Trump tests positive and MP’s, Trump has ‘mild symptoms’ of COVID-19: Live news, Live Updates: President Trump, first lady test positive for coronavirus, President Trump confirms he has coronavirus
These are the coronavirus morning headlines for Friday, October 2, as President Donald Trump and his wife Melania test positive for coronavirus and an SNP MP faces criticism for travelling on public transport with Covid-19.
SNP MP Margaret Ferrier has admitted that she travelled to Parliament by train after taking a coronavirus test but without waiting for the result.
When she received her result, she took another train back from London to Scotland despite knowing that she had coronavirus at the time.
Her party swiftly suspended her after the disclosure but leaders Nicola Sturgeon and Ian Blackford were facing questions over what they knew and when amid anger at the MPs actions.
Ms Ferrier, the MP for Rutherglen and Hamilton West, apologised and reported herself to police on Thursday.
She said she experienced Covid-19 symptoms on Saturday afternoon but felt better so travelled to the Commons on Monday to take part in a coronavirus debate.
It was that evening, she said, she received her positive test result for the virus and travelled home to Scotland on Tuesday morning.
She was suspended by the SNP when her actions became public, but it emerged that she told the whip on Wednesday afternoon.
Kevin Lindsay, rail union ASLEF’s organiser in Scotland, said: “She put passengers and staff at risk, which is outrageous. For an MP to get on a train knowing she has covid-19 is both dangerous and disgraceful.”
Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross, who resigned from Boris Johnson’s Government over Dominic Cummings’ lockdown movements, said that “the public deserve clear answers” from SNP leader Ms Sturgeon and SNP Westminster leader Mr Blackford.
“We now know that the SNP were informed on Wednesday that Margaret Ferrier had been tested, after she had already travelled back to Scotland from London by public transport while infected with the virus,” Mr Ross said.
“These actions not only broke the law, they will have put lives at risk.”
Donald Trump tests positive for coronavirus
The US President tweeted the news on Friday morning, saying “Flotus (Melania) and I tested positive for COVID-19.
“We will begin our quarantine and recovery process immediately. We will get through this TOGETHER!”
Before announcing the news, two hours earlier Trump had tweeted that his aide Hope Hicks had tested positive for the virus.
The stunning development comes a month before the US election on November 3.
Mr Trump is now expected to be in quarantine for some two weeks while facing treatment for the disease.
The president is 74 years old, putting him at higher risk of serious complications from the virus.
Still, The Associated Press quoted an unidentified White House doctor as saying Mr Trump would continue carrying out his duties ‘without disruption’ despite the diagnosis.
The positive tests for the Trumps come as stark reminders that the coronavirus continues to spread, even as Mr Trump has tried desperately to suggest it no longer poses a danger.
Lone households expected to be allowed to form bubbles
Rirst Minister Mark Drakeford is expected to announce changes to the lockdown rules for single parents and those living on their own at today’s Welsh Government press conference.
It is understood the First Minister will announces the changes during the three-week review of existing restrictions on Friday, October 2.
He is is not, however, expected to make major changes to Wales’ national coronavirus rules, as cases of the virus continue to rise.
Mr Drakeford will announce the changes “in recognition of the emotional toll the virus can have on people living alone”, something the First Minister had previously earmarked for review.
He previously said: “I have asked for us to look at the Scottish household model. In the lockdown areas you can only meet people from your extended household [in Scotland, an extended household can be formed by a person who lives alone or only with children under 18 with another household of any size],” he said at the time.
“In Scotland, if you are a single person living on your own you can form an extended household with one other. I am concerned about those elderly people living on their own who, at the moment, are not able to mix with anybody else indoors.”
A second hospital in the Cwm Taf Morgannwg health board area has been hit with a number of coronavirus cases and had to close a ward.
There are 22 cases at Merthyr Tydfil’s Prince Charles Hospital, as of Wednesday, September 30.
Cwm Taf Morgannwg Health Board said strict infection prevention and control procedures were being followed and there was increased testing at the hospital.
The outbreak at the health board’s Royal Glamorgan Hospital in Llantrisant has now seen 89 people infected and the number of deaths has gone up to 10.
There are a number of temporary restrictions in place to try to control the spread including temporary suspension of elective surgery with the exception of a very small number of urgent cancer cases which have been prioritised, the diversion of emergency admissions to other hospitals with the exception of children, and the diversion of Welsh Ambulance Service patients to other hospitals with the exception of children.
Public Health Wales’ latest infection rates, cases and deaths
Six more people have died in Wales after testing positive for Covid-19, the most reported in a single day since July 2.
Public Health Wales (PHW) also confirmed there were 398 new lab-confirmed positive cases of coronavirus for Thursday, October 1. This is the highest figure so far during the second wave. More cases were only reported once before on April 10.
