Dominic Minghella on “Learning to live with Covid”

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England: Care home Covid-19 deaths double in a fortnight

Please check your care home lockdown plans now, this could escalate quite quickly.


Portugal: 75% of Covid-19 deaths are now in the over-70s

Portugal: coronavirus infection rates rising fastest amongst the 80+ age group

We have to learn to live with Covid.

“Learning to live with Covid” will be coming to your country soon. Be prepared.


Boris Johnson tells Britons to “learn to live with Covid


UK: Third Covid-19 wave is the worst yet

Iceland: domestic Covid-19 restrictions reimposed one month after reopening

A 200-person gathering limit, one-metre distancing, and restricted opening hours for bars and nightclubs will be reimposed in Iceland just four weeks after all domestic restrictions due to COVID-19 were lifted. The restrictions are based on recommendations from Chief Epidemiologist Þórólfur Guðnason and were decided on at a lengthy cabinet meeting today. At a briefing in Reykjavík yesterday, Þórólfur stated that COVID case numbers were rising at an exponential rate despite the country’s high vaccination rates.

On June 26, Iceland lifted all domestic restrictions due to COVID-19, one year and four months after the very first social restrictions were imposed due to the pandemic. The country also loosened border restrictions on July 1, allowing travellers with proof of vaccination or previous infection to enter the country without testing or quarantine. Infection rates have risen over the past two weeks, and Iceland now reports 371 active cases, up from 60 cases just eight days ago. report




Image by Sharon Ang from Pixabay

Australia: Sydney is “on fire” with coronavirus

“Sydney is on fire with this virus and we need a ring of steel around Sydney.”
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews has called for more to be done after New South Wales Chief health officer Kerry Chant described the situation in NSW as ‘a national emergency’.

New South Wales recorded 136 local COVID-19 cases today, 53 of which were infectious in the community. Mr Andrews said New South Wales seemed to have “crossed a threshold” with a surge in COVID-19 cases.

9news.comau report


The Trans-Tasman bubble that allows for travel between Australia and New Zealand has been closed “for at least 8 weeks according to


UK: Despite vaccinations, one in six council areas in England now recording highest Covid numbers since last summer

The list of councils includes almost all local authority areas in north-east England, close to a half in south-west England and nearly a third in Yorkshire and the Humber.  Data also shows that every local area in England is now recording coronavirus rates above the symbolic level of 100 cases per 100,000 people – the first time this has happened since early January, at the peak of the second wave.

Some 50 of the 315 local authority areas in England (16%) are currently recording Covid-19 case rates that are higher than any point since mass testing began, PA analysis shows.  Eight of these are in north-east England: Redcar & Cleveland (1,268.0 cases per 100,000 people – the highest anywhere in England); Middlesbrough (1,178.9); Hartlepool (1,061.3); Sunderland (1,036.7); Stockton-on-Tees (944.5); Darlington (863.3); County Durham (783.3); and Northumberland (674.6). In neighbouring Yorkshire & the Humber, six areas currently have record rates: Doncaster (729.1), Wakefield (667.2), Leeds (599.4), Richmondshire (575.1), Hambleton (552.4) and East Riding of Yorkshire (517.9).

Guardian report

Map from

Israel: fully vaccinated tourists banned from entering the country

Vaccinated tourists will not be allowed to enter Israel on August 1, as previously decided, Health Ministry’s Director General Prof. Nachman Ash said in a press briefing on Sunday.

“We are postponing the date for the entrance of tourists, it is not going to happen on August 1,” Ash noted, adding that a new date is not set yet. “Unfortunately, the current situation does not permit us to allow tourists to enter,” he added.

Israel also decided that verified coronavirus carriers who breach isolation will be criminally charged.

Image by b1-foto from Pixabay

English Freedom Day: Lions led by Zombies

A short reminder of what happened after “Freedom Day” was announced in the Czech Republic on July 2nd 2020:


 Covid-19 cases after “Freedom Day” in the Czech Republic in 2020:

 Covid-19 deaths after “Freedom Day” in the Czech Republic in July 2020:

English Freedom Day – Lions led by Zombies.


The waxing and waning of the coronavirus pandemic in Europe shows new danger areas emerging

Europe has seen major changes in coronavirus case rates over the last two months. In many areas of Europe covid case rates have dropped sufficiently to allow restrictions to be eased, but there are notable exceptions. The Covid-19 rate in Spain now appears to be as bad, if not worse, than two months ago, and the Netherlands has seen a dramatic increase in numbers recently.

In the case of both Spain and the Netherlands, the rates increased following the decision to unlock their countries too quickly, and in both cases those decisions have had to reversed within weeks.  Greece too appears to be seeing a new wave, and these areas now represent the largest threat to Europe’s strategy to keeping infection rates down.

