Tuesday, 28 July 2020

COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News update 27th / 28th July 2020.

COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News update 27th / 28th July 2020.

The UK added 581 cases today and now has reported a total of 300,692 positive cases of COVID-19. We completed 99,090 tests yesterday. 

1,286 people were in hospital on Sunday 26th, and for the first time since March, we have less than 100 people using a ventilator. 97 were reported yesterday, 27th July.  

In the 24 hours up until 5pm yesterday, we lost another 119 people who have tested positive to COVID-19. We now very sadly have a total of 45,878 losses of life in all settings.

England 259,022 / 41,282
Northern Ireland 5,912 / 556
Scotland 18,554 / 2,491
Wales 17,170 / 1,549

Rep. Of Ireland 25,892 cases and 1,764 losses of life. (Not yet reported today.) 

There have now been a total of 16,765,653 reported cases worldwide. The number of people who have lost their lives worldwide to COVID-19 is 660,140. Much more positively, 10,318,323 people have been reported as officially recovered.

1 metre plus rule UK brought in on 4th July

Oldham is the latest English area to have extra restrictions imposed, in order to avoid a local lockdown. They had over 100 new cases last week, so for the next 2 weeks:
- No social visitors to your home
- Maintain 2m social distancing with everyone not in your household when you are outside
- Shielded people should stay at home for 2 weeks from this Friday. 
- Care Homes will not accept visitors
The 3 areas which have most cases in the UK as of today are: 
1. Blackburn with Darwen
2. Leicester
3. Oldham
The area which is currently losing most people is still East Kent. 

The UK Government is planning ways to get us to lose weight.
 - Banning adverts for high fat, salt or sugar products on TV and online before 9pm.
 - Calorie labelling in restaurants, cafes and takeaways
 - Ending promotion of high fat, sugar or salt products in store and online, e.g."buy one get one free" deals on unhealthy food. 

Don't forget that from 3rd to 31st August, you get a 50% discount (up to a tenner) Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday when you eat in at restaurants, cafes, pubs etc. that are registered with the Eat Out to Help Out Scheme in England. There's a handy online checker to see which places near you have signed up (by the looks of it, ALL of them). Google 'Eat Out To Help Out'.

If you have symptoms, you must get a test

A pet cat in Surrey is the first non-human animal in the UK to test positive for COVID. We are well aware that it can cross species, that appears to be how we got it in the first place! Already we have seen COVID in dogs, cats, Bengal Tigers, Lions, Macaque and other Monkeys, Ferrets, Mink, Grivets (no, I hadn't heard of them either - type of monkey), Marmosets, Hamsters and of course, Bats! 
The World Health Organisation still know of no confirmed case where a pet has shared with their owner, but several where owners gave COVID to their pets. Don't share food with animals, or do that kissing your dog thing. No idea whether it'll prevent you from giving them COVID, but don't do it anyway. 

The UK Foreign Office have advised against travel to the Canary Islands and Balearic Islands.(Majorca, Ibiza, Tenerife, Gran Canaria, Lanzarote etc etc), in addition to mainland Spain. If you are one of the staggering half a million British people over there already a) You'll have to quarantine for 14 days when you get home, and b) What the hell? 500,000? That's 1 out of every 136 of the entire UK population has gone to Spain? What was the rush? 

The Foreign Office do now have a specific list of "Countries and territories exempt from advice against ‘all but essential’ international travel" (They can't say 'safe countries' because no country can be declared definitely safe.) Across the whole of the African continent, it includes only the remote, tiny islands of St Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha, and Reunion.

Vietnam has been held up as a fabulous example of 'how to do a pandemic', but their almost perfect record has sadly hit a snag. 3 residents of Da Nang tested positive over the weekend and they've reacted with speed and strength. 80,000 (mostly Vietnamese) tourists in Da Nang are being evacuated. Vietnam has had no domestic cases of COVID since April, so this is a huge blow. As yet there is no known source of the outbreak.

face masks and coverings CDC

 Donald Trump hasn't given up on Hydroxychloroquine. He's shared several studies showing it is effective today, so I had a look. I counted 48 positive studies and 21 negative, plus 7 inconclusive. Less than half have been peer-reviewed. It was evident quite quickly that some of the really big studies were negative, and that a lot of studies were stopped early or deemed 'unsafe' due to dangerous side effects. It seems plausible that when taken early, Hydroxychloroquine may reduce the number of patients who become seriously ill, but you're taking a drug which causes a significant number of people to become very ill on it's own. 
The World Health Organisation and the UK have both stopped their trials of Hydroxychloroquine already. 

The first batch of 50,000 of England's £50 Fix Your Bike Scheme Vouchers are going up for grabs online tonight at 11.45pm (they must have picked the time out of a hat it's so random). It is first come/first served, 1 voucher per person, max 2 per household, and they can be spent at registered repairers - if you know anyone who is a cycle mechanic or bike repair shop etc. in England, get them to register now! Google fixyourbikevoucherscheme 
Vouchers are being released in batches because bike repair shops are already really busy, and we still have some stock delays due to the whole worldwide pandemic thing. 

After reporting over 100 new cases a day for 5 days, Hong Kong has also decided to take stronger measures. Face masks are now mandatory in public places, eat-in service is temporarily halted, and social gatherings are restricted to 2 people from the same family.

