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A New Jersey mother and her three adult children have died from coronavirus, and three more relatives are in hospital, after they had a family dinner together, according to US media.
Grace Fusco, 73, and three of her children died on Wednesday and Thursday. Three more of her children are now in hospital.
Nineteen family members are now self-isolating, according to family representative Paradiso Fodera, and have waited nearly a week to learn the results of their virus tests.
“Why don’t the family members who are not hospitalised have the test results? This is a public health crisis,” Ms Fodera told CNN. “Why should athletes and celebrities without symptoms be given priority over a family that has been decimated by this virus?”
Health and science correspondent, BBC News
Research is happening at breakneck speed.
There are more than 20 vaccines in development.
One has begun human trials after unusually skipping any animal research to test either the safety or the effectiveness of the vaccine.
Other scientists are at the animal research stage and hope to get the results of human trials later in the year.
But even if scientists can celebrate having developed a vaccine this year, there is still the massive job of being able to mass-produce it.
It means, realistically, one would not be ready until at least the middle of next year.
All of this is happening on an unprecedented timescale and using new approaches to vaccines, so there are no guarantees everything will go smoothly.
Remember there are four coronaviruses that already circulate in human beings. They cause the common cold, and we don’t have vaccines for any of them.
In China, where the coronavirus first appeared, industrial production, sales and investment all fell in the first two months of the year, compared with the same period in 2019.
And the country’s industrial slowdown has been visible from space. Nasa said pollution-monitoring satellites had detected a significant drop in nitrogen dioxide over China, as the image below shows.
Evidence suggests that’s “at least partly” due to the economic slowdown caused by the outbreak.
China makes up a third of manufacturing globally, and is the world’s largest exporter of goods. The restrictions imposed there have affected the supply chains of big companies all around the world.
People in the UK – and many other parts of the world – have been told to avoid non-essential contact with others to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
With schools shutting and more people now working from home, many are feeling cut off from their everyday hobbies and social lives.
But the internet offers a means to stay connected and to keep us all entertained and educated through the days of isolation.
From workouts, cooking lessons and pub quizzes – here are just some of the ways people are using technology to lift their spirits.
Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon takes one final question from a journalist who says people have been in touch to say their urgent operations have been cancelled and asks if priorities have been changed in the health service to deal with the virus.
Ms Sturgeon replies: “We have been absolutely clear cancer treatment and urgent life-saving treatment should go ahead.”
And there the briefing from Scotland ends.
Just 20 deaths and 600 cases have been confirmed across a continent of 1.2 billion people but the virus is still spreading:
- Tunisia confirmed its first death – a 72-year-old woman who died on Thursday night in hospital after being transferred from her home in the eastern resort city of Sousse. The country now has 39 confirmed cases. Seven people have died in Egypt, nine in Algeria, two in Morocco, one in Sudan and one in Burkina Faso
- In Kenya, a pastor was suspended from his church after saying coronavirus was a hoax
- In South Africa, Health Minister Zweli Mkhize projected that “South Africans could expect at least 60% of the population to be infected overall”. He added that 24% of infections could be severe; the Committee to Protect Journalists expressed concern over newly passed regulations that criminalise disinformation about the pandemic and could potentially prompt other countries to adopt more repressive rules and censorship
- Chad and Niger confirmed their first cases
- In Zimbabwe, President Emmerson Mnangagwa ordered the closure of all schools, colleges and universities by 24 March in a bid to control and minimise the outbreak. So far, no Covid-19 case has been confirmed
- In Ghana, the professional body of pharmacists warned against the use of alcoholic beverages as sanitisers. Many people have turned to the use of locally manufactured gin (akpeteshie) – which is said to contain 100% alcohol – to make up for the scarcity of sanitisers
Asked about UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s suggestion that the tide can be turned in 12 weeks, Nicola Sturgeon says she hopes he is right but adds: “None of us can stand here and say with certainty when we will be in a position to lift these measures.”
