Thursday 14 May 2020

COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News update 14th May 2020.

COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News update 14th May 2020.

The UK added 3,446 cases today and now has reported a total of 233,151 positive cases of COVID-19. We completed 126,064 tests yesterday. 11,041 people are in hospital. 

In the 24 hours up until 5pm yesterday, we lost another 428 people who have tested positive to COVID-19. We now very sadly have a total of 33,614 losses of life in all settings.

England 140,275 / 30,028
Northern Ireland 4,291 / 449
Scotland 14,117 / 1,973
Wales 11,834 / 1,164

Rep. Of Ireland 23,401 cases and 1,497 losses of life. Not yet reported today.

There have now been a total of 4,485,940 reported cases worldwide. The number of people who have lost their lives worldwide to COVID-19 has met another unwelcome milestone, at 300,674. Already 1,687,565 people have recovered.

Book your test now UK workers

Grant Shapps, Transport Secretary, took today's UK briefing, with Prof Jonathan Van-Tam, Deputy Chief Medical Officer. 
The transport system will have to change. You should walk or cycle whenever you can. If you can't, and you have access to a car, please use it. Public Transport is going to be a mess while social distancing occurs. 
He explained that while we've been at home, they've done absolutely tons of work on the transport infrastructure. They've done loads of big jobs, including 419 upgrades to Network Rail over Easter. The A14 upgrade has been completed 7 weeks early. £96m of improvements occurred on Northern train lines over April. 
They're working on filling potholes for cyclists and the upcoming scooter trials (available to any local authority who wants them). He announced a £2b package for upgrading roads. 
We want to retain some of the air quality improvements we've noticed and are already benefiting from. We want to move on. We've already learned a lot is possible. We need to continue to think outside the box and use the skills we've gained over the last few weeks to make improvements. 
Sounds like there may in future be incentives for electric car use. Don't forget if you want to get a bike to go to work, your employer can help - Google Cycle To Work Scheme. 

No age group is more or less likely to catch COVID-19. Children catch it as much as adults of any age. See below.
The Office for National Statistics are really earning their money. They've published the first provisional results from the COVID-19 Infection Survey. As well as backing up the data that children catch COVID-19 as much as anyone else, they said:
"We estimate that 0.27% of people not in care homes, hospitals or other institutional settings in England would test positive for COVID-19 from 27 April to 10 May 2020 (on any given day). 
This equates to an estimated 148,000 people in England."
Given that we have already lost around 40k people and only 1/4 of 1% of people seem have COVID-19 at any one time, herd immunity would be unfathomably costly and take over 7 years to achieve at current suppressed / socially distanced levels. Best open the schools, eh. (Oops, sorry. I didn't say that aloud.)
"Of those working in patient-facing healthcare or resident-facing social care roles, 1.33% tested positive for COVID-19." 5 times as many as the population as a whole. 
Randomly selected samples from 10,705 participants were studied. 
ONS catching COVID age groups

A 14 year old boy has died in London from the rare inflammatory disease which seems to be associated with COVID-19. More than 40 children have now been treated for the condition at the Evelina London Children’s Hospital. 7 of the first 8 required a ventilator. Cases are also reported at Great Ormond Street Children's Hospital. The NHS have said over 100 children have been treated for the condition across the UK, and it may occur some time after having coronavirus. 
The inflammatory condition occurs in children and involves symptoms like Kawasaki Disease or Toxic Shock - children may have severe tummy pain, high temperature, a red rash, red eyes and swelling, including swollen hands and feet. 

If your child or anyone else is ill in any way and needs help, get medical attention. Don't be scared of catching coronavirus - coronavirus can cause strokes, heart attacks, blood clots, pneumonia, conjunctivitis, sudden collapse and other things. Your symptoms might even be coronavirus. Ring 111 for help. Ring 999 in an emergency. 

Garden Centres and Recycling Centres reopen in Northern Ireland on Monday.

More evidence is mounting in support of Vitamin D. The populations most likely to be vitamin D deficient are suffering the worst losses of life and number of infections from COVID-19. Several studies have now shown possibility of a link, including a recent Irish study of 33 patients, which found those with a vitamin D deficiency were over 3 times more likely to end up on a ventilator. 
Public Health England have changed their recommendations: "Consider taking 10 micrograms of vitamin D a day to keep your bones and muscles healthy."
Don't stockpile and don't overdo it. Use of any high dose supplements IS NOT recommended without medical supervision, because it is possible to overdose - however you cannot overdose through sunshine, because your body only makes what it needs. 20 minutes in the sun in a t-shirt each day from March to September will give most people in the UK their daily dose. 

Drive-in cinemas are making a comeback in Dubai. They're proving popular in a lot of countries, taking place among other places on unused sports grounds, car parks and airport runways. 

The World Health Organisation report that: "There has been a 42% increase in the number of confirmed cases of COVID19 in the African Region in the past week."

There are lots of schools genuinely posting their fears about re-opening, there are also lots of hoaxes. If it's from a proper school FB page, it's more likely to be true. I've been sent copy pasted letters which are identical and claim to be from different schools around the UK, alongside images from France, Denmark, Taiwan and goodness knows where. 
NO CHILDREN WILL BE PLACED IN BOXES. I can hardly believe I actually said that, but then, we've had weirder hoaxes from world leaders.... 

mythbusters-spraying alcohol COVID doesn't help

In Scotland care home residents returning from hospitals now need to have 2 negative tests before they can go home. 

