Sunday 23 August 2020

COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News weekend update 22/23 August 2020.

 COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News weekend update 22/23 August 2020.

The UK added 1,041 cases today and now has reported a total of 325,642 positive cases of COVID-19. Tests completed has not been updated since Thursday. 834 people were in hospital on Thursday 20th (DOWN 96 since a week earlier), with 72 using a ventilator on Friday 21st (DOWN 1 since a week earlier). 

In the 24 hours up until 5pm yesterday, we lost another 6 people who have tested positive to COVID-19 within 28 days of their positive test. We now very sadly have an official total of 41,429 losses of life in all settings.

England 281,457 / 36,786
Northern Ireland 6,647 / 559
Scotland 19,811 / 2,492
Wales 17,727 / 1,592

Rep. Of Ireland 27,969 (+61) cases and 1,777 losses of life.

There have now been a total of 23,470,124 reported cases worldwide. The number of people who have lost their lives worldwide to COVID-19 is 810,253. Already 15,991,612 people have recovered.

Look after your neighbours WHO

"No country can just ride this out until we have a COVID19 vaccine.
A vaccine will be a vital tool, and we hope that we will have one as soon as possible.
But there’s no guarantee that we will, and even if we do have a vaccine, it won’t end the pandemic on its own."
Dr Tedros, head of the WHO. 

The UK government have extended the ban on evictions by 4 more weeks, and imposed a 6 month notice period - so renters can't be evicted until March 2021. There will be a lot of people feel the pressure suddenly lift at that news, and no doubt some landlords won't be so happy.  

Some of the European countries which had really suppressed COVID-19 are seeing outbreaks and rising numbers. On Saturday Italy reported over 1,000 new daily cases for the first time since 12th May. We knew this was likely, and it shouldn't let us lose hope, but we are beginning to see just how long it may take to be rid of COVID-19. Maybe all of the technology in the world can't make a disease outbreak any shorter than it was ever going to be, but we can at least keep the number of people we lose right down. 

Professor Chris Whitty has released a statement about children and schools. He says that the government has to balance risks, but getting children back to in-person learning is clearly their key priority.
"The risk of a child coming to significant long term harm from COVID solely due to school is very low. The risk of harm to many children if they don't go to school is high."
While as a blanket statement I totally agree, I'd add the caveat that this simply isn't going to be the truth for every child, or in every location UK-wide at all times. Remember everyone who becomes ill costs their local authority money and time, so they will have every reason to close schools at very short notice whenever they see necessary.  

California's firefighting teams are missing around half of the inmates who usually join them to fight wildfires. They have either tested positive or are quarantined because of close contact. California is basically on fire at the moment.

The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation have reported over 12,000 cases of COVID among prison inmates and staff.

Indian advice for older people with cartoon drawing of elderly figure chilling at a window

The world does not stop. On Thursday the 100th case of Ebola was reported in the current outbreak in Democratic Republic of Congo. DRC fought Ebola for years and earlier in 2020 the outbreak was thought over, before another case sadly emerged. Their health service is exhausted. Ebola is a far scarier disease than Covid-19. 43 of those 100 people have already succumbed. 

Belarussians have held a second Sunday protest, asking for Lukashenko's resignation and a fair election. The crowds are absolutely massive. Some estimates are that around 200,000 people are taking part, and it really looks possible from the overhead photos. Lukashenko believes everyone should take COVID on the chin, and only the weak will succumb. 

Trump of the Yesterday:
"The deep state, or whoever, over at the FDA is making it very difficult for drug companies to get people in order to test the vaccines and therapeutics. Obviously, they are hoping to delay the answer until after November 3rd. Must focus on speed, and saving lives!"
Ermmmm.... yeah. Donald, you conspiracy theorist you. Fact is, it's all run at breakneck speed already. You aren't going to get to be 'the hero' before the election. 

