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"COVID-19 Lockdown Exit Analysis" 21st May 2020

News Highlights

WHO records highest single-day number of new coronavirus cases

On Wednesday, the World Health Organization reported 106,000 new cases of Covid-19, the highest single-day increase of coronavirus cases worldwide and warned of an increasing crisis in the developing world.

Australia: relaxed lockdown may hurt the homeless

Thousands of homeless people, currently housed in hotels and motels across Australia, will be back on the street once coronavirus restrictions ease. State and territory governments have paid hotels to accomodate homeless people to help them self-isolate and the agreements between hotels and the state governments end in June and July.

Europe slowly relaxes lockdown while Sweden braces for a longer challenge

While most of Europe had enforced strict lockdowns for months. Sweden went the other direction and kept schools, restaurants and bars open. Now, as most of its neighbours are relaxing restrictions, Swedes have been strongly advised by their government to continue working from home for months to come.

Let's work this out

Police have cited the owners of a New Jersey gym, who reopened their facility despite lockdown restrictions. The owners claimed that they made their decision to reopen to defend their constitutional rights and the rights of small businesses.

Lockdown Exit
Ice-cream vans return to UK streets as coronavirus lockdown eases
Zelica Carr, the CEO of the Ice Cream Alliance (ICA), said: “Some of our members were receiving death threats, because the council said they could go out and trade, and operate with social distancing, but some of the general public were, quite understandably, stressing about the fact everyone should be at home.” But she said many ice-cream traders had taken steps to ensure customers’ safety, and the ICA had sent out guidance to members – reminding them that 2 metres is roughly the length of a van, asking them to use contactless payments where possible, wear protective equipment such as gloves and use cone-holders to hand over ice-creams.
Coronavirus lockdown: Why can some of us meet six people?
England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland all have their own powers when it comes to easing the lockdown. In Northern Ireland, groups of up to six people who do not share a household can now meet outdoors, with social-distancing measures in place. But in England, the guidance is to meet only one other person outside your household outdoors. The different policies are down to a number of factors, including geography, science and politics, experts say. And as we "tiptoe out of lockdown", the lines between science and policy are likely to become ever more blurred.
People in England flock to beaches following easing of lockdown restrictions as UK enjoys hottest day of the year
People in England made the most of their new found freedom and flocked to beaches and parks as the UK looked set to enjoy the hottest day of the year so far. Parts of the UK were set to see temperatures of 28C (82.4F) on Wednesday, looking to beat the 2020 record set on Tuesday at London’s St James’s Park when the mercury hit a high of 26.2C (79.16F). Lockdown restrictions were eased in England on Sunday 10 May allowing people to sunbathe, picnic and drive to beauty spots to enjoy "unlimited exercise". Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland remain under stricter restrictions.
Nations struggle to define ‘new normal’ as lockdown restrictions ease
Schools, public transport, bars and restaurants are shaping up as the front lines as nations move out of lockdown but retain social distancing. How each of those key sectors manages social distancing and reduces expected new outbreaks will determine the shape of daily life for millions as researchers race to develop a vaccine that is still likely months, if not years, away from being available to all. What a return to normal looks like varies widely.
At The End Of The Lockdown, Italians Line Up To Get A Haircut
To help sustain hairdressers’ business and give them the opportunity to serve more clients in the same day, salons are now allowed to stay open for longer times (between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m.) for seven days a week. Employees are going to have to wear protective masks and gloves at all times, and in waiting rooms a distance of two meters between people is going to have to be ensured. Entrance will be forbidden if the person has a temperature higher than 37.5°C or if they show respiratory symptoms.
France prepares for first bank holiday rush since lockdown lifted
Traffic will also be heavier due to the easing of restrictions on trucks weighing over 7.5 tonnes which will now be able to move around on Thursday and Sunday. However, Bison Futé says it will not be as busy as it normally would have been due to the measures in place to curb the coronavirus, such as the ongoing closure of restaurants, bars, pools and most sports venues. Some small museums and historical sites have been given the green light to re-open, and are expecting an influx of people over the long weekend. In a statement published on Tuesday, the Ecology and Solidarity ministry reminded citizens that they must "respect the limit of 100 kilometres from one's home and continue to respect the hygiene measures in place", such as social distancing, and hygiene measures.
