Thursday 5 November 2020

COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News update 4th /5th November 2020.

 COVID-19 Coronavirus UK and World News update 4th /5th November 2020.

The UK added 24,141 cases today and now has reported a total of 1,123,197 positive cases of COVID-19. We completed 301,131 tests yesterday. 

12,949 people were in hospital on Tuesday 3rd, with 1,191 using a ventilator yesterday, 4th November. 

In the 24 hours up until 5pm yesterday, we officially reported the loss of another 378 people who have tested positive to COVID-19 within 28 days. We now very sadly have a total of 48,120 officially reported losses of life in all settings. (Up until Friday 23rd October, 60,051 people had COVID written on their death certificate.)

Rep. Of Ireland 64,046 (+563) cases and 1,933 (+3) losses of life. 

There have now been a total of 48,746,709 reported cases worldwide. The number of people who have lost their lives worldwide to COVID-19 is 1,235,435. Already 34,861,756 people have recovered.

051120 NEW national restrictions in England lockdown 2

No surprises, Parliament agreed to the new nationwide English restrictions, which went into force at midnight last night. Full guidance does now seem to be in place on the Gov dot UK website (click on the Coronavirus banner near the top). If you have the Test & Trace app. you'll have received an alert earlier, and can access the Gov site through the app. directly. 

Bozza did a press conference today to celebrate his second lockdown. 
He started by reminding us what a brilliant job they've done with testing, keeping businesses running, making our own PPE now... (hmmmm)
He read some figures very fast, like a headmaster reading a really big list of achievements on a Friday afternoon assembly. 
12,320 patients are currently in hospital, up from 2,602 a month earlier. 1,142 people are now using a mechanical ventilator, compared to 369 a month earlier. 492 losses of life were reported yesterday. 
In England from today, we are once again asking you to STAY AT HOME. You can only leave home for work (if you cannot work from home), education, essential activities and emergencies.
"The advice I've received does suggest that 4 weeks is enough time to make an impact."
Rishi has announced an extension to the furlough scheme (see below) until March. Help for the Self-Employed has also been raised, and cash grants for closed businesses are available. 
29,000 rough sleepers have been moved off the streets, 2/3 are now in settled accommodation. (Nice one. Finally.)
The lockdown will automatically expire at midnight on 2nd December (unless we change anything in the meantime). 
He handed over to Sir Simon Stevens, who told us about NHS England preparations for Winter. 
He says the second wave is serious. We are attempting to catch up on care that was paused with the first wave, and we can only carry on doing that if we have enough capacity, and don't fill up with COVID patients. 
Simon has a chart showing at the beginning of September we had under 500 COVID inpatients, at the beginning of October 2,000, and now we have 11,000 patients. That's the equivalent of 22 hospitals full of Coronavirus patients. These are facts, not forecasts or projections. 
It takes 7-10 days from infection to hospitalisation
15-30 days from infection to discharge or death
Action is needed today because much of the next 4 weeks is written already - it will keep going up. 
We are reminded of progress medically, and that everyone should HAVE YOUR FLU JAB, because getting flu and COVID together doubles the chance you won't survive. 
We have however halved the mortality rate of COVID for some patients (those needing Oxygen), we have hopeful treatments, and the vaccines nearing the end of development. 
He asks for our help. Protect The NHS - we are asked to help protect the ability of the NHS to do their jobs. Protect the staff. We can't fix Cancer right now, we can't heal everyone, but we CAN do something about the spread of Coronavirus. 
Si answered press questions about vaccines - we have some initial vaccines now, but there are several different types, and some won't even come through until Summer. There are multiple opportunities for something to be incredibly effective. 
Boris failed to answer press questions about the 'people who have lost their jobs, and then the furlough scheme has been expanded anyway'. 
Press asked if 'we can be sure we won't have any restrictions over December or Christmas'. Si and Boris said it really is down to us, but Boris believes people will "be able to have as normal a Christmas as possible" which is a brilliant phrase to remember, and absolutely meaningless. Simon didn't seem very confident. 
Press asked about unclear data, and Boris said they're trying to make it as clear as possible.(It's not their strong point, they're too shifty. Sometimes it's all very clear, other times it looks a little relaxed, like it's been massaged. Right now, when they want us all to stay home, it's a lot clearer.)
Boris went off on one about testing, but he explained the 3 types of COVID (have I got it?) testing, which was a good thing. (I covered them yesterday.) 
Boris ended the briefing with a bittersweet return. 
"Science is improving the whole time. We are, as a country, in a far, far better position to fight this.... Stay At Home. Protect The NHS. Save Lives."
liverpool first pilot of mass testing

"To give people across the UK certainty over the winter, I can announce today that the furlough scheme will not be extended for one month – it will be extended until the end of March.
Employees will receive 80% of their usual salary for hours not worked, up to £2,500 a month."
Rishi Sunak, the UK Chancellor. 

