Friday 26 June 2020

COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News update 26th June 2020.

COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News update 26th June 2020.

The UK added 1,006 cases today and now has reported a total of 309,360 positive cases of COVID-19. We completed 165,665 tests yesterday. 

4,657 people are in hospital, 276 are using a mechanical ventilator. 

In the 24 hours up until 5pm yesterday, we lost another 186 people who have tested positive to COVID-19. We now very sadly have a total of 43,414 losses of life in all settings.

Scotland 15,807 / 2,482
England 159,958 / 38,888
Northern Ireland 4,876 / 547
Wales 15,531 / 1,497 
"Due to historical revisions the cumulative total for lab-confirmed UK cases is 374 higher than that obtained by adding today's daily figure to yesterday’s total. Following a de-duplication exercise by Public Health Wales, 2 deaths have been removed from the cumulative total."
(okaaaaay.... I'm not really a big fan of all of the 'historical revisions' happening this week.... )

Rep. Of Ireland 25,405 cases and 1,727 losses of life. (Not yet reported today.) 

There have now been a total of 9,796,064 reported cases worldwide. The number of people who have lost their lives worldwide to COVID-19 is 493,870. Already 5,299,429 people have recovered.

1 metre plus rule UK 4th July 1m plus masks or visors screens etc

By this morning's data, Scotland has had no new admissions to hospital with COVID in 10 days. (Run, close the border, saw off, fly, be free!)

"COVID-19 has gone down due to the efforts of everyone but is still in general circulation.
If we do not follow social distancing guidance then cases will rise again. Naturally people will want to enjoy the sun but we need to do so in a way that is safe for all."
Chris Whitty, Chief Medical Officer, England, horrified at visions of thousands of people crammed onto Bournemouth beaches. 

The Welsh government has published initial results of a random survey looking at how people have affected by Coronavirus. They found: 
- 93% of parents with a child at primary school and 85% of parents with a child at secondary school are content that the school is finding ways to support children with their learning.
- 75% of people say they are generally happy
- 41% of people have experienced anxiety during the period.
- 85% of people feel they belong to their local area (+13% from last year)
- 4 out of 5 working people say they would get full pay if self-isolating
- 44% say they can do most or all of their work from home.

The UK Office for National Statistics (ONS) released fresh information about those who succumb to COVID and their occupations earlier this week. All the data relates to working age people (age 20 to 64) in England and Wales between 9 March and 25 May: 
- Nearly two-thirds of deaths were men (3,122 deaths). 
- Age-standardised mortality rate was statistically higher in men, at 19.1 deaths per 100,000, compared with 9.7 deaths per 100,000 women (1,639 deaths).
- Men working in elementary occupations (don't require lengthy training) had the highest rate of death involving COVID-19, with 39.7 deaths per 100,000 men (421 deaths). Of the specific elementary occupations, men working as security guards had the highest rate, with 74.0 deaths per 100,000 (104 deaths).
- Men and women working in social care, a group including care workers and home carers, both had significantly raised rates of death involving COVID-19, with rates of 50.1 deaths per 100,000 men (97 deaths) and 19.1 deaths per 100,000 women (171 deaths).
- Among health care professions as a whole, including doctors and nurses, men had significantly higher rates of death (30.4 deaths per 100,000 men or 130 deaths) when compared with the general population, but women did not. 
- Of the specific health care professions, nurses had elevated rates among both sexes, at 50.4 deaths per 100,000 men; 15.3 deaths per 100,000 women.
- Among women, four specific occupations had raised rates of death involving COVID-19, including sales and retail assistants (15.7 deaths per 100,000 women, or 64 deaths).
- Because of the higher number of deaths among men, 17 specific occupations were found to have raised rates of death involving COVID-19, some of which included: taxi drivers and chauffeurs (65.3 deaths per 100,000); bus and coach drivers (44.2 deaths per 100,000); chefs (56.8 deaths per 100,000); and sales and retail assistants (34.2 deaths per 100,000).
"Of the 17 specific occupations among men in England and Wales found to have higher rates of death involving COVID-19, data from the Annual Population Survey (APS) show that 11 of these have statistically significantly higher proportions of workers from Black and Asian ethnic backgrounds; for women, APS data show that two of the four specific occupations with elevated rates have statistically significantly higher proportions of workers from Black and Asian ethnic backgrounds."
There's a message from the statistician: 
"This analysis does not prove conclusively that the observed rates of death involving COVID-19 are necessarily caused by differences in occupational exposure; we adjusted for age, but not for other factors such as ethnic group and place of residence."

260620 ONS Mortality and occupation

Florida is closing bars after breaking their own record for new cases for the last several days. Today they have reported 8,942 new positive cases. They now have a total of 122,960 positive coronavirus cases.
Gov. Ron DeSantis said last week that he 'would not move backwards, and impose more restrictions'. Today all sales of alcohol for consumption on site were banned with immediate effect. 

There's a brilliant thread on Twitter from scientist Florian Krammer, who explains why deaths can be going down at the same time as cases are rising - as is happening in the USA right now. 
Increased testing is obviously a big factor in diagnosing more cases with mild or no symptoms, but cases are often spread among younger healthier populations first, who then take it home or to work, and to their extended family and friends, and then it moves throughout the wider community. In the case of Iran, when they had a second peak, fatalities only really started to climb around 3 1/2 weeks later. 