France’s cinema bosses fear drive-in screenings that avoid lockdown laws are taking away their business
French cinema owners are furious as a novelty drive-in film festival is managing to steer clear of the country’s lockdown rules while they are forced to remain closed. The travelling drive-in film festival which began in Bordeaux this weekend, and which is set to cross the country showing a mixture of arthouse films and French hits. The Federation Nationale des Cinemas Francais said that the festival and other outdoor projections were leading audiences away when “local and national authorities should be concentrating on battling to reopen cinemas”.
Global report: Covid-19 grips world despite lockdown easing in Europe
The Madrid region, the Barcelona metropolitan area and parts of of Castilla y León are still in the preliminary phase of lockdown de-escalation, and accounted for the majority of the new deaths and hospital admissions over the past 24 hours.
How to enjoy the holiday weekend within France's rules for lockdown phase 1
May is a good time for public holidays in France, with three falling in the same month. But this year the May 1st and VE Day (May 8th) holidays had limited options for fun, coming as they did when France was still under strict lockdown. Thursday, May 21st marks the Christian holiday of Ascension and as France is now in phase 1 of lifting its lockdown a long weekend trip away is possible - with limits. Trips away - Although people are now freer to travel, journeys of more than 100km can only be undertaken for essential travel and require a permission form.
South Korean high school seniors return to school
South Korean students began returning to school on Wednesday, but not without some hitches, in a possible template for other countries struggling to reopen educational facilities.
NZ eyes shorter working week for economic recovery
Ms Ardern said she wanted to encourage "nimble" and creative ideas for recovery after a strict seven-week lockdown that helped New Zealand contain Covid-19 but stalled the economy. Suggestions included moving to a four-day week and creating extra public holidays to help boost spending in the tourism and hospitality sectors that have been hit particularly hard by the lockdown. "This is an extraordinary time and we should be willing to consider extraordinary ideas," she told reporters, adding: "I haven't ruled anything in or out."
In a post-lockdown world, can special disinfectants keep workplaces and public spaces safe?
As countries lift restrictions, facilities managers must not drop their guard in the pandemic fight. Can a long-lasting disinfectant spray make their task easier?
South Korean high school seniors return to school
Hundreds of thousands of high school seniors across South Korea entered their schools after having their temperatures checked and rubbing their hands with sanitizer — familiar measures amid the coronavirus pandemic. Students and teachers are required to wear masks, and some schools have installed plastic partitions at each student's desk, according to the Education Ministry. Only high school seniors returned on Wednesday. Younger students are scheduled to return to school in phased steps by June 8.
Japanese pub aims to clean up with disinfectant spray machine
The pub in Tokyo’s normally bustling Shinjuku district has installed a machine that sprays customers with hypochlorous acid water as they enter. Customers are first greeted by a hostess on a monitor, of course, who instructs them to disinfect their hands and check their temperature with a thermometer provided.
Relaxed lockdown could hurt rough sleepers
There are concerns thousands of rough sleepers currently housed in hotels and motels will be back on the street once coronavirus restrictions ease. State and territory governments have paid hotels to accommodate homeless people to help them self-isolate. Advocates say the federal government needs to pump money into social housing construction to help people keep a roof over their head. Agreements between hotels and governments end in June and July, according to a representative body for the accommodation industry. Everybody's Home spokeswoman Kate Colvin says there are an estimated 4000 rough sleepers currently staying in hotels and motels across Australia.
Social distancing rules explained: Australia's current state by state coronavirus guidelines
Several states have already started relaxing physical distancing laws, while others are holding firm, but when will they end? Find out what’s illegal and what happens if you break the law
Job losses stabilise and stock market bounces back as Australia comes out of lockdown
The worst may be over for coronavirus job losses with fewer people losing work even before COVID-19 lockdowns were eased. In the seven weeks to May 2, total payroll employment fell by 7.3 per cent, the Australian Bureau of Statistics revealed on Wednesday. While the decline was steep, it was less severe than the 7.5 per cent drop in the five weeks between March 14 and April 18. The ABS's head of labour statistics Bjorn Jarvis said the rate of decline in the labour market was moderating, even though 1.3million Australians are either officially unemployed or have given up trying to find a job.