Extremely Clinically Vulnerable people with COVID can now breathe a sigh of relief, because your guidance has been published. You are advised not to go out to work, and to remain at home as much as possible for the next month. People with stage-five chronic kidney disease, those undergoing dialysis and adults with Down's syndrome are now also advised to follow this advice. Find the full guidance on the gov dot uk website. Everyone in this category should receive a letter sometime... any day now...

The rulings over English pubs selling take away beer have already been relaxed. They can now serve you pints as long as it's pre-ordered and you don't enter the premises. Cheers. 

"We are removing SWEDEN and GERMANY from the Travel Corridor list. From 4am Saturday 7th November, if you arrive into the UK from these destinations you will need to self-isolate. All arriving passengers should complete a passenger locator form on arrival."
Grant Shapps, UK Minister for Transport. 

NHS England did a live press conference yesterday,  and it was fascinating.
- The NHS is returning to Alert Level 4 (the highest level) - we were last in that position in July. 
- Hospitals even in the lesser affected South West have already repurposed 1/4 of their routine surgery beds for COVID patients. Lower figures are still not actually low. They're just lower compared to the disaster elsewhere.
- Pharmacists, mobile teams and the Nightingale Hospitals have been asked to be ready for first deliveries of the COVID vaccine before Christmas - but that doesn't mean it will happen. Don't get overly-excited about this.
1. Initial stocks will be very limited. 
2. Extremely vulnerable people and medical staff are first on the list. 
3. After you have the vaccine, the same as when you actually catch COVID, it takes around 2 weeks before you develop antibodies, so the time frame for everyone sitting at the table for Christmas Dinner is even tighter than you might think. It's not a likely scenario. 
4. Kate Bingham, head of the vaccine taskforce, believes 'there is a 50% or greater chance of a working vaccine being distributed to all known vulnerable people in the UK by Easter or early Summer'. 

Look after your mental health. There is ALWAYS someone to talk to

Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen has announced a cull of all farmed mink in Denmark. They haven't been able to control spread of COVID on farms, and after passing through thousands of mink, and back to human keepers.and probably back again, etc, 12 people have now been found to have a strain of COVID which may be less likely to be prevented by current antibodies and vaccines in development. 
Heartbreaking as it is, it could turn out to be a very prudent move, for humans at least. 
Every virus is liable to mutate incredibly slowly as it goes, and the more people or other animals it passes through, the more the little mutations add up. Remember we need a slightly different flu vaccine each year, and COVID is likely to be the same. 

Scientists are really unhappy that the mink mutation story is being reported in a hysterical fashion, unnecessarily scaring the public. Professor Francois Balloux, Director of the University College London Genetics Institute puts us straight:
"There are thousands of mutations in SARSCoV2 arising constantly. The fact that a few have been observed in minks will not change the strains in circulation in humans. If they were beneficial for the virus to infect its human host, they would be at high frequency already."
The first time I reported on mink with COVID was on 26th April in The Netherlands. 

Trump of the Yesterday: 
"We were getting ready to win this election, and frankly we have won this election. The goal now is to ensure the integrity for the good of this nation and this is a very big moment. This is a major fraud on the nation. We want the law to be used in a proper manner. We are going to be going to the US Supreme Court. We want all voting to stop. We don't want them to find any ballots at four in the morning and add those to the list. It's a very sad moment to me, a very sad moment and we are going...  We will win this, and as far as I'm concerned we already have."
Oh Donald. That was a bit unhinged, very premature, and it caused quite a stir because some people believed you, despite the fact it was barely even midnight on Tuesday, and we still don't know now. It also led to hundreds of your most intellectually challenged supporters heading off to the vote counts to attempt to stop them, mainly by chanting "Stop the count". 
The situation became even more confused when someone pointed out that in states where Donald was losing, stopping the count wouldn't help. "Count All Votes" became the new war cry, including in places where Trump was winning. 
History will judge our intelligence levels very badly... (Brawndo, it's what plants crave). 

Morrisons supermarkets have spotted and filled a gap in the UK food market. Schools were struggling to provide free meals to eligible pupils who are self-isolating. Morrisons have put together nutritionally balanced boxes of food, and will deliver them to the child's home, and the cost is covered by school lunch funds. The box costs £12.50 for one child and provides breakfast, lunch and snacks for seven days. 