South Korea are in a bit of trouble, with the highest number of cases since March, and aside from a church outbreak, they are spread out right across the country. They have imposed level 2 social distancing nationwide:
- Indoor gatherings maximum 50 people, outdoor gatherings maximum 100 people.
- Clubs, dance halls, buffets, singing rooms and internet cafes will close.
- Museums and libraries will close.
- No spectators at any sports. 

Pakistan has set up a “green stimulus” scheme, offering labourers who are out of work as a result of lockdown a chance to earn money by planting trees. 

A Police raid at a nightclub in Lima, Peru, which was breaking COVID regulations has gone horribly wrong. People were so desperate to try and escape without getting caught, that at least 13 have lost their lives in a stampede for the exit. Around 120 people were at the 2nd floor club, and the tragedy took place as they tried to escape using a staircase. Teach your children that escape from almost any situation is best achieved by brisk walking. 

every mind matters mental health

A not-yet-peer-reviewed study of a fishing boat, has found that 3 sailors who had tested positive for antibodies were among just 8 members of the 122 person crew who did not catch Covid-19, during an outbreak at sea. They were tested for both current and past infection before they left, and although no-one had a positive result for COVID, 16 days later when they returned, 104 were infected.
Proving yet again that the tests aren't reliable very early in your infection, but also showing that antibodies really do seem to offer protection.  

The WHO have asked countries to consider carefully how any future vaccine supplies will be allocated.  They believe first round supplies should be made proportionally to all nations, who should then allocate it to their population starting with healthcare workers, followed by adults aged over 65 and then those having comorbidities. 

Transmission of COVID to your baby through breast milk appears unlikely, according to a new study. 64 breast milk samples from 18 infected mothers were examined. 1 sample contained inactive genetic material, and no live virus was found in any of the samples. If you are a new Mum with COVID, the WHO advice is clear, you SHOULD try to breastfeed to pass on any COVID antibodies, or express if Mum is too poorly to feed the baby by herself. 

On Saturday India conducted over 1 million tests in a single day. Hats off to them, that is some achievement. They have tried so incredibly hard. If any country didn't deserve the number of cases they have, it really is India. 

White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany posted on Twitter: “News conference with President Donald Trump at 6 pm tomorrow (moved to 5.30pm) concerning a major therapeutic breakthrough on the China Virus. Secretary Azar and Dr. Hahn will be in attendance.”
Sounds exciting! I look forward to it, you racist tongue-twister tease you... fingers crossed it's something real, useful and inexpensive. (And preferably not light, or washing up liquid, or Snake Oil).... Whitehouse 5.30pm is 10.30pm BST - if anyone wants to catch it..... 

Some people. Each and every one unique: 

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

USA 5,853,789 (+12,361) 180,375 (+201)

Brazil 3,589,469 (+6,771) 114,469 (+192)

India 3,080,483 (+37,047) 57,263 (+417)

Russia 956,749 (+4,852) 16,383 (+73)

South Africa 607,045 not yet reported today 12,987

Peru 585,236 not yet reported today 27,453

Mexico 556,216 (+6,482) 60,254 (+644) 

Colombia 533,103 not yet reported today 16,968

Spain 407,879 not yet reported today 28,838

Chile 395,708 not yet reported today 10,792

Iran 358,905 (+2,113) 20,643 (+141)

Argentina 336,802 not yet reported today 6,947

UK 325,642 (+1,041) 41,429 (+6)

Saudi Arabia 307,479 (+1,109) 3,649 (+30)

Bangladesh 294,598 (+1,973) 3,941 (+34)

Pakistan 292,765 (+591) 6,235 (+4)

Italy 259,345 (+1,209) 35,437 (+7) 

Turkey 257,032 not yet reported today 6,102

France 238,002 not yet reported today 30,512

Germany 234,225 (+368) 9,332 (+1) 





"India conducts more than one million COVID-19 tests in 24 hours for the first time"

The UK CMOs and DCMOs have summarised the current evidence on schools and COVID-19.

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