Famous People With COVID: 
US National Security Adviser Robert O'Brien 

The USA's Moderna Vaccine candidate has started vaccinating 30,000 people in phase 3 of it's trials. This is the biggest single individual study, and the USA intend to repeat it monthly using different candidate vaccines. They require US testing before a drug is authorised, so next month their own trials for the UK's Oxford vaccine commence, followed by the Johnson and Johnson vaccine (Janssen Belgium/US) in September, and US based Novovax in October. 
Sadly the USA looks like it'll have enough COVID in the population to properly assess how effective the vaccines all are. 

Gruffalo The witch Julia Donaldson Covid socially distanced broomstick

Israel started well and then it all went downhill over the last 6 weeks. Experts and health officials there are in large part blaming rapid reopening of schools too soon. Udi Kliner, the health ministry’s deputy director of public-health services, says that during June:
185 caught it at events such as weddings
128 in hospitals
113 in workplaces
108 in restaurants, bars, or nightclubs
116 in synagogues
657 (47% of the total) were infected by the coronavirus in schools.

Rishi Sunak is considering an 'online sales tax' to help out the ailing high street, according to The Times. 

The UK Government is planning social care reforms, as they were even before this crisis occurred. The number of people who have succumbed to COVID in care homes is horrific, and looking for why has highlighted some of the main problems. It's being reported by The Guardian that they are considering a small extra tax on the over 40's specifically for care once you are elderly. No confirmation of anything as yet. 

TrumpVirus has been trending on Twitter all day, in part because most people aren't racist, and also due to a video of 'moments that make life worth living' which is being shared. It claims Donald is a fool, and it's likely a million Americans may die before the epidemic is controlled, and it didn't have to happen. They threw that back at you Donald. 

The World Health Organisation in May unveiled a digital health worker named Florence, who combats misinformation about COVID19 and tobacco, and gives recommendations and tips for quitting. She's now been officially launched in a multitude of languages. Over 1 billion people regularly smoke worldwide, and in some countries old wives tales and snake oil salesmen are suggesting that smoking fags, hookah or other products can protect you against the worst effects of COVID. Being a smoker is far more dangerous to your health than catching COVID. The End. 

That man who used to be on the telly a lot, the blonde one, Boris, in a very rare example of the government setting an example we SHOULD follow, has embarked on a diet. He is carrying a few extra pounds, and no doubt it didn't serve him well when he had COVID. He's made an advert featuring himself without a tie, walking his dog in his 4 million square mile garden. Run Boris, run. 

As part of the Government's 'Better Health' campaign, to encourage the hefty 2/3 of us to lose a bit of weight and be better placed to survive COVID unscathed, there are some incentives. There's a new app and a free 12-week NHS Weight Loss Plan, and lots of the big diet and slimming groups are offering special discounts for new and/or existing members. 

Please remember that having a BMI below 18.5 is as unhealthy as being overweight, and will not benefit your health or wellbeing. If your BMI is over 25, aim to lose only 1 or 2lbs a week to keep it off long term. Change your habits and say "no" more often, use a smaller dinner plate, eat more slowly and taste every mouthful properly, swap a potato for another spoon of vegetables, all of that. But don't starve yourself. This is about saving lives, and keeping you well - mentally and physically. We all deserve cake sometimes... 

Some numbers, all people created from stars:

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

USA 4,452,864 (+19,454) 151,495 (+420) 
Brazil 2,455,905 (+12,425) 88,017 (+338)
India 1,530,364 (+47,861) 34,224 (+776) 
Russia 823,515 (+5,395) 13,504 (+150)
South Africa 452,529 not yet reported today 7,067
Mexico 395,489 (+4,973) 44,022 (+342)
Peru 389,717 not yet reported today 18,418
Chile 349,800 (+1,877) 9,240 (+53) 
Spain 327,690 (+1,828) 28,436 (+2)
UK 300,692 (+581) 45,878 (+119)
Iran 296,273 (+2,667) 16,147 (+235)
Pakistan 275,225 (+936) 5,865 (+23) 
Zambia 5,002 (+450) 142 (+2)
Albania 4,997 (+117) 148 (+4)
Croatia 4,923 (+42) 140 (+1) 
Taiwan 467 (+5) 7
Vietnam 438 (+7) 



Sources
https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/
https://coronavirus.data.gov.uk/
https://www.theguardian.com/society/2020/jul/26/uk-ministers-looking-at-plans-to-raise-taxes-for-over-40s-to-pay-for-social-care
https://twitter.com/BorisJohnson/status/1287649130655997959
https://twitter.com/i/events/1287669918289113088
https://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/news/rishi-sunak-considers-online-sales-tax-in-bid-to-save-high-street-mwncs6dwx
https://twitter.com/i/events/1287646589343866882
https://coronavirusexplained.ukri.org/en/article/cad0008/
https://www.gov.uk/government/news/covid-19-confirmed-in-pet-cat-in-the-uk
https://twitter.com/JenniferJJacobs/status/1287732810275586049
https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/spain
https://www.nbcphiladelphia.com/news/health/modernas-virus-vaccine-put-to-final-test-with-thousands-of-volunteers/2481018/
https://www.gov.uk/guidance/get-a-discount-with-the-eat-out-to-help-out-scheme
https://news.sky.com/story/coronavirus-oldham-enforces-stricter-measures-to-avoid-local-lockdown-12037927

Compilation of Hydroxychloroquine studies: https://c19study.com/



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