Thursday 4 June 2020

COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News update June 4th 2020.

COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News update June 4th 2020.

The UK added 1,805 cases today and now has reported a total of 281,661 positive cases of COVID-19. We completed 220,057 tests yesterday. We have now completed or sent out over 5 million tests. 
7,312 people are in hospital, down 15% from this time last week. (The peak was 20,699 on 12th April.)

In the 24 hours up until 5pm yesterday, we lost another 176 people who have tested positive to COVID-19. We now very sadly have a total of 39,904 losses of life in all settings.

England 153,807 / 35,605
Northern Ireland 4,773 / 534
Scotland 15,553 / 2,386
Wales 14,238 / 1,379

Rep. Of Ireland 25,142 (+31) cases and 1,664 (+5) losses of life.
There have now been a total of 6,638,912 reported cases worldwide. The number of people who have lost their lives worldwide to COVID-19 is 389,816. Already 3,204,546 people have recovered.

FACTS beat fear WHO

"We stand on the verge of a new transport revolution. This time not limited to one particular means of travel, but rather to all forms of transport. A green transport revolution which will help us rebuild a stronger, more prosperous Britain, as well as a cleaner and healthier one too." Grant Shapps, UK Transport Minister. 

Today's UK briefing was led by Grant Shapps, Transport Minister and Sir Peter Hendy, Chair of Network Rail.
Grant said as long as conditions are okay, we are reopening further on Monday 15th June, with more children returning to high school and reopening of inessential shops. This will increase demand on transport, you MUST work from home if you can, and avoid public transport whenever possible. If you have to use public transport, please try and avoid peak hours. 

As of Monday 15th June face coverings are mandatory on all public transport in England. It is a condition of travel, you cannot travel without it. 
These shouldn't be surgical masks, they can be simple face coverings, including those made from cloth or a scarf. There are exemptions for very young children, disabled people and those with breathing difficulties. You can be refused travel if you don't comply, and fined if you are awkward about it. Wearing a face covering helps protect others if you are asymptomatic or haven't realised you have COVID-19. Staff will also wear face coverings. Social distancing must still be adhered to whenever possible - face coverings do not make you bombproof! 

Peter Hendy is like a proper bloke. A real person, not a bazillionaire politician. He doesn't forsee any issues with people having to wear face coverings. It will be enforced if necessary, to protect everyone. 
Grant can't tell us when we will be able to go on holiday in the UK because obviously it depends on how the virus progresses. He says when they say "Stay Alert" they mean to be alert that you don't go closer than 2m to other households (and don't overcrowd a beach or anything idiotic.)

Press asked Grant if it wouldn't be better to make decisions locally, rather than nationally? (Yes, yes it would.) Grant said it's important to have a national message so that people aren't confused. (How actually stupid does he think we are?) 
He was also asked if they have a plan for tourist areas, which will attract lots of people from lots of areas. He blathered. The answer was clearly no. 

Face coverings public transport

70% of care homes in Ipswich and Mid Suffolk have so far suffered COVID-19 outbreaks. It would be good to think that figure won't rise. Care homes worldwide have suffered terribly. 

Later this month the £50 bike repair voucher scheme will launch. Remember the Bike To Work scheme is already live, and now includes e-bikes, for longer journeys. We've seen a 100% increase in cycling on weekdays, and are keen to keep this going. This has forced improvements that would have taken years or decades beforehand. It's greener and healthier. 

Iran have never really managed to get control of their COVID-19 situation and, after reporting 3,134 new cases yesterday, their President Hassan Rouhani reluctantly said:
“If in any part of the country these warnings aren’t taken seriously and God forbid the outbreak of illness peaks again, the authorities will have to reimpose restrictions.” 
Restrictions were reimposed in a couple of the Southern provinces yesterday. 

Nicola Sturgeon has said she is considering making face coverings mandatory, and expressed support for a series of measures going forward that are designed to balance health, economy and society. They were proposed by Devi Sridhar, Professor & Chair of Global Public Health at Edinburgh Uni Medical School:
1. Robust Test/Trace/Isolate policy with quick test results (within hours), extensive tracing (60-80% of contacts) & 14 day isolation (& incentives to comply incl. medical support)
2. Regular monitoring at local-level w/key indicators related to virus spread & health service capacity & sharing of this w/colour scheme. Green/yellow/orange/red. Shielded groups can make informed decisions.
3. Watch for super-spreading locations like hospitals, care homes, churches, prisons, maybe schools which can trigger large chain of infections. 
4. Policy to manage imported cases from areas w/higher incidence.
5. Mandatory face coverings when distancing not possible. 
6. Physical distancing restrictions used sparingly when situation becomes uncontrollable.
7. Ensure NHS does not become COVID health service.
8. Regular testing (PCR) of essential workers to catch asymptomatic carriers. Relying on symptoms not enough. 
9. Track those discharged from hospital & confirmed cases for development of antibodies & re-infection.