Trump of the 27th October:
Remember how Donald tweeted:
Yesterday, November 4th, for the first time, the USA reported over 100,000 cases in a single day. They also reported the loss of 1,116 people and have 52,000 people currently in hospital with COVID. Sadly that prediction was never going to be true, however much he said it, and whoever was in the presidential lead.

A big German study 'SAFE KiDS' has examined staff and children in daycare centres. They picked a sample of 30 each from 50 different centres, and the majority of children were aged 4 or 5. Importantly these were in a low prevalence area - the maximum local transmission rate during the time of the study was 66 per 100,000 population.  
They tested both respiratory (mouth) and gastrointestinal (poop) samples weekly for a month. 
They found 2 staff members who tested positive, and not once did they get a positive sample from a child. 
The conclusion is that daycare centres, and young children, do not seem to be silent spreaders - in low prevalence areas at the very least. That should be pretty reassuring news to anyone involved. 

Italy enters new national and local restrictions from tomorrow until December 3rd.
There will be a nationwide 10pm curfew, with bars and restaurants closing at 6 except for take away/home delivery. 
The country is split into regions - Red, Orange and Yellow. Extra restrictions apply in red and orange zones, including closing of leisure facilities, and travel between zones is prohibited except for work, study or health. 
In red zones all inessential shops and services are closed, but hairdressers and barbers stay open. (Italians making their priorities clear there...) 

Greece will enter a second lockdown on Saturday. Inessential shops will close and inter-area travel is banned. People may only leave their homes for work, shopping for essentials, visiting a doctor or exercising. 11+ education will be remote. 

Donald Trumps Twitter Feed during vote counting Screenshot 2020-11-05

Trump of the Day:
Naturally Donald has been tweeting like crazy for the last 24 hours, literally. He's had so many tweets hidden or deleted for misinformation, or for announcing the winner of an event that hasn't ended, his Twitter feed was almost entirely blanked out at one point. He resumed tweeting "STOP THE VOTE" around 4 hours ago, and just posted this: 
"All of the recent Biden claimed States will be legally challenged by us for Voter Fraud and State Election Fraud. Plenty of proof - just check out the Media. WE WILL WIN! America First!"
Dictator much? 

While covering the US election results live, the BBC newsreader said "Let me just read out a Tweet that Margaret Thatcher has put out". That surprised a few people, as she died in 2013, and hasn't been heard from since. They did of course mean Theresa May, who sometimes has the appearance of someone who died in 2013 (but then don't we all)....

The UK Army will be staying at Pontins Holiday Camp in Southport while they mass test willing Liverpudlians. They arrived earlier today, and will begin testing tomorrow. Apparently this is also called Operation Moonshot, which doesn't bode well, as the last couple of Operation Moonshot ideas haven't happened yet. Either naming things isn't his strong point (do all his kids have different names?) or he already had balloons and t-shirts printed... 

Your mental health is as important your physical health. We've genuinely come a long way, and ever since January scientists have warned we could have a big COVID wave over Winter. They are also predicting a smaller wave in January/February time, which is probably why Rishi has given in and extended furlough until March. We don't have a choice, we have to go through this, but we can mainly do it sitting on our backsides in our own home. We can do this. You are NEVER on your own if you don't want to be. There is always someone to talk to. 

Remember. Guy Fawkes was possibly the only person to ever enter Parliament with honest intentions... never return to a lit firework (I have a scar in my eyebrow to prove that), eat peas, stay safe. 

Some people. They would all get joy from watching children during tonight's fireworks, especially from the safety of their own garden or window: 

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

USA 9,840,587 (+39,232) 240,225 (+396)
India 8,392,835 (+29,423) 124,685 (+331)
Brazil 5,590,941 not yet reported today 161,170
Russia 1,712,858 (+19,404) 29,509 (+292)
France 1,543,321 not yet reported today 38,674
Spain 1,365,895 (+21,908) 38,486 (+368)
Argentina 1,205,928 not yet reported today 32,520
Colombia 1,108,084 not yet reported today 32,013
UK 1,123,197  (+24,141) 48,120 (+378)
Mexico 943,630 (+5,225) 93,228 (+635)
Peru 911,787 not yet reported today 34,671
Italy 824,879 (+34,505) 40,192 (+428)
South Africa 730,548 not yet reported today 19,585
Iran 654,936 (+8,772) 36,985 (+406)
Germany 605,385 (+8,026) 11,068 (+40) 



  1. Honestly, Trump is going to be like the biggest ever tantrum ever. I'm pretty sure Supernanny won't even be able to help x

    1. It's not pretty is it? People in the future honestly won't believe it really happened.


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