Friday 9 October
- Planned new Covid-19 rules for North of England are not enough, says, scientists.
- Bedside Covid tests show promise in hospitals.
- France announces new restrictions as case top 18,000 for a second day.
- Jordan to unveil over 100 testing sites in heightened Covid-19 efforts.
- Lebanon’s Covid-19 surge: What went wrong?
- China officially joins COVAX vaccine initiative.
Planned new Covid-19 rules for North of England are not enough, says, scientists
The Guardian says scientists advising the UK government believe the planned new Covid-19 restrictions do not go far enough and that “fringe” anti-lockdown epidemiologists are gaining too much attention, the Guardian has learned.
Members of the SAGE believe that a potential shutdown of pubs and restaurants in the north and Midlands, which is expected next week after delays that one MP has called “reckless”, are unlikely to bring cases down to a more manageable level.
Read the full story on The Guardian
Bedside Covid tests show promise in hospitals
BBC News says a rapid “bedside” test for coronavirus could help cut the spread of the infection in hospitals, scientists say.
In their study, the rapid test took under two hours to show results, while standard tests – which have to be sent to laboratories – took much longer.
Researchers say this meant patients taking the rapid test could be isolated more quickly when positive, potentially reducing the spread of the virus.
Read the full story on BBC News
France announces new restrictions as case top 18,000 for a second day
France24 says the French cities of Lyon, Lille, Grenoble and Saint-Étienne will go on maximum coronavirus alert from Saturday, the French Health Minister said on Thursday.
Paris, Marseille and the overseas territory of Guadeloupe have also been put on maximum alert in recent weeks, leading to the closure of local bars and cafés.
“The health situation in France, alas, is continuing to worsen,” he said. “Every day in France, more and more people are being infected, more and more are falling ill, and more and more are suffering serious effects that require hospitalisation.”
Read the full story on France24
Jordan to unveil over 100 testing sites in heightened Covid-19 efforts
Arab News says Jordan’s Ministry of Health is designating over 100 fixed Covid-19 testing sites across the country, with a particular focus in high-risk densely-populated areas, state news agency Petra has reported.
The screening sites will be closely monitored, Health Ministry Assistant General for Primary Healthcare said, to ensure they follow clear guidelines in the collection, transportation, and testing of samples.
Read the full story on Arab News
Lebanon’s Covid-19 surge: What went wrong?
Aljazeera says for more than two months, Lebanon has been sliding into a worsening coronavirus outbreak that is now threatening to overwhelm the country’s fragile healthcare system.
For the first few months of the outbreak, crisis-hit Lebanon introduced a total lockdown that kept daily cases in the single or low double-digits.
But health policy experts say the absence of a long-term strategy and poor implementation of the country’s post-lockdown reopening are largely to blame for the sharp recent increase in cases.
Read the full story on Aljazeera
China officially joins COVAX vaccine initiative
“This is an important step China has taken to uphold the concept of a shared community of health for all and to honour its commitment to turn Covid-19 vaccines into a global public good,” China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson said on Friday.
Read the full story on CNN
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A quick look at the other top headlines
EU’s new migration pact comes under the spotlight with ministers amid internal divisions
Euronews says EU ministers met today to discuss the new migration pact, amid tensions between the Member States over the proposal.
The meeting took place via video conference, allowing them to talk about the issue for the first time since it was announced in late September.
Mali’s opposition chief Soumaila Cisse released after prisoner swap
Africanews says Mali’s presidency on Thursday announced that opposition leader Soumaïla Cissé had been freed.
The announcement, over Twitter, added that Cisse was on his way back to the capital Bamako.
Syria’s Assad agrees to normalise relations with Israel if conditions are met
MEM says Syrian regime President, Bashar Al-Assad, said in an interview with a Russian news agency that he is not against the idea of establishing “normal relations” with the occupation, but only if certain conditions are met.
Jakarta governor to take protesters’ demand to repeal labour law to President Widodo
CNA says the governor of Indonesia’s capital on Friday said he would inform President Joko Widodo of protesters’ demand for a polarising new labour law to be repealed, as a growing number of regional leaders oppose the new legislation.