The British Medical Association (BMA) on Sunday released a statement about the English government's decision to reduce lockdown restrictions and plans to reopen:
“The Westminster Government’s plan to ease certain aspects of lockdown in England is too fast, too confusing and too risky."
They believe we risk a second wave of infection, there is mixed messaging and lack of clarity:
“Meanwhile the level of testing to monitor spread remains far below the capacity needed and there is still no agreement even about the best app for testing and tracing.
“So the message has to be clear. It is imperative that we do not risk people mixing with each other without the ability to rigidly adhere to social distancing.
“Without this assurance, lives are still at risk and the NHS is still at risk."

2 coronavirus cases have been found in Bangladesh's Rohingya refugee camps. There are over 1m people crammed into awful conditions after fleeing from sectarian violence in Myanmar. They locked down in early March, but they have no internet access, so misinformation is rife.

There is a group organising 'mass protests against the lockdown' around the country. A quick look around their website shows they're actually protesting 'enforced vaccination', and they are registered as belonging to Britain First deputy Jayda Fransen.
They're protesting something that hasn't ever been suggested, about a vaccine which doesn't even exist yet. 
They also have some pretty strange ideas about which members of society should or shouldn't be allowed to live peacefully and in harmony. 
They managed to get 20 protesters and 60 journalists at their London event. Fingers crossed the journalists don't bother to turn up this time.

There's a hoax that wearing a face mask might give you carbon dioxide poisoning, or lower your immune system. Errrrm....nope. 

Public Health England has approved Roche's antibody test. There are now 2 accurate antibody tests (serological / did I have it?) and the big UK labs reckon they'll be ready to roll out large scale at the end of May. 
The UK are also using them in some of the random population survey testing to try and assess how many of the population have already been infected. 

Yesterday Boris Johnson speaking in parliament about air travel said:
"Inadvertently, the planet this year will (have) greatly reduced its CO2 emissions ... we need to entrench those gains.” 
“I don’t want to see us going back to an era of the same type of emissions as we’ve had in the past. Aviation like every other sector must keep its carbon lower.”
There are a lot of lessons in this pandemic. If we choose to learn. 

Dogs in 15 households infected with COVID-19 were tested and 2 were found to be infected: 
"The evidence suggests that these are instances of human-to-animal transmission of SARS-CoV-2. It is unclear whether infected dogs can transmit the virus to other animals or back to humans."

The English rules on social distancing and only meeting with 1 other person are, on the face of it, random and bizarre, but it does make some sort of sense. Inevitably, even with good intentions, COVID-19 will be passed on accidentally in some cases. 
If person A is out and sees person B, they may pass on COVID-19. It takes an average 5 days to develop symptoms, but you are infectious probably for 3 days before they show. 
So by the time person B is feeling ill, their household might already be infected, and actually infectious. Say 2 of them (people C and D) might have gone out and seen a friend each (people E and F) and chanced a hug, or sat too close, the wind blew the wrong way etc. By the time person B has symptoms, 6 people could be infected. 
If we were allowed to mix with 4 people each, we have already run out of alphabet, and because that would occur all over the country, we could in 2 weeks time have a massive explosion of cases, which appears to come from nowhere. That's exactly what we want to avoid. Theoretically, if you stay far enough apart that you won't catch COVID-19, it'll never happen. But is everyone going to stay 6ft/2m apart, and in many cases, is it even possible?

ONS how many people have COVID UK

The state of emergency in 39 of Japan's 47 prefectures is being lifted. Citizens are asked to return to normal life in stages and continue to work from home, wear masks and follow social distancing measures when they can. 
Japan have reported 16,049 cases and have lost 678 souls. They still have 243 people seriously ill in hospital. Best of luck to them all.

New Zealand moved to Level 2 restrictions today. They locked down fast and hard, and now they reap the benefits by reopening hair salons, gyms, cinemas and loads more. 
They have reported 1,497 cases of COVID-19 and have lost 21 people. They have 65 active cases including 2 people very ill in hospital. They count 'suspected cases' in their total until they are certain they are clear. Well done to you all (you're a star Jacinta Ardern!). 

Some numbers. They all represent people who are incredibly similar to you: 

Countries / Cases / Losses of life (some states yet to report): 

USA 1,438,426 (+8,078) 85,699 (+502)
Spain 272,646 (+1,551) 27,321 (+217) 
Russia 252,245 (+9,974) 2,305 (+93) 
UK 233,151 (+3,446) 33,614 (+428) 
Italy 223,096 (+992) 31,368 (+262) 
Brazil 196,158 (+7,001) 13,551 (+393) 
France 178,060 not yet reported today 27,074
Germany 174,478 (+380) 7,884 (+23) 
Turkey 144,749 (+1,635) 4,007 (+55) 
Iran 114,533 (+1,808) 6,854 (+71)
China 82,929 (+3) 4,633
India 81,990 (+3,935) 2,649 (+98) 
Peru 76,306 not yet reported today 2,169
Canada 72,520 (+242) 5,337 (+35)
Belgium 54,288 (+307) 8,903 (+60)
Saudi Arabia 46,869 (+2,039) 283 (+10) 


1 comment:

  1. That New Zealand Prime minister is brilliant, isn't she? xx


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