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Business chiefs and MPs are calling for an early end to the lockdown if new coronavirus cases arise

Business leaders and politicians pleaded with the government last night to unlock the economy and get Britain moving after figures showed that the outbreak of Covid-19 was under control.

Experts suggested that the UK’s coronavirus “disappeared,” with fewer deaths and new cases in London below 50 a day.

Official figures on Thursday revealed how deaths, hospitalizations and new infections have fallen significantly since the epidemic peaked in early April.

The R rate – which shows how fast the virus is spreading – would also drop.

Experts suggested the UK's coronavirus 'disappeared', with fewer deaths and new cases in London under 50 a day

Experts suggested the UK’s coronavirus ‘disappeared’, with fewer deaths and new cases in London under 50 a day

Professor Carl Heneghan, director of the Center for Evidence-Based Medicine at Oxford University, said the coronavirus was “disappearing at a faster rate” and urged politicians to “open up businesses” to prevent second wave of deaths from economic collapse. .

Conservative ex-leader Iain Duncan Smith said, “We have to be quick. The threat we are facing now, more serious than the corona virus, is that of a failing economy. ‘

Tory ex-minister John Redwood said, “We will have unemployment on a scale that has not been seen for many years … unless we get people on leave back to work.”

Quarantine for ‘risky’ contacts

British people will have to isolate themselves for 14 days if they come into contact with someone infected with coronavirus under the government’s new ‘test and trace’ scheme, as was revealed last night.

Government tests, Tsar John Newton, told NHS chiefs that ‘high-risk’ contacts from confirmed Covid-19 patients would be asked to quarantine for two weeks, even if they have no symptoms. Professor Newton said, “If there is a good social distance, the number of contacts will be small.”

Government sources confirmed last night that the launch of the ‘test and trace’ scheme has been delayed until next week.

The plan will initially continue without the smartphone app tested on the Isle of Wight – instead, 25,000 trackers will follow the contacts of new cases.

London registered fewer than 100 new cases of coronavirus in the past two weeks, compared to more than 1,000 a day in early April.

Figures from Public Health England last night showed that only 24 people in London tested positive on May 16 and only 51 tested positive on May 15 – the most recent days for which reliable data are available.

The number of deaths in hospitals peaked six weeks ago, and three-quarters of NHS trusts in England have since fallen.

On Thursday, more than half of NHS hospital representatives – 126 out of 218 – reported no new deaths from the coronavirus, and a third spent consecutive days with no new deaths.

This compares to 41 who did not report any new deaths on April 8. Two deaths of patients under 40 have been reported in the past two days. Both had underlying health problems.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock revealed last night that about one in six people in London and one in 20 elsewhere in England have had coronavirus.

An antibody study led by the Office for National Statistics suggests that 17 percent of people in London and about 5 percent in England tested positive for antibodies to coronavirus.

On Friday, the US will publish a new estimate of the R rate, which ministers want to keep below 1 or R1.

But a Whitehall source said it was already much lower than the nominal rate, suggesting ministers have more room to facilitate the shutdown.

The source said the nominal R rate was about 0.75, but government experts said privately that it was over 0.5 in the community.

Conservative ex-leader Iain Duncan Smith said, “We have to be quick. The threat we are facing now, more serious than the corona virus, is that of a failing economy. ‘

On Thursday, MPs warned that the threat of a tank economy now outweighs the risk of coronavirus.

They said that unless the closing of the closure accelerated, the UK would face an unemployment rate that has not been seen since the 1930s.

Business leaders said companies were “completely ready to open,” adding, “Another week closed is another week closer to business failure.”

The figures will contribute to calls to lift the closure in London, which contributes a quarter of UK GDP.

About 1.8 million people across the country have applied for Universal Credit since the closure began, and the government’s leave plan pays 7.5 million.

Downing Street said it was too early to make sure the virus was under control. The Prime Minister’s official spokesperson stressed that “extreme caution” was needed in order not to “risk the public’s sacrifice to suppress the spread of the infection.”

Experts have warned that if the closure continues, more companies will close. Hospitality and retail businesses beg the government to trust that they will reopen with social distance rules.

Kate Nicholls, of the umbrella group UK Hospitality, said: “If we leave it much longer, many companies will not survive and we will see layoffs.

“We are ready to leave on July 4. Parts of the sector … can be finished faster. ‘

Emma McClarkin, of the British Beer & Pub Association, said: “The 27,000 pubs in the UK with beer gardens will be the best places to reopen under social distance conditions and should therefore be among the first to reopen.”

