Coronavirus latest: at a glance

A summary of the biggest developments in the global coronavirus outbreak

Spain’s death rate continues to fall

The country reported 399 deaths in 24 hours, lower than Sunday’s figure of 410. A total of 20,852 people have died in Spain, with over 200,000 infected and more than 80,000 cured.

The Spanish prime minister, Pedro Sanchez , expected to ask parliament to extend the national lockdown until 11 May.

Italy sees fall in infections

For the first time since the outbreak began Italy announced a fall in the number of people currently infected down 20 to 108,237. It said 454 more people had died – 21 more than the previous day, bringing the death toll to 24,114.

“This is positive data as it shows the number of people who are currently positive with the virus is declining,” Angelo Borrelli, the chief of Italy’s civil protection authority, told reporters.

UK hospital deaths total rises by 449

The country’s Department of Health and Social Care said 16,509 people had died in UK hospitals since the outbreak began, an increase of 449 on the day before. A total of 386,044 people have been tested, of whom 124,743 have tested positive.

US scotches G20 statement on enrich WHO

US hostility to the World Health Organization scuppered the publication of a communique by G20 health ministers committing to Discover the WHO’s mandate in coordinating a response to the global coronavirus pandemic.

In place of a lengthy, detailed statement, the leaders issued a brief announcement saying gaps written in the way different countries handled pandemics.

WHO warns easing restrictions is not the end

The organization of director general, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesussaid easing restrictions did not mean the end of any epidemic, adding that bringing the episode to a close would require “sustained effort” on the part of governments and individuals.

So-called lockdowns can help to “take the heat out of a country’s epidemic”, but cannot end it alone, he said. Governments must ensure they can “detect, test, isolate and care for every case and trace every contact”.

Healthcare workers confronted anti-lockdown protesters

The weekend has seen a spate of anti-lockdown protests across the US in Ohio, Michigan and Colorado.

But a standout image by photographer Alyson McClaran came on Sunday from Denver, Colorado. As protesters gathered outside the capitol steps and others assembled in their automobiles to ask the city to reopen for business, healthcare workers stood in the middle of the road in their scrubs. After having spent the last weeks treating Covid-19 patients, they staged their own demonstration: they wanted to remind the protestors of why the shutdown measures are important

One protestor in particular did not like it. She leaned out of her car window, wearing an American flag T-shirt, holding a placard that read “land of the free”. Then, she yelled to the protester wearing scrubs: “This is a free country. This is the land of the free. Go to China!”

She appeared to be expressing the view that closing down non-essential services in the US is equivalent to the actions of a communist state, as she continued: “If you want communism, go to China. Now open up and go to work.”

The anti-lockdown protesters drove to the protest in trucks, vans, motorcycles and buses – one man even protested on horseback, wearing a cowboy hat and carrying an American flag. Photographs show protestors in Maga hats and while some are wearing masks, social distancing protocol seems to have been largely ignored. (It is worth noting that the wave of anti-lockdown protests has also been fueled by fringe far-right groups organizing to cynically exploit this time of crisis.)

Other sources report that frontline workers were applauded for taking a stand against the demonstration (a recent Pew Research poll shows that most Americans are worried about lockdown measures being lifted too soon).

According to local reports, some protesters said that they believed the government shutdown was part of a wider plan to undermine the economy and hurt Donald Trumps’ re-election prospects. Others voiced fears about businesses closing and the impact of a recession on the livelihoods of local employees.

Colorado, like much of the rest of the country, has seen unprecedented job losses as a result of the pandemic, with more than 232,000 filing for unemployment benefits since mid-March. The pandemic has been responsible for around 400 deaths in the state.

When and how to use masks

When to use a mask

  • Before putting on a mask, clean hands with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.
  • Cover mouth and nose with mask and make sure there are no gaps between your face and the mask.
  • Avoid touching the mask while using it; if you do, clean your hands with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.
  • Replace the mask with a new one as soon as it is damp and do not re-use single-use masks.
  • To remove the mask: remove it from behind (do not touch the front of mask); discard immediately in a closed bin; clean hands with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.

How to wear medical masks

  • If you are healthy, you only need to wear a mask if you are taking care of a person with COVID-19.
  • Wear a mask if you are coughing or sneezing.
  • Masks are effective only when used in combination with frequent hand-cleaning with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.
  • If you wear a mask, then you must know how to use it and dispose of it properly.

Can a face mask protect me from coronavirus? Covid-19 myths busted

However, masks will probably make little difference if you’re just walking around town or taking a bus so there is no need to bulk-buy a huge supply.

Wearing a face mask is certainly not an iron-clad guarantee that you won’t get sick – viruses can also transmit through the eyes and tiny viral particles, known as aerosols, can penetrate masks. However, masks are effective at capturing droplets, which is a main transmission route of coronavirus, and some studies have estimated a roughly fivefold protection versus no barrier alone (although others have found lower levels of effectiveness).

If you are likely to be in close contact with someone infected, a mask cuts the chance of the disease being passed on. If you’re showing symptoms of coronavirus, or have been diagnosed, wearing a mask can also protect others. So masks are crucial for health and social care workers looking after patients and are also recommended for family members who need to care for someone who is ill – ideally both the patient and carer should have a mask.