Covid-19 Daily Bulletin
1 July 2020
A series of daily updates for CHO members regarding relevant updates pertaining to Coronavirus from home and abroad.
- The Prime Minister set out the first steps in the strategy to rebuild Britain and fuel economic recovery across the UK in Dudley yesterday, to tackle some of the country’s great challenges of the last three decades: ” To build the homes, to fix the NHS, to tackle the skills crisis, to mend the gap in opportunity and productivity and connectivity between the regions of the UK, to unite and level up. ” The Government press release can be found here.
- The Government has published details of the areas of Leicestershire that are included in the localised Covid-19 lockdown and what this means.
- The health service ombudsman has called for the government to carry out a public inquiry into its handling of the coronavirus pandemic, the BBC reports.
- About 600 workers will lose their jobs after shirt maker TM Lewin announced it will close all 66 of its UK shops .
- The Government was under pressure to rethink its air bridges plan after the EU unveiled a list of countries whose tourists could undermine the scheme, the Telegraph reports.
- The Telegraph reports that Airbus is to cut 15,000 jobs globally as the plane-maker slashes staff numbers to match the collapse in demand for new aircraft , with some 1,700 jobs in the UK to go.
- A global trial designed to test whether the anti-malaria drugs hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine can prevent infection with COVID-19 is to restart after being approved by British regulators, Reuters reports.
- BBC reports that doctors have said that the government must provide vital data more quickly to local authorities to help them deal with Covid-10 local outbreaks , whilst the Guardian reports that rising coronavirus infections in pockets of the UK raise fear s of further potential lockdowns.
- KentOnline reports that a second coronavirus peak leaves east Kent hospitals with most Covid deaths in England.
- The Scottish government has had “early conversations” about test events with fans in stadia, says national clinical director Jason Leitch , but he added that there is “pretty much no chance” of having supporters back for the start of the football season.
- North Wales Live has reported that more than 450 workers have tested positive for coronavirus at two North Wales meat factories.
- Gavin Boyd, from LGBT charity The Rainbow Project, said the Covid-19 shutdown had given a “once in a generation” opportunity to bring the infection rate of HIV down to zero , the Belfast Telegraph reports.
- The Belfast Telegraph reports that Health Minister Robin Swann has announced that general visits to hospitals and care homes will be allowed to resume under a number of conditions, and could resume from next Tuesday.
- English holidaymakers have already started enquiring about a “full refund” for their Scottish ‘staycations’ if Nicola Sturgeon forces them to enter quarantine, tourism chiefs have warned as she refused to backtrack.
- Health officials across the US have expressed growing concern about the nation’s ability and willingness to slow or end the coronavirus pandemic.
- The BBC reports that, in the Czech Republic, a party has been held to give the coronavirus a “symbolic farewell”.
- The Telegraph is reporting that the US has bought up virtually the whole global supply of Remdesivir, a drug that could shorten the recovery time of coronavirus patients, which raises concerns regarding access in other countries.
- Authorities in Australia will lock down around 300,000 people in the suburbs north of Melbourne for one month from today to contain the risk of infection after two weeks of double-digit rises in new coronavirus cases in Australia’s second most populous state , the Guardian reports.
- Officials in the south Indian state of Karnataka have apologised after footage showing officials dumping bodies of Covid-19 victims caused outrage , the BBC reports.
- US Democrat Joe Biden has said he will not hold presidential campaign rallies during the coronavirus pandemic.
- New Zealand reported a second consecutive day of no new cases of Covid-19.
- Responding to the latest Coronavirus briefing from the Welsh Government, Darren Hughes, Director of the Welsh NHS Confederation said: ” it is clear from the last few days that Coronavirus is still in our communities and our workplaces. We must ensure the Test, Trace and Protect system is working properly, and we must continue to be able to isolate local outbreaks before they break into our communities.”
- Responding to the Prime Minister’s announcement of plans to ‘build back better’ in the wake of coronavirus, Anita Charlesworth, Director of Research and REAL Centre (Research and Economic Analysis for the Long term) at the Health Foundation, said: “Money to rebuild the NHS is necessary and welcome, but the funding announced today will only go a short way to addressing years of underinvestment which has led to a maintenance backlog of over £6.5bn in NHS Trusts … Rebuilding the nation’s health requires far more than just infrastructure investment. “
- Following the publication of new research on apprenticeships, Engineering Construction Industry Training Board CEO Chris Claydon said: “Apprenticeship numbers will fall markedly this year due both to the Covid-19 crisis and the dramatic fall in oil price; however, it is crucial that we maintain a pipeline of skilled recruits into the engineering construction industry to deliver energy transition. Although it may seem a long way off, when the recovery comes, employers will need fresh talent and apprenticeships remain one of the most valued routes into our industry.”
- Commenting on fines for absence in September, NAHT general secretary, Paul Whiteman, said: “The desire to bring everyone back to school, as soon as it is safe to do so, is correct. But fines are too blunt a way of making this happen. They drive a wedge between schools and families at the best of times. That is something we can ill afford at a time when getting more pupils back in school will rely on a huge amount of cooperation and understanding between schools and families.”
- Following the publication of a poll which asked children and young people aged eight-24 how they had been feeling during lockdown, Barnados Chief Executive Javed Khan said “The COVID-19 pandemic is a traumatic event that has led to increased anxiety and stress for everyone, but especially children and young people who have had their lives turned upside down by the crisis … School closures mean many of these children have been ‘hidden’ from teachers and other trusted adults for months, who would normally play a key role in identifying needs and providing support. That’s why we are calling on the government to invest in a programme to address children’s mental health and wellbeing, both over the summer and for when schools return in the autumn.”
- The District Councils’ Network, which represents 187 district councils in England, is calling for a comprehensive package of funding in the months ahead, with urgent clarity required for the medium term. Councillor John Fuller OBE, Chairman of the DCN, said: “latest figures show that, above all, it is our district councils that need comprehensive package for lost income and the most critical frontline issues like tackling homelessness, collecting bins and sustaining leisure, fitness and health services.”
- Following the government announcement regarding a package of measures to protect the jobs of highly skilled researchers and technicians working at UK universities, Royal Academy of Engineering President, Sir Jim McDonald FREng FRSE, said: “We welcome the government’s commitment to the UK university sector, particularly in providing funds to support vital ongoing research and development projects. This will help to compensate for a reduction in income and the impact of the pandemic on R&D partnerships with companies.”
- The Telegraph is reporting that Public Health England’s (PHE) future has been thrown into doubt after the Prime Minister suggested that parts of the Government’s response to the coronavirus crisis had been “sluggish” … He did not name PHE, but Whitehall sources indicated on Tuesday night that they believed the Prime Minister was referring to the agency, after he had privately criticised its response in meetings with Conservative MPs.