Thursday 28 May 2020

COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News update 28th May 2020.

COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News update 28th May 2020.

Better news today, as the UK's weekly losses of life to COVID-19 has fallen below 1,000 for the first time, and London has lost less than 100 people. 

The UK added 1,887 cases today and now has reported a total of 269,127 positive cases of COVID-19. We completed 119,587 tests yesterday. 8560 people are in hospital, down 11% from this time last week. 

In the 24 hours up until 5pm yesterday, we lost another 377 people who have tested positive to COVID-19. We now very sadly have a total of 37,837 losses of life in all settings.

England 151,422 / 33,710
Northern Ireland 4,679 / 516
Scotland 15,288 / 2,304
Wales 13,725 / 1,307

Rep. Of Ireland 24,803 cases and 1,631 losses of life. (Not yet reported today.) 
There have now been a total of 5,854,248 reported cases worldwide. The number of people who have lost their lives worldwide to COVID-19 is 359,812. Already 2,539,969 people have recovered.

Track and Trace Sq 1

England and Scotland's Test And Trace has launched. The app. has some problems, so isn't yet live, but around 25,000 human contact tracers are now working, to inform people when you've been in contact with someone who has tested positive. This could be in your home, workplace, school or other location. Contact is currently defined as a distance of less than around 2m/8ft for 15 minutes or more. 

If contact tracers get in touch with you, they'll ask you to isolate for 14 days in case you develop symptoms. Your household don't need to isolate unless you develop COVID-19. Time is really important with contact tracing, so as soon as anyone develops symptoms, book a test at 'nhs dot uk slash coronavirus' or call 119. 

Wales will launch their Track and Trace system on June 1st. 

Northern Ireland already have a track and trace system in place - they are using the Google/Apple app. which works using location and time data collected constantly by the phone anyway, and is relatively anonymous, as they never need to know whose phone it is. 
The UK's app. works on bluetooth and currently has to be turned on in the background to work at all, and reports suggest it'll only spark up if triggered by someone who has the app. open. I'd imagine this is one of the things that's causing the delay to launching. 

Track and Trace Uk Government FAQ

Boris himself did the England briefing. That's about 3 times this week. I'd have fainted if the world wasn't already insane. Alongside him were Chris Whitty Chief Medical Officer for England and Sir Patrick Vallance, UK Science Chief. 
He went through the 5 tests and showed graphs that prove we are making progress - we are. 
The re-opening of outdoor markets, car showrooms and more pupils in schools on June 1st will go ahead - but remains conditional on data and scientific advice. 
Dentists can reopen from 8th June (this I think is because we now have enough PPE).
Reopening schools to further pupils will go ahead from 13th June. 
Where necessary on a localised level, restrictions WILL be reimposed. 
FROM MONDAY we can meet with up to 5 other people OUTDOORS on private land, for example in private gardens. He said Private Gardens twice and vaguely mentioned parks, so I'm not 100% on that one. 
No gatherings for more than 6 people at once. 
You must stay 2 metres apart and minimise all contact. 
Avoid seeing lots of different people in quick succession. 
People who are clinically vulnerable must continue to shield - you need to be protected, it is not because we don't care. It's because we do. 
It's just a fraction of the social freedom we used to enjoy, but it's a step towards. 
Around 8,000 - 9,000 people are still catching COVID-19 every single day in the UK.
The R is between 0.7-0.9. In some places it is currently very close to 1. We can't let it go above 1. 
Boris says he'll do everything he can to ensure people self-isolating are helped. Then he mentioned many things that will not help the vast majority of people self-isolating. I'm not sure he understands the reality of living for most workers in the UK.

Press at the UK briefing asked lots of random questions about the new rule - that you can visit friends in private outdoor spaces. I find it helps to imagine that COVID-19 virus breath was bright purple. Think about where it would go. For starters it would be all over them - they're literally breathing all the time. If you were inside sitting on their sofa, it would be everywhere. If you sit outside 2 metres or 8 feet apart, it's far less likely to get over you. If they used your loo, where would it be? If you gave them a drink, shared a barbeque? Sharing food is a great way to spread COVID-19. Be aware of what you are doing and use common sense. COVID-19 can't survive very long in sunlight, use that to your advantage, and remember to wash your hands regularly. 

