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Here are five things you need to know about the coronavirus outbreak this Tuesday morning. We’ll have another update for you at 18:00 BST.
Science 1. Green scheme
Hundreds of thousands of homeowners in England will be able to apply for vouchers of up to £5,000 to help cover the cost of installing insulation and other energy saving improvements. It’s part of a plan from Chancellor Rishi Sunak to kick-start a green economic recovery. BBC environment analyst Roger Harrabin says some campaigners are delighted, but plenty think much more money is needed. We’ll hear more from the chancellor on Wednesday when he delivers an emergency mini-Budget. In the meantime, here are five things he might do., including a stamp duty holiday to stimulate the housing market.
Science 2. Care homes anger
Boris Johnson has been strongly criticised for suggesting that “too many care homes didn’t really follow the procedures” during the coronavirus crisis. Downing Street later said he meant to point out that no-one knew what the correct procedures were at that stage, but organisations representing homes and their staff have accused the PM of unfairly blaming them. Many thousands of care home residents have died during the outbreak – BBC Reality Check has looked closely at what steps homes took.
Science 3. Masks call
The president of the UK’s national academy of science has said everyone should have a face covering with them whenever they leave home, and use them when in crowded places. There are mixed feelings among the government’ scientific advisory group, Sage, around the use of face coverings, but there’s a consensus that they may reduce the risk of an infected person passing on the virus. Masks are compulsory in some settings in the UK, of course – here are the rules and some tips on making your own.
Science 4. Pubs shut again
A number of pubs in England have closed after some of the first customers to visit after lockdown was eased subsequently tested positive for coronavirus. At least three establishments – in Somerset, West Yorkshire and Hampshire – are known to be affected. See more on the steps pubs are taking to minimise risks. Pubs in Scotland and Wales are not yet allowing customers indoors – Northern Ireland is at the same stage as England.
Science 5. Missing the grandchildren
The Duchess of Cornwall says she “can’t wait to hug her grandchildren” after only seeing them on internet calls and at a social distance. Speaking to BBC Radio 5 Live’s Emma Barnett, Camilla also talked about her husband Prince Charles’ recovery from Covid-19, and discussed her concerns about another timely issue – the scale of domestic abuse in the UK during lockdown. The duchess is guest-editing Emma’s show from 10:00 BST today. And read more on whether coronavirus is changing the royals.
Science And don’t forget…
Plus, meet some of the Covid-19 “long-haulers” – people who’ve found themselves suffering for far longer than the 14 days officially said to be the average length of the illness.
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