(from The Guardian)
- The number of coronavirus cases worldwide passed 30 million, according to the Johns Hopkins University tracker. The global death toll stands at 947,919 people and is expected to pass 1 million by 1 October. The US accounts for than 22% of global cases, at 6.69m, and nearly 200,000 fatalities.
- US president Donald Trump said he expects to have available enough doses of a coronavirus vaccine for every American by April.
- Three people who tested positive for Covid-19 in a cluster in Melbourne have been hospitalised. There are 34 cases in the cluster in the suburb of Casey, with authorities saying the households breached Melbourne’s lockdown restrictions.
- Victoria has announced 21 new cases of coronavirus and seven more deaths. The Victorian premier, Daniel Andrews, has urged anti-lockdown protesters not to gather following reports of more planned protests in Melbourne on Saturday. Public health authorities are racing to stop infections growing in the Casey and Dandenong council areas on the Melbourne’s south-east rim, which now has 90 active cases.
- The UK government has hinted at second national lockdown amid reports of a plan to “circuit break” the virus. The UK’s health secretary, Matt Hancock, told Sky News: “The number of people in hospital is doubling every eight days or so ... we will do what it takes to keep people safe.”
- Greek authorities have also been tightened restrictions in Athens and in Spain the regional government of Madrid has announced a partial lockdown of some districts.
- France reported an unprecedented 13,215 new confirmed cases of Covid-19 over the past 24 hours. The health ministry also said that the total number of deaths from Covid-19 increased by 154 to 31,249, the highest daily toll in three months.
- The European Union has agreed to buy 300m doses of an as yet unapproved coronavirus vaccine being developed by Sanofi and GSK.
- Australia’s national cabinet agreed on Friday to begin easing travel caps on international arrivals. NSW, Queensland and WA have agreed to allow more people into hotel quarantine, which will lift the number of returned travellers from 4,000 to 6,000 per week. Labor has said the plan does not go far enough to assist the tens of thousands of Australians stranded overseas.
- Prime minister Scott Morrison said Australia was looking again at a trans-Tasman travel bubble, where New Zealanders could come into Australia without quarantine.
Poland and Indonesia report record daily coronavirus casesPoland reported 1,002 new coronavirus cases on Saturday, according to the health ministry’s Twitter account, the highest daily increase since the pandemic began, Reuters reports.
The new record comes days after the authorities tightened conditions under which doctors are obliged to send patients for testing. Critics say the new rules may limit the number of people going for tests.
Meanwhile, Indonesia reported its biggest daily rise in coronavirus infections, with 4,168 new cases on Saturday, taking the total to 240,687, data from the country’s health ministry showed.
The data added 112 new deaths, taking the total to 9,448, the biggest death toll in south-east Asia.
In the Philippines, the health ministry reported 3,962 new coronavirus infections and 100 additional deaths, with both numbers the highest in five days. In a bulletin, the ministry said total confirmed cases have risen to 283,460, the highest in south-east Asia, while deaths have reached 4,930
India has reported 93,337 new cases of Covid-19 in the past 24 hours, and 1,247 more deaths.
It takes the country’s total case numbers to 5.3 million, and deaths to 85,619.
India has been reporting highest single-day rise in cases every day for the past five weeks, and is expected to become the worst-hit country in the world within weeks, surpassing the US, AP reports
Victoria police make arrests at anti-lockdown protest in MelbourneVictoria police say they have made a number of arrests at an anti-lockdown protest at Elsternwick in south-east Melbourne.
“While we know the majority of the community are doing the right thing, the behaviour of these selfish few who choose to blatantly ignore the direction will not be tolerated,” Victoria Police tweeted. Read more
UK police urge people to obey rules over sunny weekendPolice officers have prevented a wedding party going ahead as forces urge people to comply with coronavirus restrictions over the warm, sunny weekend.
Greater Manchester police said officers stopped restrictions being breached after responding to reports of a wedding party at a house in Wythenshawe on Friday evening.
“Police attended and found that a gazebo had been erected in the garden of a property,” the force tweeted . “Officers prevented the illegal gathering before restrictions were breached.”
The Met Office has forecast a weekend of largely dry, bright and fine weather, with temperatures reaching up to 24C (75.2F).
Lockdown restrictions increasingly likely for London
It is increasingly likely that lockdown restrictions will soon be needed to slow the spread of coronavirus in London, the capital’s mayor has said.
Sadiq Khan said action should be taken before the virus spirals out of control, and leaders were considering measures already imposed in other parts of the UK. He said the government should ensure there was a fully functioning testing system in place.
In a statement, he said he had held an emergency meeting with London council leaders, the government and Public Heath England to discuss the next steps.
The prime minister has said that we are now seeing the start of a second wave of Covid-19 across the UK.
Londoners should also know that I am extremely concerned by the latest evidence I’ve seen today from public health experts about the accelerating speed at which Covid-19 is now spreading here in London.
It is increasingly likely that, in London, additional measures will soon be required to slow the spread of the virus.
We will be considering some of the measures which have already been imposed in other parts of the UK.
I am of the firm view that we should not wait, as happened six months ago, for this virus to again spiral out of control before taking action.
The best thing for both public health and the economy is new restrictions imposed early, rather than a full lockdown when it’s too late – but the government must urgently ensure there is a fully functioning testing system.
UK facing 'perfect storm' after the easing of controls, senior scientist saysNicola Slawson - The Guardian
The epidemiologist whose modelling helped shape Britain’s coronavirus lockdown strategy has said that new coronavirus restrictions will be needed in England “sooner rather than later” if the government is to prevent the disease surging again.
Prof Neil Ferguson, who resigned from the government’s Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), said the country was facing a “perfect storm” after the easing of controls over the summer.
On Friday, Boris Johnson admitted in a speech that Britain was entering a second wave of coronavirus . It is understood that he is preparing to impose sweeping nationwide measures to curb the spread of Covid-19.
Johnson will spend the weekend in talks with officials in Downing Street, the Telegraph reports.
A holidaymaker who did not self-isolate after returning to Bolton was partly responsible for the area’s “extreme spike” in coronavirus cases, the council leader has said, PA reports.
Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Bolton Council leader David Greenhalgh said:
We had somebody who did not adhere to quarantine, did not stay the 14 days, literally went on a pub crawl with a number of mates.
From that incident which took place over a weekend - (they) visited a number of premises - led to a large number of individual transmissions from that one person which you can imagine then is like holding back the tide because he then became symptomatic two days after they had all gone on this pub crawl.
He was positive-tested the following day.
That is four or five days where all the people he was in contact with have been going about their normal day-to-day business.
Mainland China reported 14 new Covid-19 cases on Friday, down from 32 cases reported a day earlier, Reuters said, citing the Chinese national health authority.
The national health commission said in a statement that all new cases were imported infections involving travellers from overseas. It also reported 24 new asymptomatic cases, up from 20 a day earlier, though China does not classify these patients without symptoms as confirmed Covid-19 cases.
The total number of Covid-19 cases for mainland China stands at 85,269, while the death toll remains unchanged at 4,634.