But Downing Street said it was too early to make sure the virus was under control.

The Prime Minister’s official spokesperson stressed that “extreme caution” was needed in order not to “risk the public’s sacrifice to suppress the spread of the infection.”

Screen tea? Cafe culture in corona style

For coffee shop enthusiasts, the ending robbed them of a cherished daily routine.

But a cafe owner believes he has found the perfect solution to have customers return if restrictions are lifted.

Francini Osorio has installed 35 clear shower curtains to keep customers separate from other tables.

Cafe owner Francini Osorio, owner of the Francini Cafe De Colombia in Worcester, has installed 35 clear shower curtains to keep customers separate from other tables

Cafe owner Francini Osorio, owner of the Francini Cafe De Colombia in Worcester, has installed 35 clear shower curtains to keep customers separate from other tables

Cafe owner Francini Osorio, owner of the Francini Cafe De Colombia in Worcester, has installed 35 clear shower curtains to keep customers separate from other tables

He has also placed an air purifier and plans to supply gloves for every table at the Francini Cafe De Colombia in Worcester

He has also placed an air purifier and plans to supply gloves for every table at the Francini Cafe De Colombia in Worcester

He has also placed an air purifier and plans to supply gloves for every table at the Francini Cafe De Colombia in Worcester

He has also placed an air purifier and plans to supply gloves for every table at the Francini Cafe De Colombia in Worcester.

The businessman is now conducting a test to see whether the measures are workable.

Mr. Osorio, who will be wearing a mask and gloves with his baristas, said, “The idea is to keep people together but separated by the curtain.” UK cafes and restaurants are usually limited to a drive-in or takeaway service during lockdown.

Only 0.25 percent of the British are now infected with coronavirus

By Daniel Martin, policy editor of the Daily Mail

Only one in 400 Britons outside hospitals or care homes became infected with coronavirus at some point in the early weeks of May, official reviews show.

A snapshot from the Office for National Statistics found that 137,000 – 0.24 percent of the population – had the virus.

They found that there were no differences in infection rates between different age groups or between men and women.

The studies – conducted between May 4 and May 17 – also suggest that primary NHS or nursing home workers are no more likely to become infected than others.

Only one in 400 Britons outside hospitals or care homes became infected with coronavirus at some point in the early weeks of May, official reviews show. Pictured: The beaches remained busy on Friday, including Southend in Essex

Only one in 400 Britons outside hospitals or care homes became infected with coronavirus at some point in the early weeks of May, official reviews show. Pictured: The beaches remained busy on Friday, including Southend in Essex

Only one in 400 Britons outside hospitals or care homes became infected with coronavirus at some point in the early weeks of May, official reviews show. Pictured: The beaches remained busy on Friday, including Southend in Essex

This is a dramatic reversal of the findings in a similar study conducted by the US in late April and early May, when it was determined that doctors, nurses and caregivers were six times more likely to test positive.

The ONS was unable to explain the shift in infection pattern.

But the change may be related to a greater availability of personal protective equipment for frontline workers.

The report said, “There is no evidence of a difference between the proportions that test positive for patient-centered healthcare or residential social care functions and those who do not work in these roles.”

US studies conducted in the two weeks before May 4, based on nearly 15,000 Pap smears in England, showed that 1.33 percent of NHS and nursing home employees were infected, compared to just 0.22 percent of the others.

A snapshot from the Office for National Statistics found that 137,000 - 0.24 percent of the population - had the virus. Pictured: The Brighton boardwalk was packed with visitors on Thursday

A snapshot from the Office for National Statistics found that 137,000 - 0.24 percent of the population - had the virus. Pictured: The Brighton boardwalk was packed with visitors on Thursday

A snapshot from the Office for National Statistics found that 137,000 – 0.24 percent of the population – had the virus. Pictured: The Brighton boardwalk was packed with visitors on Thursday

The previous survey found that 148,000 were infected at some point in England, but the ONS said “the change is relatively small and it should be interpreted that the number of people living in England with Covid-19 is relatively stable.”

The study found that there were an estimated 61,000 new infections per week in England in the past four weeks, excluding those working in hospitals or care homes.

This is higher than the daily government figures, but the ONS said estimating the level of infection is hugely complicated and the 137,000 snapshot figure can actually reach 208,000 or even 85,000.

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