While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, April 11

Lifting lockdowns too quickly could spark ‘deadly resurgence’, says WHO

Any premature lifting of restrictions imposed to control the Covid-19 pandemic could lead to a fatal resurgence of the new coronavirus, the World Health Organisation (WHO) warned on Friday.

WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said that while some states were considering ways to ease the restrictions which have placed around half of humanity under some form of lockdown, doing so too quickly could be dangerous.

“I know that some countries are already planning the transition out of stay-at-home restrictions. WHO wants to see restrictions lifted as much as anyone,” he told a virtual press conference in Geneva.

“At the same time, lifting restrictions too quickly could lead to a deadly resurgence. The way down can be as dangerous as the way up if not managed properly. “WHO is working with affected countries on strategies for gradually and safely easing restrictions.”


Coronavirus: Trump says he thinks US loss of life will be less than projected

US President Donald Trump said on Friday he thinks the United States will lose fewer than the 100,000 lives initially projected to the coronavirus, and suggested the country is nearing its peak infection rate.

At a White House briefing, Trump said the number of new coronavirus cases in the United States is flattening, and said the situations in New Orleans, Louisiana, and Detroit, Michigan, are stabilising.

US deaths from the the virus topped 18,100 on Friday, according to a Reuters tally.


British PM Boris Johnson up and walking in Covid-19 recovery, as deaths near 9,000

Prime Minister Boris Johnson was back on his feet in his recovery from Covid-19 on Friday as Britain recorded its deadliest day yet in the coronavirus pandemic, with 980 more deaths taking the country’s overall toll to nearly 9,000.

The rise in deaths, which even exceeded the deadliest day reported so far in Italy, the country worst hit by the virus, comes as the government told Britons to obey a lockdown and resist going out in the spring sunshine over Easter.

“However warm the weather, however tempting your local beach or park, we need everyone to stay at home because in hospitals across the country NHS staff are battling day and night to keep desperately sick people breathing,” health minister Matt Hancock told a news conference.


Coronavirus: Apple, Google to create contact tracing technology to fight spread

Apple and Alphabet’s Google said on Friday that they will work together to create contact tracing technology that aims to slow the spread of the coronavirus by allowing users to opt into a system that catalogs other phones they have been near.

The rare collaboration between the two Silicon Valley companies, whose operating systems power 99 per cent of the world’s smartphones, could accelerate usage of apps that aim to get potentially infected individuals into testing or quarantine more quickly and reliably than existing systems in much of the world.

Such tracing will play a vital role in managing the virus once lockdown orders end, health experts say.


Football: West Ham players agree to defer salaries, manager Moyes takes 30% cut

Players at English Premier League side West Ham on Friday agreed to defer part of their wages during the coronavirus suspension, while manager David Moyes will take a 30 per cent pay cut.

The move comes just a day after top-flight rivals Southampton struck a similar deal with their players as clubs wrestle with the financial fallout of the virus which has shut down the sport for a month.

“The savings created by the measures will support the entire infrastructure of the club and enable us to retain jobs and continue to pay 100 per cent of staff salaries,” said a West Ham statement.


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