South Korea have had so many new cases appear since the nightclub outbreak a couple of weeks ago, that they have said they will reintroduce tougher restrictions if new cases exceed 50 per day for 14 days. The woman who started this whole outbreak was asymptomatic at the time, and could never have known she was infectious. 

Wear face coverings when shopping if you can UK

Sadly not all war and civil unrest stops for coronavirus. Foreign Ministers from the UK, Australia and Canada, and the Secretary of State from the US, have issued a joint statement to "reiterate our deep concern regarding Beijing’s decision to impose a national security law in Hong Kong."
Since the UK's administration ended in 1997, Hong Kong has retained independence and autonomy from China, as was agreed. 
"The world’s focus on a global pandemic requires enhanced trust in governments and international cooperation. Beijing’s unprecedented move risks having the opposite effect."

The US has now lost more than 100,000 people to coronavirus. 
New York State has more cases (374,672) and has lost more people (29,553) than most countries. Civilian protests against lockdowns and loss of civil liberties continue and most states are bowing to economic or social pressure, and beginning to reduce restrictions. 

Disney World Florida is reopening parks around mid July. Temperature screening and social distancing will be in operation. 

The Independent SAGE group held a public press conference today regarding reopening UK schools to more pupils. The video is on you tube and social media. They're led by the scientist who used to be the UK's Chief Medical Officer, and informed opinions and discussions right now must always be a good thing.
ISAGE advise utilising other educators and spaces aside from school teachers and school buildings would help children have other activities and education while schools can't operate 'normally'. 
They feel discussion should be on a far more local level, with community, school staff, pupils and parents involved. 
They are concerned about the fact 1/3 of pupils are from black and minority ethnic groups, which are more vulnerable to COVID-19, and this has not been addressed by the government. 
They believe the R being between 0.7 and 1.0 means it's too early - official SAGE group modelling determined that children going back to school can raise the R by around 0.3, which would take most areas to or above 1.0, risking a second wave.
They want test, track and isolate up, tested and properly running before any schools re-open. 
They do NOT believe it's safe to reopen any UK schools on June 1st. 
Social distancing 2 metres apart Stay alert

Durham Police have released a statement saying that Dominic Cummings is guilty of a 'minor breach' of lockdown rules, and would have been asked to return home had he been stopped during his day trip to Barnard Castle. If he had complied then no further action would have been taken. 

The UN Foundation, Swiss Philanthropy and the WHO have teamed up with Gru and the Minions to put together an advert about COVID-19 for children. 

The UK Premier League football will return on 17th June with Manchester City V Arsenal. The matches will be played behind closed doors. 

Some numbers - all of them people, with family, and friends: 

Countries / Cases / Losses of Life (Some states / provinces yet to report): 

USA 1,756,161 (+10,358) 102,712 (+605)
Brazil 418,608 (+3,947) 25,935 (+238) 
Russia 379,051 (+8,371) 4,142 (+174) 
Spain 283,849 not yet reported today 27,118
UK 269,127 (+1,887) 37,837 (+377) 
Italy 231,732 (+593) 33,142 (+70)
France 182,913 not yet reported today 28,596
Germany 182,313 (+418) 8,555 (+22) 
India 165,348 (+7,262) 4,710 (+176)
Turkey 160,979 (+1,182) 4,461 (+30)
Iran 143,849 (+2,258) 7,627 (+63)
Peru 135,905 not yet reported today 3,983
Canada 88,468 (+949) 6,873 (+108) 
Chile 86,943 (+4,654) 890 (+49) 

Durham police statement about Cummings:
"Disney plans a July reopening for its Florida theme parks"


  1. I am confused as to why they aren't paying attention to SAGE advice anymore and the R number when it was so vital a few weeks back.


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