New Zealand PM Jacinda Arden Suggests Shorter Working Week Post-lockdown
From moving to a four-day week to creating public holidays, Arden came up with various suggestions to boost the economy of the country. While speaking to international media reporters, Arden said that this is an ‘extraordinary time’ and the citizens should be willing to consider extraordinary ideas. Although, she further also added that she hasn’t ruled out any in or out as of yet.
Coronavirus: Air New Zealand prepares to reopen koru lounges but buffets will be off the menu
Air New Zealand is preparing to reopen its domestic koru lounges but new hospitality rules designed to prevent the spread of Covid-19 will make it a different experience for travellers. The airline will begin reopening domestic and regional lounges from Monday but its international lounges in New Zealand and overseas will stay closed until further notice. Chief revenue officer Cam Wallace said Auckland and Wellington would be the first domestic lounges to open
Coronavirus: Kids heading back to school hungry after lockdown
When Morrinsville School returned after level 4 lockdown they encouraged vulnerable families to send their children back just to make sure they were being fed. Between 50 and 80 students at the school, of around 200, access breakfast and lunch programmes, deputy principal Tania Anderson said. So when the lockdown was announced staff were concerned as they knew some families struggled to pick up those extra meals during school holidays. Anderson said they quickly packed up all the food they had left from KidsCan and delivered it to those in the community who needed it.
How do you think New Zealand should change after Covid-19?
Jacinda Ardern has suggested employers consider flexible working options as the nation emerges from the pandemic lockdown. Are there any other things you think should change?
Exit Strategies
What is level 3 of the UK lockdown? The next step of the coronavirus alert system explained, and what it means for lockdown rules
Moving down the 5-level alert system will bring with it a range of loosened lockdown restrictions
When is the next Scotland lockdown review? Date Scottish Government could change restrictions - and if shops will reopen
Lockdown measures across the UK are gradually starting to ease, with the Prime Minister outlining a three-phase plan to lift restrictions in England on 10 May
The measures restaurants need to survive the UK lockdown and reopen, according to the industry
Two months into lockdown and the hospitality sector is still none the wiser on quite how it will emerge when the Government finally allows businesses to open. The industry was told this month that some restaurants, cafes and pubs will be allowed to open on 4 July, though much remains unclear as to how owners will do so safely, adhering to social distancing guidelines.
When is the next UK lockdown review? Date the government will review the coronavirus rules - and what to expect
Lockdown measures are now slowly starting to ease across the UK, with the Prime Minister announcing the first few changes to guidance in a national address on 10 May. Boris Johnson unveiled the government’s three-phase plan to bring the country out of lockdown, outlining a “road map for reopening society”. The changes announced in England included allowing unlimited amounts of exercise, sunbathing in local parks, outdoors picnics, driving to other destinations for day trips, and permitting one person from different households to meet in a public place, providing a two metre distance is maintained.
Parents in Germany receive 20 weeks' pay for loss of work while looking after children in lockdown
Parents in Germany will receive up to 20 weeks of wages if they have been unable to work while looking after children during the covid-19 pandemic. Under government proposals, single parents could be eligible for 20 weeks pay while cohabiting parents can apply for up to ten weeks of wages as a 'secondary salary payment', with an upper limit of €2,016 (£1,800) per month. A secondary salary payment would cover 67 per cent of cohabiting parents' post-tax salary if they have been unable to work while proving child care.
From Gelaterias to Beach Resorts, This Is How Italy Is Getting Ready to Reopen After Coronavirus Lockdown
This week, two months after that lockdown was imposed, Italian shops, restaurants and other public areas will open their doors as the country hopes to bounce back. I spoke to the people I was supposed to meet during my trip back home, to try to understand how my country is preparing for this new, unknown, second phase.
Coronavirus: Spain makes masks compulsory in public
Spain has made it compulsory for all citizens, including children over six, to wear masks in public spaces as one of Europe’s strictest lockdowns gradually unwinds. The Health Ministry order said the masks – whose efficiency in curbing the coronavirus is hotly debated globally – would be needed from Thursday for indoor public spaces and outdoors when impossible to keep a two-metre distance.