Chief medical officer for Scotland Dr Catherine Calderwood reiterates the first minister’s message to comply with medical advice.
“All of the scientific advice tell us these measures will be effective in slowing the spread of the virus,” she says.
Policies to limit the spread of coronavirus would need to be in place for “at least most of a year” to prevent intensive care units being overwhelmed, according to official scientific advice to the government.
The documents, prepared by the UK’s Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), said alternating between more and less strict measures could “plausibly be effective at keeping the number of critical care cases within capacity”.
Ms Sturgeon says her government is helping business but adds that business “also has a role to play”.
She urges companies to “treat your workers fairly” by making sure they don’t have to come in if they can work from home.
“Let’s not look back in a few weeks and wish we had done more to protect ourselves,” she says.
Copyright: BBC News
Ms Sturgeon says her government will be “expanding the pay system which helps those who become unemployed into alternative jobs” including into those sectors which are expanding such as supermarkets.
“We will use government contracts to keep financial support flowing,” she adds.
She also expresses hope that there will be “a positive and substantial announcement from the chancellor later today”. She stresses the importance of helping businesses pay their employers.
Ms Sturgeon now urges the Scottish people not to have “one last night out”.
“You must not consider vital health advice to be merely optional,” she says.
She says understands younger people will want to socialise but adds: “I cannot be clearer – please do not think this advice applies to other people.”
“Life, right now, is not normal.”
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon starts by providing an update on the latest figures. The number of confirmed coronavirus cases has risen to 322 – an increase of 56 since yesterday.
The number of deaths has not increased.
She is joined by Economy Secretary Fiona Hyslop and chief medical officer – Dr Catherine Calderwood.
If you’re in self-isolation or avoiding gyms, you may be wondering how you can continue to stay active. We got a fitness trainer to show us some simple exercises to do while cooped up at home.
The UK’s chief negotiator in post-Brexit trade talks, David Frost, is self-isolating after showing symptoms of coronavirus.
It comes a day after the European Union’s lead negotiator, Michel Barnier, announced he had tested positive.
We are expecting a briefing from Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon to start at 12:30 GMT.
The total number of deaths in Scotland due to Covid-19 currently stands at six.
A man has been arrested for allegedly failing to self-isolate after arriving on the Isle of Man – thought to be the first person held in the British Isles for breaching quarantine rules.
The island passed emergency legislation requiring new arrivals to quarantine themselves for 14 days regardless of symptoms on Tuesday.
The 26-year-old man, who was arrested after failing to self-isolate on arrival, could face a fine of up to £10,000 or three months in prison.
Over in the US, some university students have also been defying warnings. Watch the video below of students flocking to Florida for their spring break.
Many children across the UK are spending their last day at school for the foreseeable future.
We have been hearing from some of the students who have had their exams cancelled about how they are feeling.
Aurelia Stoddar, a 17-year-old student from Leeds, was due to sit her A-levels in June and says the mood in her college “is quite tense” as they don’t know what that means for university applications.
She says she applied to study medicine at university and has “a lot of anxiety”.
“This would be the time we would have stopped seeing friends so much and been laser-focused on our exams, so I’m worried I’ll be graded on a mock exam I never thought was going to count.”
Oliver Todd, from Darlington, was also due to sit exams and says no-one in his sixth-form college “has a clue” what’s happening.
He added: “We’re missing 18th birthdays and all our lessons together before we all move apart. It’s just a very stressful time.”
It has become the first German state to order widespread restrictions on personal movement.
Stopping short of imposing a full lockdown, the state prime minister, Markus Soeder, said that, as of Saturday, leaving the house was only allowed with good reason, including going to work, shopping, visits to the doctor or pharmacy, supporting others or visiting partners.
Outdoor sports and activity are still allowed, but only alone or with people from the same household.
As many around the world self-isolate at home, some have been taking to their balconies to sing, dance and serenade their neighbours, like this opera singer and a guitar-toting retiree in Paris.