Covid-19 Daily Bulletin

16 July 2020

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

Key Announcements     

  • ONS figures have shown that the number of workers on UK payrolls has fallen 649,000 between March and June, report the BBC . According to the figures, total weekly hours worked in the UK had fallen by a record 175.3 million, or 16.7 per cent to 877.1 million hours. In April alone, unemployment rose by 34,000 to reach a total of 1.3m. Resolution Foundation chief economist Mike Brewer  told the BBC  that unemployment is forecast hit 4m (according to the OBR) for the first time ever.  The full figures are expected at 9.30am this morning.
  • Banks are now urging the Government to operate a “student loan style” scheme, administered by HMRC, that would support companies through this period. It is feared that 800,000 firms employing 3m could go bust in the next year if they can’t defer repayments on government-backed loans. The BBC has the story .
  • The government’s Chief Scientific Adviser Patrick Vallance will give evidence to MPs on the science and technology committee this afternoon. Matt Hancock, Health Secretary will be the committee’s second witness.
  • Research by Imperial College has shown that, on average, there were 13 positive cases every 10,000 people , which means the R number was lower than thought when lockdown was eased in May (0.57). The research doesn’t include hospitals or care homes
  • The Times is reporting  that the Oxford Vaccine project has “stimulated the desired response from the immune system” in the first phase of the trial. This included “encouraging levels of neutralising antibodies.”

Regional /Devolved    

  • Matt Hancock is due to make a decision on the lockdown in Leicester today. Politico is  reporting  that while infection levels are coming down, they remain “a lot higher than anywhere else.”
  • Scotland’s Children’s Commissioner, Bruce Adamson, told BBC Radio Scotland  that he was hugely worried about the lasting impact of the coronavirus pandemic on young people. He noted that children have been “disproportionately affected” by lockdown measures, particularly those in poverty.
  • Scotland’s unemployment rate rose to 3  per cent   between March and May, which is higher than the average of the UK, which is now at 3.9  per cent  increase.
  • Wales have fared slightly better, with an unemployment rate of 2.7  per cent  in comparison.
  • The story  is the same for Northern Ireland, as 2,500 proposed redundancies in June reached the highest figure on record, ever.


  • Globally, there have been 13.5m cases since the outbreak began, with 583,000 deaths
  • Infection rates are still rising quickly in cities such as Tokyo (new daily record of 280), Melbourne (317 in a day) and across the United States.
  • International Olympic Committee Member Dick Pound has said thatif the postponed Tokyo Olympics do not go-ahead next year due to the virus then the 2022 Beijing Winter Games is also unlikely to go ahead. The IOC’s  official line  remains they are committed to the go ahead under “multiple scenarios”.

Stakeholder reaction   

  • The Rail Supply  Group Taskforce have published their  Covid-19 response, which you can  view here .