Data maps courtesy of ECDC


Spain: 5th wave of coronavirus storms across the country, curfews set to be reintroduced


Netherlands: the reproduction R rate is now 2.17 – the highest since February 2020

UK Chief Medical Officer – lockdown in 5 weeks

“I don’t think we should underestimate the fact that we could get into trouble again surprisingly fast”

The UK Government’s top medic has warned the number of people in hospital with coronavirus could reach “quite scary” levels within weeks and new coronavirus restrictions in England could be needed in just five weeks.

Chris Whitty’s stark warning came just days before has warned just days before Boris Johnsons’ ‘Freedom Day’ on Monday (July 19). The Chief Medical Officer sounded the alarm over a potential “scary” growth in hospitalisations which could leave the NHS “in trouble again surprisingly fast” once restrictions are lifted. report




Spain: 5th wave of coronavirus storms across the country, curfews set to be reintroduced

The Covid-19 incidence in Spain has soared above 368 cases per 100,000 inhabitants. The Valencian Community has approved curfews in 32 municipalities, the Canary Islands also requests curfews and Catalonia advances the closure of activities and limits social gatherings.

“Covid does not give truce in Spain and the epidemic curve continues unbridled in this fifth wave of explosive growth . The accumulated incidence at 14 days has shot up 80% in the last week and, in the absence of two communities (Balearic Islands and Catalonia) that this Monday have not reported the data, it already reaches 368 cases per 100,000 inhabitants.

The vaccination campaign has become the key factor that marks the evolution of the pandemic and, with about 46% of the Spanish population with the complete schedule, infections are primed with those under 30 years of age, the population group that has not yet has had massive access to the vaccine: thus, the cumulative incidence in twentysomethings has skyrocketed to about 800 cases per 100,000 inhabitants.

With this scenario on the table, the communities rush the implementation of new measures and return the toughest restrictions to the game board: the Valencian Community, for example, has already obtained the endorsement of justice to decree a new curfew in 32 municipalities and the limitation of meetings throughout its territory.

The Canary Islands have also asked for the restriction of night mobility and Catalonia, which last week closed nightlife, has approved bringing the closure of non-essential activities forward to 0.30 and limiting social gatherings to a maximum of 10 people. In a similar vein, from this Tuesday Asturias closes the interior of nightlife. Other communities, such as Madrid, rule out applying new restrictions at this time. “

El Pais report (in Spanish)


Australia: Sydney bracing for weeks of lockdown – ‘Do not leave your home’

Stunning headlines from the Sydney Morning Post today: “Do not leave your home’: Sydney bracing for weeks of lockdown”. Sydney is bracing for a lockdown that could stretch for weeks, with surging case numbers prompting tighter restrictions as the number of people in strict isolation doubled to 14,000 in a single day.

Full report in the Sydney Morning Post



Photo by Luke White on Unsplash

Australia Sydney: coronavirus lockdown restrictions tightened and extended

We are sending out this special update to alert you to the new (tighter) set of restrictions that will apply to Greater Sydney from 5pm today 9th July 2021.  The existing four reasons to leave home remain unchanged. The restrictions in regional NSW also remain unchanged. From 5pm we must all remain within our own local government area, or within 10 kilometres of home for exercise and outdoor recreation.

  • Outdoor public gatherings will be limited to two people
  • No carpooling between non-household members
  • Only one person per household, per day, may leave the home for shopping
  • Browsing in shops is not allowed, only shopping for essentials

From Sunday, funerals will be limited to 10 people in total.

Overnight, 44 new cases were recorded of which 27 were out in the community for at least part of their infectious period.

The latest figures from NSW Health show there are 43 people with COVID-19 in hospital, 10 of whom are in intensive care. Four of the patients in ICU require ventilation.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian has also foreshadowed extending the lockdown beyond July 16.

NSW is facing “the biggest challenge we have faced since the pandemic started … unless there is a dramatic turnaround in the numbers, I can’t see how we would be in a position to ease restrictions by next Friday,” Ms Berejiklian said.

The most recent figures available to us show that 8.17 per cent of the population is fully vaccinated while 25.72 per cent have had one shot.

The Sydney Morning Herald Newsletter


UK coronavirus cases already amongst the highest in the world with 11 days until “Freedom Day”

The UK’s daily coronavirus case rate is now amongst the highest in the world, with just a few small nations still showing a higher rate. The recent explosive growth of the Delta variant means that the UK will have the highest rate of infections in the world on or around the 19th July 2021, or “Freedom day” as it is being referred to in Britain.

The UK government has pinned its hopes on the vaccination program providing a “wall of protection” to the British population, despite being fully aware that the vaccine wall of protection surrounding the population of Israel is already starting to break down.  


Israel: 56% of serious coronavirus cases in hospitals are fully vaccinated


Israel: Pfizer vaccine effectiveness against coronavirus infection has dropped to just 64%