how to remove a mask WHO

Disappointing news for Donald Trump (he really isn't having a good week). Trials of Hydroxychloroquine TO PREVENT COVID-19 have found it doesn't make a noticeable difference. (It's not peer-reviewed yet).
821 participants who had recently been exposed to someone who had tested positive took part. 
"The incidence of new illness compatible with Covid-19 did not differ significantly between participants receiving hydroxychloroquine (49 of 414 [11.8%]) and those receiving placebo (58 of 407 [14.3%])."

Media have kindly pointed out that yesterday the UK reported more deaths from COVID-19 than the rest of the 27 countries in the EU combined. We have over 10% of all officially reported losses of life to COVID-19 worldwide. 
No, we really have not done very well. 

More disappointing news for Donald Trump. Very little to do with COVID-19, but it's toy news, which is really my thing. 
The amount of police brutality on video in America this week has horrified many. Rioters or people who aim to cause harm should obviously be stopped, but peaceful protestors are being charged and pepper sprayed, physically assaulted and dispersed with tear gas. Journalists peacefully covering the protests have been beaten, arrested and shot with rubber bullets live on camera. 
LEGO Group are not happy. They've announced a $4m donation for black youngsters and educating all children about racial equality. They've also asked shops not to promote any police sets or the LEGO Architecture White House set.

how to make a face covering from a bandana or t shirt

Russia has declared a State Of Emergency because of a massive oil spill in the Arctic Circle. 20,000 tonnes of diesel oil has escaped into a river, and it's reported to have contaminated a 350 sq km (135 sq mile) area. Heaven knows how you begin to try and clean it up, especially during a pandemic. 

Brazil yesterday again reported a record number of losses of life (1,349) and for the first time Mexico reported over 1,000 people lost in a single day.  Meanwhile Mexican President Lopez Obrador has set off on a national tour and Brazil is reopening some inessential services. 

Spain will reopen its land borders with France and Portugal on July 1st. 

UK Business Secretary Alok Sharma fell Ill while speaking in the commons yesterday. You've never seen someone touch their own face so much. He was obviously sweating like a pony, and heaven knows why he hadn't realised he had 'coronavirus symptoms' and gone home! He has now been tested for COVID-19 and is isolating. MP's only returned to parliament on Tuesday, and already the contact tracers will be busy if he tests positive...

China and Singapore have arranged a travel bridge whereby travellers don't need to quarantine between the two countries - they do however need a COVID-19 test, and if they become ill with COVID-19 they pay for their own treatment. 

After the press conference on the BBC was a scientist bloke who underestimated the UK's ability to use masks and face coverings correctly. He felt we'd all go stupid and take them off by grabbing the front, smearing any COVID-19 across our faces. He even suggested it could increase risk of spreading infection. The UK population are repeatedly proving we aren't as naive as the scientists assume. SAGE thought only 52% would behave during a lockdown. We're proving beyond doubt that we are capable of examining the evidence and thinking for ourselves. 

Some people, all of them with the same hopes and fears as you:  

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

USA 1,910,735 (+8,952) 109,533 (+391) 
Brazil 590,485 (+6,505) 32,688 (+141) 
Russia 441,108 (+8,831) 5,384 (+169) 
Spain 287,406 not yet reported today 27,128
UK 281,661 (+1,805) 39,904 (+176) 
Italy 234,013 (+177) 33,689 (+88) 
India 226,494 (+9,670) 6,318 (+230) 
Germany 184,492 (+67) 8,701 (+2) 
Peru 178,914 not yet reported today 4,894
Turkey 167,410 (+988) 4,630 (+21) 
Iran 164,270 (+3,574) 8,071 (+59)
France 151,677 not yet reported today 29,021
Chile 118,292 (+4,664) 1,356 (+81) 
Mexico 101,238 (+3,912) 11,729 (+1,092) 
Canada 93,700 (+615) 7,635 (+137) 
Saudi Arabia 93,157 (+1,975) 611 (+32) 
Pakistan 85,264 (+4,801) 1,770 (+82) 


Actual daily deaths England by date of death:


  1. I know some countries are opening their borders, but I am thinking it's safer to stay home this year x


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