth of his second child. New Zealand are also missing Tim Southee, Trent Boult and Daryl Mitchell, who play in the Indian Premier League.

Read Thursday’s coronavirus news.

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