Tourists welcome in Spain ‘as soon as possible’, with lockdown ‘lifted in June’
Holidaymakers will be welcomed back to Spain “as soon as possible”, but only when safe to do so, the country’s foreign minister has said. Spain, like the UK, was among the European countries worst affected by the coronavirus outbreak, and introduced lockdown measures on March 14, more than a week ahead of the UK. It has now begun lifting those restrictions in various regions, with plans to end lockdown next month.
As Europe slowly exits lockdown, Sweden hunkers down for long haul
"This fight against COVID-19 is a marathon," Prime Minister Stefan Lofven said recently, adding that his officials "strongly believe" their measures are viable for the long haul. While people in other European countries have gradually begun returning to their workplaces in recent weeks, Swedes have been strongly advised to continue working from home, and possibly not just for weeks, but for months to come.
Emerging countries lift lockdowns despite Covid-19 cases surge
Brazil, India and Indonesia are leading a group of middle and low-income economies that have begun to ease lockdowns despite rising coronavirus infection numbers, as pressure grows to reopen businesses and curb rising poverty. These countries, together with Mexico, Russia and South Africa, account for more than a quarter of the global population, supply the world with crucial exports and have taken contentious decisions to start a return to normal life.
Lockdown Should Only Be Eased With Tracing System In Place, Says Government's Scientific Adviser
Asked whether it is too early to conclude, as ministers have, that the science says it is safe to return to schools on June 1, Dame Angela McLean told the Downing Street daily briefing: “Scientists have been very clear in our advice that changes to lockdown as we modelled them need a highly effective ‘track, trace and isolate’ system to be in place. “And we’re also very clear that any change to the social distancing measures should be based upon observed levels of incidence in places that those are going to be changed, not on a fixed date.”
Test, trace, isolate is Scotland's only safe way out of lockdown
At long last a new contact tracing methodology is being piloted across three Scottish health boards. With 600 new trained workers in place, the exercise will test out software to collect data on a large scale, to build on existing contact tracing technology as part of a wider roll-out to extend testing, tracing and isolating measures along with support by the end of May. Only with this working effectively will Scotland safely and gradually be able to move out of lockdown.
WHO reports record single-day number of new coronavirus cases
The World Health Organization on Wednesday reported the highest single-day increase of coronavirus cases worldwide, warning the gradual end of lockdowns in wealthier countries may be obscuring an increasing crisis in the developing world. Over the last 24 hours, 106,000 new cases of the virus were recorded, the body said, according to Reuters. Mike Ryan, head of the WHO’s emergencies program, said the world will “soon reach the tragic milestone of 5 million cases.”
The man leading Wales' coronavirus lockdown strategy on what the future holds
People across Wales want to know when they will be able to arrange to go for a walk with their parents again, what the future holds for their lives, their families and their livelihoods. Cardiff West AM Mark Drakeford, the former social worker turned academic who is now Wales' First Minister, gave us an insight into his thinking about lockdown and what the future for all of us holds. We also asked him what he thought our lives might look like in January next year.
Partisan Exits
New Jersey gym owner who broke rules by reopening claims lockdown against constitutional rights
Police have cited the owners of one New Jersey gym after it reopened in spite of state-wide restrictions against the operation of nonessential businesses. Ian Smith and Atilis Gym co-owner Frank Trumbetti claim the decision to reopen was made in defence of their constitutional rights, whilst issuing apparent criticism of Democratic governor Phil Murphy. “We said it from the get-go that this was about sort of a gross violation of our constitutional rights and that this is for all small businesses,” Mr Smith told Fox & Friends on Tuesday morning.
England and Wales' lockdown rules explained and the huge differences between them
However, before you pack up up your car and get ready for a drive we'd urge you to hit the breaks. The lockdown restrictions are very different once you cross the border and could well land you on the wrong side of the law. Here we run through the main differences between Covid-19 restrictions in England and Wales so you don't fall foul of the rules.
