America News

AstraZeneca and Oxford defend Covid vaccine trials after questions raised in the U.S.

“We believe that this product will never be licensed in the U.S.,” one group of critical U.S.-based analysts wrote this week.

Covid mutations do not appear to be helping the virus spread more rapidly, study says

It comes as drugmakers and research centers scramble to deliver a safe and effective vaccine to help bring an end to the coronavirus pandemic.

Deutsche Bank bullish about the 2021 economic recovery — but there are two key risks

Deutsche Bank upgraded its global growth outlook for 2021 but cautioned that two key risks could still spoil the economic recovery from the coronavirus crisis.

No ski resorts and no fireworks: How Europeans will spend Christmas this year

There's one thing that most people are agreed upon: Christmas is not likely to be the same this year.

World’s largest medical glove maker becomes the epicenter of Malaysia’s Covid resurgence

Top Glove has shut 20 manufacturing sites in Malaysia after thousands of workers tested positive for the coronavirus disease.

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Europe News

'The Devil's underwear': Why don't Swedes use curtains?

To the strictest Lutherans, they're dismissed as 'djävulens kalsonger', the Devil's underwear. But even the most secular Swedes seem strangely averse to curtains. Richard Orange investigates this puzzling Swedish phenomenon.

Swedish royals test positive for Covid-19

Two members of Sweden's royal family, Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia, are quarantining after testing positive for Covid-19, the Swedish Royal Court announced on Thursday.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic in talks with Swedish football chiefs about international comeback

Sweden head coach Janne Andersson flew to Milan to meet with Zlatan Ibrahimovic about a potential return to the national team.

No more F**king: Austrian village to change name

Residents of an unfortunately-named Austrian town have finally grown weary of F**king.

’The Swiss way is right’: Switzerland defends decision to keep ski resorts open

A multinational effort may see ski slopes closed at resorts across Europe. Switzerland has decided to go its own way, promising to keep the slopes open through the winter.

Europe News is brought to you by TheLocal

BBC World News

Diego Maradona: Huge crowds bid farewell as Argentina grieves

Police struggle to keep control as tens of thousands come to pay respects to the late football legend.

Paris police officers suspended over beating of black music producer

Video of the three officers beating the music producer at his studio has caused an outcry in France.

Utah monolith: Internet sleuths got there, but its origins are still a mystery

The metal monolith sits deep in a desert easy to get lost in, so officials did not reveal its location.

Diego Maradona: Fans weep by football legend's coffin

Huge crowds gather at Argentina's presidential palace, seeking to pay their final respects to Diego Maradona.

Sri Lanka digs trench to keep elephants away from rubbish dump

Elephants have been swarming to a landfill site, where they have been eating harmful plastics.

The stately home acting as The Crown's Sandringham

Behind the scenes on the hit Netflix drama as Somerleyton Hall in Suffolk becomes Sandringham.

Coronavirus: How Europeans are preparing for Christmas and New Year

Measures designed to contain the coronavirus pandemic will change how millions of people celebrate.

Halima Aden quits runway modelling over religious views

The 23-year-old American has modelled for Vogue, Fenty Beauty and Kanye West’s Yeezy brand.

Australian 'war crimes': Troops to be fired over Afghan killings

The soldiers are separate to the 19 elite troops who could face prosecution for murdering civilians.

Diego Maradona: Argentina football icon's off-pitch politics

The Argentine legend mingled with some of the best-known and controversial politicians and championed the oppressed.

BBC World News is brought to you by BBC

Coronavirus COVID-19 Global Case Tracker

Provided by Johns Hopkins University this COVID-19 Global Case Tracker Dashboard shows you the most up-to-date information about the global spread of the new corona virus.

