Here are five things you need to know about the coronavirus outbreak this Friday morning. We’ll have another update for you at 18:00 BST.
1. NHS virus tracing app ‘in place by end of month’
It wasn’t ready to accompany last week’s launch of the NHS test and trace system in England – but business minister Nadhim Zahawi says the NHS contact-tracing app should be in place by the end of June. NHS bosses have said a system to track people who have come into close contact with those with the virus is important to avoid a second surge in cases. Different methods are being used in each of the home nations, as our report explains.
2. Call to widen rules on face coverings
Face coverings should be compulsory in all places where social distancing is not possible – not just on public transport – says the doctors’ union. The comments from the British Medical Association come after the government said passengers in England must wear a face covering from 15 June. They are recommended in Scotland and Northern Ireland in places where social distancing is more difficult, while the Welsh government says it is a personal choice.
3. No return to ‘business as usual’ for dentists
While the government is allowing dentists in England to resume work from Monday, the British Dental Association is warning patients to expect only a “skeleton service” after a poll suggested just 36% would reopen. Some dentists say they were not given enough warning, while others lack the necessary protective kit.
4. Coronavirus and poverty: Is there a link?
The pandemic has not affected all communities equally, with wealth appearing to be a major factor. Stephanie Hegarty explores why poorer people are more likely to catch – and die from – Covid-19.
5. AstraZeneca boosts potential vaccine supply
British drug maker AstraZeneca says new deals will enable it to supply two billion doses of a virus vaccine, should the product being developed with Oxford University scientists prove effective. AstraZeneca has agreed to supply half of the doses to low and middle-income countries.
And don’t forget…
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