Coronavirus UK: Earlier lockdown could have saved 11k lives
Triggering lockdown just one week earlier on March 16 could have saved thousands of lives and limited Britain's coronavirus death toll to 11,200 in first wave, study claims
Commons return will ‘euthanise’ MPs, Jacob Rees-Mogg is warned
Jacob Rees-Mogg has been told by a senior Conservative backbencher that an attempt to return to a “physical” parliament will in effect “euthanise” MPs who are sick, shielding and self-isolating. After the leader of the house confirmed the government planned to end the virtual parliamentary proceedings and force MPs to return to Westminster in early June, the former minister Robert Halfon said the proposals would discriminate and threaten the lives of some MPs. “Is it really morally just to say in effect to MPs, because you are not Tarzan-like and able to swing through the chamber, beating your chest shouting to your constituents: ‘Look, I am here!’ that you are effectively euthanised from the Commons?
Johnson 'reckless' in easing lockdown before Varadkar, expert says
On Monday, when Ireland started phase one of its gradual easing, new daily cases had tumbled to about 11% of the country’s late April peak. When England started its first phase five days earlier on 13 May, new daily cases had fallen but were still about 75% of its late-April to early-May peak. There was another stark difference. Ireland started lifting lockdown only after testing and contact-tracing systems were fully scaled up. England took the plunge before its systems were ready. “I’d say it was recklessly premature,” said Seán L’Estrange, a social scientist at University College Dublin, who has written about testing and studied tracing. “I honestly fear [the level of cases in the UK] will go up fast in the coming weeks.”
Chile protesters clash with police over lockdown
Local television showed police using tear gas and water cannon to quell unrest on the streets of El Bosque, where poverty is high. President Sebastián Piñera, in a televised address after the protests, pledged to get food to those in need. Chile has more than 46,000 cases of Covid-19 so far, with 478 deaths. A recent surge in cases prompted the national capital to go under a strict and total lockdown this weekend. In a separate development on Monday (Tuesday NZT), dozens of members of Chile's senate and two government ministers went into preventative isolation following recent contact with infected colleagues.
Continued Lockdown
US economy risks 'permanent damage' from long lockdowns, Mnuchin warns
Mnuchin’s comments came in a joint appearance before the Senate banking committee with Jerome Powell, the chairman of the Federal Reserve. Appearing via video link, the pair offered a stark assessment of the fragile state of the economy and warned of worse to come. “I think the jobs numbers will be worse before they get better,” Mnuchin said, adding that the overall economy too was likely to weaken in the near term before starting to recover towards the end of the year.
Coronavirus US: New Jersey gym-goer arrested defying lockdown
Atilis Gym in Bellmawr reopened Monday, defying Governor Phil Murphy's order for non-essential businesses to stay shuttered to slow the spread of coronavirus. One gym-goer was pictured wearing a face mask and a vest that read 'Only you can prevent dad bods' being led away in handcuffs by Bellmawr police Tuesday Gym owners say the facility has introduced measures for people to return safely including only operating at 20 percent capacity
Spain's leader asks parliament for 2 more weeks of lockdown
Spain’s prime minister appears before parliament on Wednesday to ask for its endorsement to extend the state of emergency that his government has used to rein in the country's coronavirus outbreak that has killed at least 27,000 people. It would be the fifth two-week extension to the state of emergency, which is currently set to expire on Sunday. The government wants to extend it until June 7.
Complying with lockdown does become harder over time – here's why
Sir Patrick Vallance, chief scientific adviser to the UK government, said that this delay was necessary because people would get “fed up” of following rules. Delaying the start of the lockdown, the theory went, would make sure the public wouldn’t run out of patience with the restrictions when the outbreak was at its worst. The idea that the public would be susceptible to this “behavioural fatigue” prompted critique from some scientists as well as support from others. Was the government correct to think that adherence would fall over time?
Russian Teenagers Found Partying On Goa Beach Amid Lockdown, Detained
A group of teenage Russians, including girls, was detained by police for partying on a beach in north Goa, an official said on Tuesday. The teenagers were found drinking and partying at an isolated area on Ashwem beach on Sunday in violation of lockdown norms and other government rules and were subsequently detained, he said. All the Russians who were detained by the Pernem police were found to be minors and in their teens, said Deputy Superintendent of Police (Mapusa) Gajanan Prabhudesai, citing personal details from their passports.
