12.16am BST
00:16

More people from black and Asian backgrounds, as well as over-65s, are being urged to volunteer to help ensure potential coronavirus vaccines work for everyone.

Researchers say 270,000 people across the UK have signed up for vaccine studies but thousands more are needed, in particular from groups more vulnerable to Covid.

Just 7% of those who have signed up to NHS registers so far are from minority ethnic groups – half the proportion in the overall population. Of those who have signed up, 11,000 are Asian and 1,200 are black. More people aged over the age of 65 or with chronic diseases are also needed:

11.58pm BST
23:58

Czech government closes bars and schools

The Czech government ordered bars, restaurants and clubs closed from Wednesday and shifted schools to distance learning as it puts new measures in place to curb the fast spread of novel coronavirus cases, Reuters reports.

The Czech Republic is experiencing the strongest surge in Europe when adjusted for population as the number of infections detected since the outbreak began has soared to nearly 120,000, from around 25,000 at the beginning of September.

Hospitals are starting to feel that strain as the number of patients have doubled since the start of October to over 2,000.

The government has been seeking to avoid repeating the strict lockdowns imposed in the spring, which sent the economy into a record contraction. The summer saw a relaxation of restrictions after the country came through the first wave of the pandemic with far fewer cases than western neighbours.

The Czech Republic and neighbouring Slovakia have registered big increases in coronavirus infections, setting a record for the fourth straight day. Photograph: Petr David Josek/AP

From Wednesday, public gatherings would be limited to six people, alcohol consumption in public spaces would be banned and masks would be required at public transport stops. Takeaway orders will still be available until 8pm.

Schools, expect for pre-schools, would move to online lessons until 1 November – a measure that companies and especially hospitals have worried would affect staffing. This extends distance learning that had already been in place for secondary schools.

The measures will be in place until the start of November, and the government said that while schools would definitely reopen on 2 November, other measures would be relaxed according to the epidemiological situation. The government had already tightened curbs to limit restaurant openings and widen the use of masks.

11.46pm BST
23:46

Fauci says holding large rallies ‘asking for trouble’

Top US infectious diseases expert Dr Anthony Fauci has told CNN, ahead of the Trump rally in Florida on Monday night that holding large rallies is “asking for trouble”.

CNN
(@CNN)

Dr. Fauci says Pres. Trump resuming in-person rallies is “asking for trouble” and “now is … a worse time to do that because when you look at what’s going on in the United States it’s really very troublesome. A number of states, right now, are having increase in test positivity” pic.twitter.com/oXovPV7lyk

October 12, 2020

The director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases told CNN that Americans should be vigilant, as coronavirus cases tick up in many parts of the country. “We’ve seen that when you have situations of congregate settings where there are a lot of people without masks, the data speak for themselves,” Fauci told CNN. “It happens. And now is even more so a worse time to do that, because when you look at what’s going on in the United States, it’s really very troublesome.”

Trump’s rally crowds have recently flouted masks and social distancing – measures that could slow the spread of the disease. The president has planned to hold rallies in battleground states all weeks, without any new safety precautions.

11.36pm BST
23:36

US President Donald Trump tests negative for Covid

US President Donald Trump has tested negative for Covid-19 and he is not infectious to others, the White House physician said on Monday.

In a memo released by the White House ahead of Trump’s rally in Florida, Dr. Sean Conley said Trump had tested negative on consecutive days using an Abbott Laboratories BinaxNOW antigen card.

He said the negative tests and other clinical and laboratory data “indicate a lack of detectable viral replication.”

Conley did not specify how many consecutive days Trump had tested negative for.

Kayleigh McEnany
(@PressSec)

An update from President @realDonaldTrump’s physician: pic.twitter.com/XTxs2BjImt

October 12, 2020

11.31pm BST
23:31

Summary

Hello and welcome to today’s live pandemic coverage with me, Helen Sullivan.

I’ll be bringing you the latest from around the world for the next few hours. You can find me on Twitter @helenrsullivan.

Top US infectious diseases expert Dr Anthony Fauci has told CNN, ahead of the Trump rally in Florida on Monday night that holding large rallies is “asking for trouble”.

Meanwhile the World Health Organization has warned that the number of new Covid cases is at its highest level since the start of the pandemic. Speaking at the regular Monday press conference in Geneva, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the organisation’s director general, also called ideas of herd immunity “scientifically and ethically problematic”.

Here are the key developments from the last few hours:

US President Donald Trump has tested negative for Covid-19 and he is not infectious to others, the White House physician said on Monday. In a memo released by the White House, Dr. Sean Conley said Trump had tested negative on consecutive days using an Abbott Laboratories BinaxNOW antigen card. He said the negative tests and other clinical and laboratory data “indicate a lack of detectable viral replication.”
Top US infectious disease expert Anthony Fauci said the president Donald Trump’s campaign team should take down an advertisement that draws on a public statement Fauci made that he says is being used out of context. The ad, released last week, discusses Trump’s effort to recover from Covid-19, as well as his administration’s work to address the coronavirus pandemic. The 30-second spot uses older remarks from Fauci in a way that suggests he was praising the president. Fauci said the ad was “unfortunate and really disappointing”.
The Czech government will order bars, restaurants and clubs to close from Wednesday until 3 November and shift most schools to distance learning as it puts new measures in place to curb the fast spread of Covid-19 cases in the country. Public gatherings will also be limited to six people, alcohol consumption in public spaces will be banned, and masks will be required at public transport stops.
France reported a three-month high in ICU patients. Health authorities said the number of people treated in intensive care units for Covid-19 surpassed the 1,500 threshold on Monday, for the first time since 27 May, raising fears of local lockdowns in the country.
In France, prime minister Jean Castex has urged people to limit gatherings in their homes but said he “cannot regulate” them. He added that the battle against the virus will last “several months more, I think”.
In Spain, the government agreed protocols to establish travel corridors between European states and the Canary and Balearic Islands, both of which rely heavily on tourism and have been hit hard by the Covid crisis. Unemployment in the Balearics has risen by 90% since last year as a result of coronavirus.
For the second day in a row, Iran has announced the highest single-day death toll from the coronavirus, with 272 new victims, as well as its single-day highest count of new cases, with 4,206.
Malaysia announced that it will impose some restrictions on movement in its capital city and in the neighbouring state of Selangor from Wednesday, as the country grapples with a fresh surge of cases.
In China, the city of Qingdao in eastern Shandong province announced plans to test each of its nine million residents, after six new cases emerged linked to a hospital treating infections in returning international travellers.
The UK prime minister, Boris Johnson, set out a new, three-tiered system for Covid restrictions to “simplify and standardise” rules in England. The city region of Liverpool was immediately put into the “very high” category, with pubs and bars closed and almost all household mixing banned.

Updated
at 11.34pm BST





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