Follow the latest updates
Holiday destinations such Malta and the Canary Islands could be moved to the UK’s green travel list tomorrow, according to a travel expert.
Paul Charles, chief executive of the PC Agency travel consultancy, is predicting Finland, Jamaica, the Balearics, Barbados, Morocco and Grenada could all also be upgraded from the amber category when the government reviews its traffic light system on Thursday.
It comes as the UK reported zero new daily coronavirus deaths for the first time in eight months, fuelling hopes of remaining lockdown restrictions being lifted on 21 June.
Tuesday marked the first time no fatalities within 28 days of testing positive for Covid-19 were reported since 30 July last year.
The UK is also on the brink of reaching the milestone of three-quarters of adults receiving their first Covid-19 vaccine.
Latest government data suggests that so far, more than 39.4 million people have received their first dose – equating to 74.9 per cent of adults.
Scottish Tory leader forced to self-isolate after contact with Covid case
Scottish Tory leader Douglas Ross has announced he will self isolate as a result of coming into contact with someone who has tested positive for Covid-19.
Mr Ross was told by text this morning that a person he had been in contact with had tested positive with the virus, by which time he was already in the Scottish parliament building.
He has not, as yet, been contacted by Test and Protect – Scotland’s contact tracing system.
He has returned to the Edinburgh hotel in which he was staying and the party has said he will get a test as soon as possible.
How significant is UK recording zero daily Covid deaths?
The UK recorded zero daily Covid deaths for the first time since last summer on Tuesday.
My colleague Tom Batchelor takes a look at how significant that milestone is in the article below:
Cases continues to rise but on Tuesday no deaths within 28 days of someone testing positive for Covid were reported for first time since last July
Majorca and Canaries ‘should be moved from amber travel list’ in government review
European holiday destinations such as Majorca, Ibiza, Tenerife and Malta should be moved to the UK’s green travel list, according to new analysis.
Paul Charles, chief executive of the PC Agency travel consultancy, is predicting the Canary Islands, Finland, Jamaica, the Balearics, Barbados, Malta, Morocco and Grenada will all be upgraded from the amber category when the government reviews its traffic light system tomorrow.
Help vaccinate world or variants will come back to ‘bite us’, says expert
An expert has warned the UK could be “slammed” by new coronavirus variants unless more is done to help poorer nations vaccinate their populations.
Although vaccines have been effective against the Delta variant first identified in India, protection against future variants is “not guaranteed forever”, Professor Sir John Bell said.
As the disease rages in other parts of the world, new variants could emerge which will come back to “bite us”, the regius professor of medicine at Oxford University warned.
Scotland Covid restrictions could ease at different speeds because of third wave, says health secretary
Parts of Scotland that have been kept under Level 2 Covid restrictions could have these removed at “different speeds” the country’s health secretary has said, as he warned Scotland could be at the start of a third wave of the virus.
Humza Yousaf said the government was still “very concerned” about the risk of “overwhelming the NHS” if coronavirus cases surge again.
His comments came after first minister Nicola Sturgeon announced a planned easing of coronavirus restrictions would not take place in many areas.
UK Covid deaths at lowest rate since September
The proportion of deaths involving coronavirus in England and Wales is at its lowest level for more than eight months, figures show.
There were 9,860 deaths from all causes registered in the week ending 21 May, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
Of these, 1.1 per cent (107 deaths) had “novel coronavirus” mentioned on the death certificate.
The last time the proportion was so low was in the week ending 11 September, when the virus accounted for 1 per cent of deaths.
At the peak of the second wave, in the week ending January 29, Covid-19 accounted for 45.7 per cent of registered deaths.
The latest figure is the lowest number of deaths involving coronavirus since the week ending 11 September, and a fall of 29 per cent from the previous week.
Covid mentioned on 153,229 UK death certificates
A total of 153,229 deaths have now occurred in the UK where Covid-19 was mentioned on the death certificate, according to ONS.
The highest number of deaths to occur on a single day was 1,477 on January 19.
During the first wave of the virus, the daily death toll peaked at 1,461 deaths on April 8 2020.
Care home Covid deaths fall
Some 25 care home resident deaths involving Covid-19 in England and Wales were registered in the week to 21 May, down 17 per cent on the previous week.
In total, 42,486 care home residents in England and Wales have had Covid-19 recorded on their death certificate since the pandemic began.
The ONS figures cover deaths of care home residents in all settings, not just in care homes.
Latest Covid death statistics for England
A total of 107 deaths registered in England and Wales in the week ending 21 May mentioned Covid-19 on the death certificate, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS) – the lowest number since the week ending 11 September 2020.
The figure is down 29 per cent on the previous week.
Around one in 91 (1.1 per cent) deaths registered in the week to 21 May mentioned Covid-19 on the death certificate.
State extends Melbourne lockdown to curb outbreak
A snap lockdown in Melbourne has been extended for another week as part of efforts to curb an outbreak of the highly contagious Covid-19 variant first detected in India.
The Australian city’s residents face another seven days of only being allowed to leave home for essential reasons, which includes getting a coronavirus vaccine, authorities have confirmed.
My colleague Zoe Tidman has more details:
‘If we let this thing run its course, it will explode,’ Victoria state’s acting premier says