About the 2019-20 Coronavirus Pandemic

The 2019-20 coronavirus pandemic is an ongoing pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The outbreak started in Wuhan, Hubei province, China, in December 2019. The World Health Organization (WHO) declared the outbreak to be a Public Health Emergency of International Concern on 30 January 2020 and recognized it as a pandemic on 11 March 2020. As of end March 2020, more than a million cases of COVID-19 have been reported in over 200 countries and territories, resulting in approximately 64,000 deaths. More than 250,000 people have recovered.

The virus is mainly spread during close contact, and by small droplets produced during coughing, sneezing, or talking. These small droplets may also be produced during breathing, but rapidly fall to the ground or surfaces and are not generally spread through the air over large distances. People may also catch COVID-19 by touching a contaminated surface and then their face. The virus can survive on surfaces up to 72 hours. It is most contagious during the first 3 days after symptom onset, although spread may be possible before symptoms appear and in later stages of the disease. The time between exposure and symptom onset is typically around five days, but may range from 2 to 14 days. Common symptoms include fever, cough, and shortness of breath.

The pandemic has led to severe global socioeconomic disruption, the postponement or cancellation of sporting, religious, and cultural events, and widespread fears of supply shortages resulting in panic buying. Schools and universities have closed either on a nationwide or local basis in more than 160 countries, affecting approximately 97 percent of the world's student population.

Source: Wikipedia (April 5, 2020)

Please find below further updates from The World Health Organization (WHO).

WHO releases new guidance on integrating mental health in radiological and nuclear emergency response

The Framework for mental health and psychosocial support in radiological and nuclear emergencies, released today, brings together, for the first time, existing knowledge from the fields of mental health and protection from radiation in an integrated guide for preparedness for and response to nuclear and radiological emergencies.

Every move counts towards better health – says WHO

Up to 5 million deaths a year could be averted if the global population was more active. At a time when many people are home bound due to COVID-19, new WHO Guidelines on physical activity and sedentary behaviour, launched today, emphasize that everyone, of all ages and abilities, can be physically active and that every type of movement counts.

The new guidelines recommend at least 150 to 300 minutes of moderate to vigorous aerobic activity per week for all adults, including people living with chronic conditions or disability, and an average of 60 minutes per day for children and adolescents.

WHO statistics show that one in four adults, and four out of five adolescents, do not get enough physical activity.  Globally this is estimated to cost US$54 billion in direct health care and another US$14 billion to lost productivity.

The guidelines encourage women to maintain regular physical activity throughout pregnancy and post-delivery. They also highlight the valuable health benefits of physical activity for people living with disabilities.

Older adults (aged 65 years or older) are advised to add activities which emphasize balance and coordination, as well as muscle strengthening, to help prevent falls and improve health.

Regular physical activity is key to preventing and helping to manage heart disease, type-2 diabetes, and cancer, as well as reducing symptoms of depression and anxiety, reducing cognitive decline, improving memory and boosting brain health.

“Being physically active is critical for health and well-being – it can help to add years to life and life to years,” said WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. “Every move counts, especially now as we manage the constraints of the COVID-19 pandemic. We must all move every day – safely and creatively.” 

All physical activity is beneficial and can be done as part of work, sport and leisure or transport (walking, wheeling and cycling), but also through dance, play and everyday household tasks, like gardening and cleaning.

“Physical activity of any type, and any duration can improve health and wellbeing, but more is always better,” said Dr Ruediger Krech, Director of Health Promotion, World Health Organization, “and if you must spend a lot of time sitting still, whether at work or school, you should do more physical activity to counter the harmful effects of sedentary behaviour.”

“These new guidelines highlight how important being active is for our hearts, bodies and minds, and how the favourable outcomes benefit everyone, of all ages and abilities”, said Dr Fiona Bull, Head of the Physical Activity Unit which led the development of the new WHO guidelines.

WHO encourages countries to adopt the global guidelines to develop national health policies in support of the WHO Global action plan on physical activity 2018-2030. The plan was agreed by global health leaders at the 71st World Health Assembly in 2018 to reduce physical inactivity by 15% by 2030.