'I miss dancing': Elderly South Koreans lament loss of 'playground' as senior discos shut
Yoon Ji-won, the ex-hotelier, says Korea’s young clubbers took away her “playground.” “Why should we suffer? We wore masks and put on sanitary gels before dancing. All of us were very careful not to get into any sort of trouble because we knew it could really kill us, you know, when you’re my age,” the 61-year-old said. Another jitterbug veteran who identified himself only as ‘Qingdao Wind,’ says he has moved from colatecs to hiking and camping because his dance friends are now spending time in Geomdansan, a mountain near Misari, east of Seoul. “I also like camping, but there’s nothing like gliding through the dance floor with a partner and some music,” he said.
A U.S. Expat in China Weighs the Decision of Where to Shelter in Place
Chris Tuazon, a copywriter from California who resides in the southern Chinese city of Shenzhen with his wife, Laura, their two daughters, and his mother-in-law, faced a conundrum similar to that of Defoe’s bachelor. Seeing the increasing number of covid-19 cases as the country began to shelter in place, Tuazon stayed awake at night, wondering if he should take his whole family back to the U.S. In the video above, Tuazon offers a visual journal of the eighty-odd days his family spent in lockdown, including their deliberations over whether to stay in China or travel to the U.S.
Learning in lockdown across the globe: The challenges facing Shropshire's teachers and students
The transition to online learning has been tough enough for some, but international students at Acton Burnell's Concord College are having to learn from a variety of different time zones. While teachers have had to overcome significant challenges, commitment to studies have continued with one student in America even getting up at 2am to turn up for his virtual morning lessons. Just before Covid-19 struck, staff at the college had written a document focussing on ‘anywhere anytime learning’.
As lockdowns fuel domestic abuse, social media users fight back
When British teenager Kaitlyn McGoldrick heard domestic violence was increasing under lockdown, she posted a video on social media showing victims how to make a silent emergency call to police without their attackers finding out. “I just wanted to get the message out there that there are still places you can go,” said McGoldrick, 14, a volunteer police cadet whose post has had more than 50,000 views on the TikTok video-sharing platform. As the coronavirus measures trap victims under the same roof as abusers, the United Nations has called domestic violence a “shadow pandemic,” and the issue has led to a flurry of online campaigns by charities, celebrities and ordinary social media users. Inundated with positive responses to her video, McGoldrick plans to share more advice posts with backing from the local police youth volunteer group to which she belongs.
Coronavirus: WA border lockdown set to be in place for months
Premier Mark McGowan claims Western Australia’s top health officer has advised to keep the border lockdown in place for another several months.
Lockdown poetry parties 'bring families closer'
A poet who specialises in health and wellbeing said poetry could help people feel "less alone" during the pandemic. Beth Calverley, from Bristol, created The Poetry Machine in 2015 to help people "put their feelings into words". During lockdown, she has worked online and with families and the hospital where she is also poet in residence. Bristol Royal Infirmary said her specially written poems "embodied everything we as staff are feeling for our patients and their loved ones". After almost all her pre-existing work until next year had been cancelled or postponed, Ms Calverley said the months ahead looked "very uncertain".
Coronavirus lockdown leaves international tourists stranded in Australia
The Colombian trio are not the only tourists stranded in Australia due to restricted international travel. According to the Department of Home Affairs, there are more than 110,000 tourists in the country. Many nations are in the process of repatriating their citizens but with air travel still heavily restricted and flight tickets often expensive, tourists remain in limbo about when they will be able to return home.
Why I'm nervous about the end of lockdown
The role of heat and humidity - a subject of particularly passionate debate - is probably what worries me most, living in one of the southern hemisphere's few temperate countries. Of the 17 nations with more than 50,000 confirmed cases, only Brazil and India have been outside the temperate, arid and high-altitude zones that a climate-based model would suggest are most likely to encourage infection. For much of the world, where spring is gradually turning to summer, seasonal variation in COVID-19's reproduction rate would offer the prospect of a welcome slowdown in the coming months. Here in Australia, though, a mild autumn is now giving way to the first bite of winter. As I step into the cool afternoon air onto a main street that's as busy as I've seen it in months, that's not a comforting thought.
