Sunday 5 April 2020

COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News update 5th April 2020.

COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News update 5th April 2020.

The UK added 5,903 cases today and now has reported a total of 47,806 positive cases of COVID-19. We had in total tested 195,524 people as of 9am this morning.

As of 5pm yesterday, of those hospitalised in the UK, we have lost another 621 people to COVID-19. We now sadly have a total of 4,934 losses of life.

Total cases are: England 39,814, Scotland 3,706, Wales 3,197 and Northern Ireland 1,089. Already (many more than) 135 of the UK's positive testing cases have recovered.

Rep. Of Ireland have 4,604 cases and 137 losses of life, and have yet to report today.

There have now been 1,252,982 reported cases worldwide. The number of people who have lost their lives worldwide to COVID-19 is now 68,149. Already 257,139 people have recovered.

Look after your neighbours WHO

If you are a fan of royalty, or people called Elizabeth, or just have nowhere to go tonight, the Queen is addressing the nation in a pre-recorded video at 8pm on Royal Family social media, the TV and radio. The cameraman wore PPE (true story).

Today's Press Briefing was hosted by Matt Hancock, Health Secretary (still no sign of Boris or Chris Whitty, and it is 9 days now for Boris).
We currently have 16,702 people admitted to hospital with COVID-19. We currently have 2,336 spare ICU beds in England alone, over 9,000 ventilators available and received another 300 from China this morning, as well as those in current production.
People are mostly following social distancing rules, but the small minority are risking themselves and others. Please don't think it's clever to bend the rules.
Jenny Harries explained that sitting on a park bench is a place where people accumulate, and it's just not worth it. We need to stay home and limit our contact with other humans. .
At the moment it is not necessary to add further restrictions on movement, and Mr Hancock did purposefully avoid answering what these might be. They really won't want to tell us, because there will always be people ready to break them as soon as they're imposed. Better if it's a surprise.
There's to be another NHS Hospital in Belfast.
The UK have launched a tool to look at people with symptoms and learn more. If you have symptoms, Google NHS Status Checker.
An Urgent Directive has gone out to NHS Hospitals, as the sheer volume of patients needing oxygen has caused some instability, and an equipment failure yesterday. It's really no surprise, this is unprecedented, and it gives the other hospitals a heads' up before they encounter similar issues. Huge thanks to any hospital technicians and maintenance staff making it happen.
PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) for NHS workers has been upgraded in some instances (because of new information regarding procedures which can cause the virus to become an aerosol and linger in the air). UK PPE has always, and still, meets the WHO recommendations (although there are a lot of public complaints about shortages and incorrect supplies).

There was a question about whether the UK will be bailing out large companies, and the journalist specifically mentioned Virgin (and Richard Branson - who lives as a tax exile and sued the NHS in 2017). Matt Hancock said he will leave that to Rishi Sunak our Chancellor to answer at a later date.
There was also a question about the Scottish CMO (see below), which Matt Hancock said was up to the Scottish Government to address.

Scotland's Chief Medical Officer, Dr Catherine Calderwood, has apologised for setting an horrific example, by driving from Edinburgh to spend the weekend at her second home in Fife - for the second time - without good reason. She's set the worst example and although a talented CMO who is now incredibly sorry, will struggle to keep her job. She also received a visit from the police this morning, and was issued with a warning.

Stop the spread UK Govt Coronavirus advice

A 23 year old nurse, John Alagos, has died after becoming ill during a 12 hour shift looking after coronavirus patients. His mother says he collapsed upon returning home and paramedics were unable to revive him.

On the BBC this morning Matt Hancock had a warning:
“So my message is really clear. If you don’t want us to have to take the step to ban exercise of all forms outside of your own home then you’ve got to follow the rules and the vast majority people are following the rules."
“Let’s not have a minority spoiling it for everybody."
He went on to say any idea the government was ever going for 'herd immunity' is rubbish. (Hands up if you also heard Patrick Vallance say 'herd immunity' 2 weeks ago.)

Again on the BBC Matt Hancock told us the UK have a new target of 18,000 more ventilators as demand may be lower than anticipated. (We do also have the breathing equipment being made by UCL and Mercedes etc.)
This is something I commented on yesterday. It looked like we might have been using the Nightingale hospitals by now, so it's all good news and hopefully means we have stretched out and flattened our curve slightly. Everyone who is lost is a tragedy, but COVID-19 still isn't particularly deadly, until you can't treat everyone.

Jacob Rees-Mogg, Leader of the House of Commons, owns at least 15% of a company called SCM, which stands to make a fortune by buying up companies who can't afford to get through this storm, and then selling them on when it's all over. Vulture Capitalism. How nice for him.

United Arab Emirates (UAE) is opening it's first drive through COVID-19 testing centre in Abu Dhabi.

UAE is imposing new restrictions on the public in Dubai for a minimum 2 weeks. Only 1 person per house is allowed to leave for essentials, and masks and gloves must be worn. Busses are free and taxis half price.

Brazil appear they may be on a similar trajectory as the UK and have passed a War Budget to release funds and help protect the domestic economy. Health officials have issued a warning about a lack of hospital beds, masks, testing devices and trained staff.
Brazil can currently only carry out 6,700 COVID-19 tests a day.

