Covid-19 Daily Bulletin

A series of daily updates for CHO members regarding relevant updates pertaining to Coronavirus from home and abroad.

Key Announcements   

  • Robert Jenrick, Housing Secretary, led last night’s press conference. He reported the latest figures as Latest data:  i ) 2,094,209 test have been carried out; ii) 87,63 tests carried out yesterday; iii)229,705 people have tested positive, a 3242 increase since yesterday; iv) 11,307 are currently in hospital, down 15% from last week; v) Sadly, of those tested positive, 33,186 have now died, which is an increase 494 fatalities since yesterday
  • He reiterated the five levels of the new five stage Covid alert system, which will determine the rate of R (infection rate) and therefore the levels of social distancing and lockdown measures  necessary. He added that we are now in a position to move from level four to level three
  • The Housing Secretary went on to clarify that you can now exercise as much as you like outside, and you can now meet one other person in an outside space, as long as you are two metres apart.
  • On the first of June, if all goes to plan, step 2 will come into action. Certain retailers will be allowed to open with social distancing measures in places, primary schools with hopefully open and sports will begin again behind closed doors.
  • No earlier  than the fourth of July, and again if the data says it is safe to do so, step 3 will be enacted, public places, places of worship and leisure facilities will begin to open.  Jenrick  is working closely with places of worship on this matter to ensure it can be done safely.
  • Jenrick  also  made a  range of announcements regarding  moving house  during the pandemic, construction work and the reopening of estate agents. The Department also published  guidance  for the owners and operators of urban centres and green spaces to help social distancing.
  • Sky has  reported that Sir Keir Starmer  has written to the prime minister urging him to return to the House of Commons to “recognise” that government advice that people in care homes were “very unlikely” to contract coronavirus had been advice earlier in the year.   Starmer accused Johnson of misleading MPs over official advice.
  • From 8am yesterday,  self-employed individuals or members of partnerships whose business has been adversely affected by coronavirus  were  able to apply for a  Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) grant worth 80% of their average monthly trading profits.  The government also announced that they would  temporarily guarantee business-to-business transactions currently supported by  Trade Credit Insurance , ensuring  the majority of  insurance coverage will be maintained across the market.
  • Defra  announced that garden centres were to reopen from yesterday and they  should put in place social distancing, cleaning and protective measures for both staff and customers
  • The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport  launched a £5m loneliness fund which will aim to ensure that, for people of all ages and backgrounds, staying at home does not need to lead to loneliness.  The Department also  published guidance  to help Britain’s top sportsmen and women to return to training safely .
  • The Department for Health and Social Care has  announced a  major  new human whole genome sequencing study will take place across the NHS, involving up to 20,000 people currently or previously in an intensive care unit with coronavirus, as well as 15,000 individuals who have mild or moderate symptoms.
  • Sky News  reports that experts in  waste water  from around the world are hoping that sewage could help them to track coronavirus hotspots and are researching techniques that could help gauge the level of infection in a certain community, without the need for testing.
  • A coronavirus antibody test kit has been approved by Public Health England (PHE)   in a breakthrough that could be key to easing the UK’s lockdown restrictions , the Telegraph
  • Sky News reports  that a  trial of the NHS contact tracing app on the Isle of Wight has unveiled some issues with the software, Downing Street said.
  • The Office for National Statistics is  due to publish the first results of its landmark infection survey early this afternoon ,  its first proper estimate today of the number of people who have the coronavirus


  • The World Health Organisation has  warned that coronavirus “may never go away” as its experts predicted that a global mental health crisis caused by the pandemic was looming.
  • Brazil has recorded its highest daily rise in the number of deaths  from coronavirus, the BBC  reports 
  • US security officials have  said that China is trying to steal and disrupt the work of American researchers developing vaccines for the coronavirus
  • India has  announced plans to spur small and medium businesses as part of a $266bn economic package
  • The US embassy in Tanzania has  warned that there is a risk of “exponential growth” of Covid-19 cases in the country, at a time when the government is not releasing data on new cases.
  • Lethoso , one of the few places in the world to be apparently free of coronavirus, has now  reported its first case and  the Ministry of Health said it was awaiting results for 301 cases where tests had been done and sent to neighbouring South Africa.
  • Lebanon  has begun a “total” lockdown for four days, following a rise in the number of coronavirus cases.


  • Education Unions  have  published a joint statement on the safe reopening of schools, calling on the government to step back from the 1 st  June and work with the sector to create the conditions for a safe return based on principles and tests they have set out. Signatories are AEP,  GMB,  NAHT,  NASUWT, NEU, NSEAD,  Prospect, UNISON and Unite.
  • Responding to the Telegraph report regarding the confidential  Treasury report stating that the UK’s deficit could reach  heights of £337 billion this year , Public and Commercial Services Union, Mark  Serwotka,  “Civil servants have already suffered 10 years of pay restraint and cuts and will not tolerate paying for the corona crisis which was not of their making.”
  • The National Landlords Association has  stated that landlords have welcomed the government’s decision to  open up  the housing market, which includes the lettings market.
  • The Local Government Association has  welcomed the government’s announcement to restart the housing market, however, they emphasise the need to allow councils at least five years to spend Right to Buy receipts, along with the ability  to keep 100 per cent of receipts, set discounts locally and increase the proportion of receipts that can be used to meet the cost of replacement homes

Unconfirmed reports  

  • The Metro has  reported that, according to NHS sources,  the results of tens of thousands of Covid-19 key worker testing kits have gone missing