The number of overall deaths with coronavirus in Wales now stands at 1,622. The last time six deaths or more were reported in a single day by PHW was on July 2.
Blaenau Gwent continues to record the highest rate of infections in Wales with 246.2 positive cases per 100,000 population in the last seven days – down on 274.8 the day before.
Infection rates for Merthyr Tydfil are the second highest at 208.9 cases per 100,000, which was down on 213.8 yesterday, while Rhondda Cynon Taf also remains high at 178.2 cases per 100,000 (a drop on 184 on Wednesday).
The Wales average per 100,000 population is now at 75.7 – up from 73.4 the day before. All the latest rates are here.
Meanwhile, the number of patients being admitted to hospital and intensive care units with Covid-19 is rocketing in Wales.
Latest figures from the Welsh Government show 550 beds were being used by confirmed, suspected or recovering coronavirus cases on Tuesday, September 29.
That was an increase from 343 beds the previous week and equated to 7% of all hospital admissions.
Lockdown extended further in Caerphilly
A letter signed jointly by Caerphilly County Borough Council’s leader, Councillor Philippa Marsden, and chief executive Christina Harrhy, thanks residents in the Welsh town for their “collective efforts” so far, whilst warning them of more to come.
The statement, published today, reads: “There’s light at the end of the tunnel – Let’s keep the great work going!
“We would like to take this opportunity to provide you with an update regarding the latest position of the local restrictions and the impact of our collective efforts. We want to thank you for protecting families, friends and loved ones.
“Your efforts really are making a difference, but we remain at a critical stage and we ask that you keep pushing a little more!
“Following a meeting with the First Minister today, we have agreed that our restrictions will remain in place for at least another seven days.
“We also agreed to develop our exit plan over the next week, working with Welsh Government and partner colleagues, in readiness for our next formal seven day review period.”
New restrictions for parts of north west England
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said there were “early signs” that new restrictions imposed in the past month were beginning to have an impact.
But he announced new restrictions on north-west England, similar to those imposed in the North East earlier this week.
He told MPs that action was needed with there being 268 cases per 100,000 people in Liverpool.
It will be illegal for households to mix indoors there, as well as in Warrington, Hartlepool and Middlesbrough, from Saturday.
Amendments to regulations to bring restrictions in those areas into line with the new North East measures were published on Thursday evening.
In Middlesbrough, independent mayor Andy Preston said: “As things stand we defy the Government and we do not accept these measures.”
But it was later clarified that he will urge people and business to comply with the regulations.
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer called for a “rapid review” of the local lockdown strategy and urged the Government to consider whether the 10pm curfew should remain.
Proposals being considered in Whitehall could see a simpler, three-tiered approach to local restrictions, but these have yet to be finalised.
Mr Hancock defended the 10pm curfew in pubs and restaurants but promised to do “whatever we can” to support the hospitality industry.
Four new countries added to quarantine list
A number of new locations have been added to the government’s list of countries requiring self-isolation in Wales.
From this weekend, travellers coming from Turkey, Poland and Bonaire, Saba and St Eustatius in the Caribbean will have to self-isolate for 14 days as the Welsh Government attempts to curb the latest spike in cases of coronavirus.
The changes were confirmed by health secretary Vaughan Gething on Thursday evening following a review of the current restrictions, and will come into effect from 4am on Saturday, October 3.
The seven-day rate of new coronavirus cases per 100,000 people in Poland is now at 25.9, increasing from 15.6 in the previous week.
Bonaire, St Eustatius and Saba also reported 142.4 new cases per 100,000, unchanged from 142.4 in the previous week.
Turkey’s rate has dropped to 12.9 cases, down from 14.2 in the week prior.
Strictly contestant tests positive
Strictly Come Dancing has suffered its first celebrity COVID-19 blow – with YouTuber HRVY allegedly testing positive for coronavirus.
The internet personality – real name Harvey Cantwell – is said to have contracted the virus, despite being asymptomatic, and has been sent into isolation.
He will have to remain there until October 8, according to sources, which is just four days before the celebrities are partnered up with their pro dancers.
A BBC spokesman confirmed a member of the Strictly Come Dancing group had tested positive.
They added: “We have rigorous protocols in place to manage Covid-19 as the safety of all those involved in the production is paramount.”
It is understood HRVY is still set to take part in the launch show, depending on a negative test result, and that he only came into contact with a handful of production crew.
They all then isolated and got tested and it is believed there was a minimal impact on production.
This year’s Strictly is shorter than usual due to the pandemic. The launch show will air on October 17 while the first live show will be broadcast on October 24, head judge Shirley Ballas said.
Due to the uncertainty caused by the virus, producers are planning for multiple audience scenarios.