It's Palm Sunday and people with religion the world over are celebrating - virtually. Many churches and religious leaders have broadcast their own services online, with some receiving millions of viewers.

The US medical stockpile might not have been looked after very well. Some states are complaining about masks with dry rot that expired in 2010, broken ventilators, and faulty elastic that could cause the straps to snap.

For The Love Of Scrubs have groups of sewists all over the UK creating things like hair bands, washbags and even actual scrubs for our NHS workers. Yes, we shouldn't have a problem, but we do. If you've got some scrap material you don't need, or want to join in, type For The Love Of Scrubs into the search bar up there and find a group local to you.

Lost Their Fight:
Eccentric owner of Longleat Safari Park, Lord Bath
Spain's Princess Maria Teresa

Japan have a bit of trouble. After controlling COVID-19 really well for a long time, they've had over 100 new cases each of the last 2 days. Hopefully they can pull it back.

A couple who have safely delivered twins in India, have named them Corona and Covid.

The Chinese government has donated 1,000 ventilators to New York State. The state of Oregon are also sending 140 ventilators. New York has today reported a total of 122,031 cases of COVID-19 and has lost 4,159 people.

Follow social Distancing UK Govt advice

There's a stark quote in the Washington Post today from columnist Carl Zimmer:
"By the time Donald Trump proclaimed himself a wartime president — and the coronavirus the enemy — the United States was already on course to see more of its people die than in the wars of Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq combined."

If you still know anyone who is convinced 5G and COVID-19 have links, remind them that Iran has no 5G coverage at all, and has reported 55,743 cases of COVID-19 and 3,452 patients succumbed.

In Taiwan all passengers have to wear masks when getting onto public transport. Anyone who fails to comply can be fined $3000 (£80) to $15,000 (£400).

Iran has extended the ban on intercity travel and 'high risk activities' such as schools and churches until April 18th.

Every night in Marin County (Bay Area, California), they have the 8 o’clock howl in support of the healthcare workers, and each other.

Nigeria is setting up a $1.2 billion coronavirus intervention fund.

Police are in the frontline here. They don't just stop you going to the park, they are the people who have to attend to every single death at home. They see exactly what the effect is in their community. If you want to know how serious it is, just ask a copper. Thanks to every one of them.

Dr Tedros, head of WHO has another message about domestic violence during lockdowns and stay-at-home orders:
"If you're at risk of domestic violence:
-speak to supportive family & friends
-seek support from a hotline or local services for survivors
-make a plan to protect yourself & your children any way you can
-Identify a place to go to should you need to leave the house immediately."
24 hour helplines:
England: 0808 2000 247
Northern Ireland: 0808 802 1414
Scotland: 0800 027 1234
Wales: 0808 8010 800
Phone 999 for any genuine emergency, and check in on your mates.

Indonesia has a big problem. Officially they have reported 2,273 cases and 198 losses of life,  but they have one of the lowest testing rates in the world. The number of funerals in capital Jakarta during March was 1,300 more than the same period last year.

I don't want to hex it, but Australia are doing really well controlling their outbreak and keeping it low. They really stand out, as most other Western countries are mainly following similar, much higher trajectories.

Italy and Spain reported less loss of life yesterday - both seem to be over their peaks. Fingers crossed it stays that way. For the first time Italy has less patients in Intensive Care than the day before. It's fabulous news, but Domenico Arcuri, the government's special commissioner for the coronavirus emergency has warned:
"We can't have the idea that we've already reached the moment to return to normal."

WHO Health Workers take care of yourselves

Some numbers. Each one represents a person very much like you:

Country / Cases / Losses of life:

USA  327,848 (+16,491) 9,325 (+873)
Spain 130,759 (+4,591) 12,418 (+471)
Italy 128,948 (+4,316) 15,887 (+525)
Germany 98,765 (+2,673) 1,524 (+80)
France 89,953 Not yet reported today 7,560
China 81,669 (+30) 3,329 (+3)
Iran 58,226 (+2,483) 3,603 (+151)
UK 47,806 (+5,903) 4,934 (+621)
Turkey 27,069 (+3,135) 574 (+73)
Switzerland 21,100 (+595) 685 (+19)
Belgium 19,691 (+1,260) 1,447 (+164)
Netherlands 17,851 (+1,224) 1,766 (+115)
Canada 14,426 (+514) 258 (+27)
Austria 12,051 (+270) 204 (+18)
Portugal 11,278 (+754) 295 (+29)
Brazil 10,475 (+115) 448 (+3)
S. Korea 10,237 (+81) 183 (+6)
Israel 8,018 (+167) 48 (+4)
Sweden 6,830 (+387) 401 (+28)
Australia 5,687 (+137) 35 (+5)



  1. Another amazing, easy to understand round up! Those tweets from passengers on the cruise that we read when this all started feels like years ago now! Stay safe everyone... and stay in... protect lives!x Sim

  2. You are amazing at these updates. It has been some harrowing news, but hopefully things will turn a corner soon xx


Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment. I read every one and try my best to reply!