Covid-19 Daily Bulletin
A series of daily updates for CHO members regarding relevant updates pertaining to Coronavirus from home and abroad.
- As of yesterday, there have been 1,383,842 tests across UK, 84,806 on Monday. 194,990 tested positive, 29,427 have died.
- Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab told the Downing Street press conference last night that when the UK considers and eventually moves on to the second phase managing the pandemic, that it the new normal will be different and that we will need to adapt.
- Raab warned that cybercriminals have been targeting individuals and businesses throughout the crisis and that the Government would provide advice on the nature of these threats, so that people can better defend against these attacks.
- Member of the Government Scientific Advisory Group (SAGE) Professor Neil Ferguson has resigned after he broke coronavirus lockdown rules. In a statement, Ferguson said that he had made an ‘error of judgement’
- The UK has highest number of covid-19 related deaths in Europe after passing Italy’s total. However, experts have expressed caution at comparing numbers of deaths between countries. This is because different countries report on covid-19 related deaths differently.
- Members of the public and MPs have raised some concerns about the privacy safeguards of the newly announced covid-19 contact tracing app . Former chair of the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee Damian Hinds wrote to Health Secretary Matt Hancock arguing that it was “vital there is a high level of support” for the app, which required “reassurances to be given about both its effectiveness and the processes for controlling the data gathered by it”.
- Speaker of the House of Commons Lindsay Hoyle told the House of Commons yesterday that it was a “matter of regret” that the Prime Minister would be making a statement about a potential lifting of the lockdown on Sunday. Hoyle emphasised that this announcement should be made to the Commons first so that MPs could scrutinise the plans.
- Virgin Atlantic has announced that it will cut 3000 jobs in the UK as well as end its operations at Gatwick Airport. “We have weathered many storms since our first flight 36 years ago but none has been as devastating as Covid-19 and the associated loss of life and livelihood for so many,” said Virgin Atlantic chief executive Shai Weiss.
- US President Donald Trump told the press during his trip to Arizona that the White House coronavirus taskforce would be winding down. Mr Trump told journalists: “Mike Pence and the task force have done a great job, but we’re now looking at a little bit of a different form, and that form is safety and opening. And we’ll have a different group probably set up for that.”
- Schools have started to reopen in Wuhan in China for the first time since the outbreak began. So far it is only senior students who have made the return to school, this is about 57,000 pupils in Wuhan.
- Politico have reported that the French cheese market is in trouble after it has been reported that 5,000 tons of Roquefort, Camembert and Brie could go to waste during the pandemic.
- Scientists in the USA have said that a more contagious and mutant strain of the coronavirus has been sweeping Europe and the USA. The research was conducted at Los Alamos National Laboratory, they detected 14 stains of the virus. The research paper was published before being peer reviewed.
- Shadow Health Secretary Jonathan Ashworth has said that “Today’s confirmation we have the highest official death rate in Europe is a tragic reminder of the severity of this horrific disease. The public will rightly ask why our death rate is so high.” He went on to add that “We should take all action necessary to suppress the virus, save lives and minimise harm. We have set out the principles for what should happen next and urge ministers to work constructively with us to take these forward.”
- Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has warned Londoners that the transport systems in London would not make a swift return to how they were before the crisis. He said there would need to be a fundamentally different approach to “o operating stations, with strict queuing systems to limit the number of people who can access the network at any one time. Certain major stations where TfL and National Rail services interchange are likely to present the biggest challenge.”
- The latest survey from the National Education Union has found that many school staff have concerns about the effectiveness of present social-distancing measures in schools. Of the 2560 people surveyed, 2000 expressed concerns. Commenting on the findings of the survey, Kevin Courtney, Joint General Secretary of the National Education Union, said “teachers, heads and support staff have been working hard since mid-March to support each one of their pupils, whether at school or remotely. Throughout this time school leaders have done their level best to ensure the safety of staff and pupils alike, but this can only go so far. It is clear from the findings of this survey that much more needs to be done to equip schools for the road ahead.
- The Sun are reporting that Chancellor Rishi Sunak will eventually wind-down the furlough scheme to only help the poorest workers. He is considering cutting the current 80 per cent subsidy to 60 per cent. The scheme could be reduced even further as the months go by, encouraging people to look for new jobs.