Brazil coronavirus outbreak worsens as country could soon be No. 2 in cases
Brazil’s coronavirus outbreak worsened on Wednesday and the South American nation could soon have the second-highest number of cases in the world as the Health Ministry reported 888 new deaths and nearly 20,000 new infections in a single day.
Scientific Viewpoint
UK government scientists looking at how to ease coronavirus lockdown faster for remote areas
The government’s top scientists are looking at ways of lifting the lockdown at a faster rate in remote parts of the UK that have very few or no coronavirus cases. The chief scientific adviser to the Ministry of Defence Dame Angela Maclean today said location “was a huge focus” for government scientists when looking at lockdown restrictions and that the UK’s islands were “particularly interesting”.
Coronavirus lockdown should not be eased until 'track and trace' is a success, say government advisers
Boris Johnson should resist calls to ease the lockdown including reopening schools until a new system to trace the spread of coronavirus is a proven success, according to two members of the government's scientific advisory council. The prime minister must decide in the next 10 days whether to reopen schools and allow those in non-essential jobs to return to work at the start of June, something he set as an ambition in an address to the nation 10 days ago. However Sky News understands that the government has been warned by its scientific advisers not to proceed until the "contact tracing" system is up and running and, importantly, is a proven success.
How can countries know when it's safe to ease coronavirus lockdowns?
Even when new case numbers are low, lifting restrictions will always carry a risk of a second wave of infections. South Korea brought its outbreak under control with a stringent policy of testing, isolation and contact tracing. In recent weeks, the country was reporting only around 10 new cases per day. However, following eased restrictions from 6 May, the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention last week confirmed 102 new cases linked to nightclubs in Seoul. As a result, some clubs and bars have been ordered to close again.
Coronavirus: Scientists suggest rolling cycle of 50 day lockdown followed by 30 days of ‘normality’
Scientists have suggested a rolling cycle of 50 days of lockdown followed by 30 days of “normality” to help manage the coronavirus outbreak. Britons have spent weeks cooped up indoors as government officials work to protect the NHS and save lives. With the weather warming up and other countries opening their borders, “lockdown fatigue” has set in for many. Severe concerns have also been raised about how the “stay at home” message is impacting the economy, with a huge rise in the number claiming unemployment benefits.
Coronavirus Resurgence
China's new outbreak shows signs that coronavirus could be changing
Chinese doctors are seeing the coronavirus manifest differently among patients in its new cluster of cases in the northeast region compared to the original outbreak in Wuhan, suggesting that the pathogen may be changing in unknown ways and complicating efforts to stamp it out. Patients found in the northern provinces of Jilin and Heilongjiang appear to carry the virus for a longer period of time and take longer to test negative, Qiu Haibo, one of China’s top critical care doctors, told state television on Tuesday. Patients in the northeast also appear to be taking longer than the one to two weeks observed in Wuhan to develop symptoms after infection, and this delayed onset is making it harder for authorities to catch cases before they spread, said Qiu, who is now in the northern region treating patients.
New Lockdown
Russian Province Reinstates Lockdown After Renewed Coronavirus Spike
The Saratov region in southern Russia has reinstated its ban on outdoor walks and activities, a top regional official said Monday after a nearly weeklong spike in new coronavirus cases. Local authorities had eased the restrictions last Tuesday, the day Russian President Vladimir Putin lifted a nationwide “non-working” period that was intended to slow the outbreak. The Saratov region reported more than 100 new cases every day since May 13, bringing its total from 1,232 to 1,980 in a week.
Chinese city put under Wuhan-style lockdown after fresh coronavirus outbreak
Chinese authorities have imposed strict lockdown measures in the north-eastern city of Shulan amid fears of a fresh Covid-19 outbreak. Shulan, home to around 700,000 residents, has had 19 confirmed cases of coronavirus since May 7, according to China Daily, which described it as the ‘latest pandemic hotspot in the country’. Earlier this month, officials reclassified the city as ‘high risk’ following a cluster of new infections connected to a woman who had not travelled and with no known exposure to the virus.