Science

Coronavirus live news: Trump falsely claims Covid-19 affects 'virtually' no young people; UK set for new restrictions






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One-third of professional British musicians are considering giving up their careers amid the coronavirus pandemic.

A survey of 2,000 members of the Musicians’ Union found that 34% “are considering abandoning the industry completely”, because of the financial difficulties they face during the pandemic, as performance opportunities are severely curtailed.

Almost half have already found work outside their industry, and 70% are unable to do more than a quarter of their usual work. Eighty-seven per cent of musicians covered by furlough and self-employment support schemes say they will face financial hardship when the schemes are due to end in October:





In the UK, rival groups of scientists are at loggerheads over how government should handle the Covid pandemic, with one advising that only over-65s and the vulnerable should be shielded, while the other backs nationwide measures.

The conflicting advice to the UK government and chief medical officers (CMOs) came in two open letters issued on Monday by the rival camps.

It came as Prof Chris Whitty, England’s CMO, and the chief scientific adviser Sir Patrick Vallance made a national TV broadcast to set out the risk of the virus spreading exponentially, with a corresponding increase in cases and deaths, if public behaviour does not change.

Thirty-two scientists signed one letter warning the government is heading down the wrong road and must reconsider its policy to suppress the virus, adopting a targeted approach instead:





The Lancet changes editorial policy after hydroxychloroquine Covid study retraction

One of the world’s leading medical journals, the Lancet, has reformed its editorial policies following a shocking case of apparent research misconduct involving the study of hydroxychloroquine as a treatment for Covid-19.

In May, the Lancet published a peer-reviewed study about the controversial drug hydroxychloroquine, which concluded Covid-19 patients who received the drug were dying at higher rates and experiencing more heart-related complications than other virus patients.

The large observational study analysed data purported to be from nearly 15,000 patients with Covid-19 who received the drug alone or in combination with antibiotics, comparing this data with 81,000 controls who did not receive the drug.

This data was recorded by hospitals around the world in a database by a US data analytics company known as “Surgisphere”, the Lancet paper said. The findings prompted the World Health Organization to halt its clinical trials of the drug, given the paper’s findings that it was linked with deaths and complications.

But days after the paper was published, Guardian Australia revealed issues with the Australian data in the study. Figures on the number of Covid-19 deaths and patients in hospital cited by the authors did not match up with official government and health department data. Senior clinicians involved in Covid-19 research told Guardian Australia they had never heard of the Surgisphere database:





After rescheduling her wedding three times this year, Nalan Altas was finally supposed to be getting married last weekend. With weddings blamed for an uptick in coronavirus cases across Turkey throughout the summer and tight restrictions now in place limiting celebrations, however, the 36-year-old and her partner threw in the towel.

“I always hoped to have my loved ones and whole family with me on my wedding day but when they said weddings are now only allowed to be one hour we cancelled the whole thing. I am psychologically devastated, and financially it’s hard, too,” she said.

Turkey’s Covid-19 cases have steadily crept up since tough nationwide lockdown restrictions were lifted in July, with the daily number of new cases hitting 1,771 on Friday, the highest rate since mid-May. Doctors and opposition politicians allege that the caseload is actually much higher, accusing the government of a cover-up – a charge Ankara denies:













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