260620 ONS Driving occupations mortality

intu is making an announcement as soon as they can about their future, and it does NOT look good. Shopping Centres are genuine victims of coronavirus and it's very possible they will go into administration. Deadlines with creditors are at midnight tonight. 

The New York Times has today published a beautiful set of maps and graphics explaining how Coronavirus spread through the US. It isn't behind a paywall and is well worth a look. By studying genes and those teeny tiny mutations that occur when COVID goes from person to person, they show how the Bay area and Seattle could have very easily been the US COVID epicentre, but New York overtook it. By locking down a week earlier, New York City alone would likely have saved over 22,000 lives. 

Health Secretary and face of the UK Covid response, Matt Hancock, has reasserted on Talk Radio this morning that the Government DO have the authority to close beaches if it gets out of hand. Scenes like those on the South coast of England this week must be especially horrifying to locals and local health care workers. 

260620 ONS women carers mortality

The independent, unauthorised SAGE group will have weekly press briefings from now on. Today they looked at Testing, and tried to give us some of the figures we miss at the daily briefings. 
Numbers of new cases per week stand at between 16,500 and 33,000 (2,300-4,300 per day). (For the last 2 weeks the UK has been at something of a plateau rather than a slide.) New cases are still falling, but incredibly slowly, which means the R number must be close to one. 
They feel testing is not as effective as it should be. Only 1/3 of people with symptoms are coming forward, getting into the system and having their contacts traced. We need to improve this. We also have no data on who is actually self-isolating. They believe we should be given financial and other support to enable us to self-isolate. We don't know how many of those people isolating go on to develop COVID - if we knew this then we'd have evidence it helps.
When asked by press, they said they WOULD send their children back to school in September if we continue at this rate, even if there were full classrooms. They believe it will be a lot safer if test and trace works properly by then. They are also still disappointed that the UK government didn't think outside the box and try to continue out-of-school, outdoor and other forms of socialising and education for children. 

The US Justice Department filed a motion to the Supreme Court late Thursday night to invalidate the Affordable Care Act. This is the 'Obamacare' health care law that has enabled millions of Americans to get insurance coverage.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi echoes my own thoughts:
"President Trump and the Republicans' campaign to rip away the protections and benefits of the Affordable Care Act in the middle of the coronavirus crisis is an act of unfathomable cruelty." 

"Since lockdown started, Greater Manchester has found accommodation for nearly 2000 people who had nowhere else to go.
It’s been made possible by a huge network of dedicated people all pulling together to help. You know who you are.
From us all, thank you."
Andy Burnham, Manchester Mayor. 
That's a huge thank you from me too - to the teams who have worked so hard at this all over the UK, and those who fought to prevent all of the homeless people being just turfed back out onto the streets.  

Got symptoms Get tested

7 years ago Los Angeles orthopedic surgeon Arthur Kreitenberg invented a machine to disinfect an airplane cabin using ultraviolet light. He couldn't sell his idea. Understandably that has now changed. The unit can disinfect an entire cabin in around 10 minutes, at a cost of about $10 per plane. 
(No Donald, you cannot use this on people. It's not like sunshine and it's really very burny on your skin, and will turn your retinas into crisps.) 

Independent SAGE criticised the press today for highlighting several thousand people on beaches on the South coast. They said it makes it seem the norm, when it isn't. And they are right. Even if there are several thousand people there, there are millions more enjoying the sunshine much closer to their own lounge. 

Have a good weekend... Be alert, stay aware and save the NHS. Back Sunday. 

Some people. They're shown as numbers because I don't know how to spell all of their names: 

Countries / Cases / Losses of life (remember time differences, in larger countries some states /provinces yet to report):

USA 2,514,822 (+10,234) 126,932 (+152)
Brazil 1,244,419 (+11,272) 55,304 (+250) 
Russia 620,794 (+6,800) 8,781 (+176)
India 506,972 (+15,802) 15,662 (+354)
UK 309,360 (+1,380) 43,414 (+184) 
Spain 294,985 (+419) 28,338 (+8)
Peru 268,602 not yet reported today 8,761
Chile 263,360 (+4,296) 5,068 (+165) 
Italy 239,961 (+255) 34,708 (+30)
Iran 217,724 (+2,628)10,239 (+109) 
Mexico 202,951 (+6,104) 25,060 (+736)
Pakistan 195,745 (+2,775) 3,962 (+59)
Turkey 194,511 (+1,396) 5,065 (+19) 
Germany 194,013 (+228) 9,012
Saudi Arabia 174,577 (+3,938) 1,474 (+46) 

New York Times Coronavirus spread maps: 
iSAGE press briefing on Testing:


  1. It might be a good idea to try that out on Trump lol. His skin already has had way to much UV rays as it is lol. I did say yesterday we should rebuild Hadrians wall, but I’m super against Scotland being independent so I’m with you guys. Sad news on the Intu front, I hope they can sort something. I did think of the wonderful shopping centre you have there. We have one in Paisley we visit now and again, and it has a great activities part too. Hope you have a good weekend x

    1. Thanks Susan! It will be tragic if any of the huge shopping centres close down, they are so spacious and tall that they have to be a safer environment than a low ceiling building. I honestly think splitting off areas and preventing travel is the way to beat this. If Scotland is free of it (or very nearly so), it should be kept apart and ticked as clear. Eventually you have a whole UK of ticks, but not if you keep mingling.


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