One in 10 workers tipped to be jobless at peak of crisis

More than one in 10 workers may be without a job at the peak of the economic contraction due to the coronavirus pandemic, which 15 top economists on average predict will push the budget to a record $140 billion deficit next financial year.

The most pessimistic forecast was for the deficit to blow out to $300 billion in 2020-21 and 20 per cent unemployment.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Treasurer Josh Frydenberg have introduced major stimulus packages to help limit the economic impacts of coronavirus.Credit:Alex Ellinghausen

The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age surveyed the economists for a special edition of the biannual Scope survey focused on how the virus and measures to slow the spread will affect jobs, economic growth and government spending.

The panel on average expects the budget to fall into deficit by $87 billion in 2019-20 and $140 billion the following year.

The worst budget deficit since modern records started 50 years ago was the 2009-10 shortfall of $54.5 billion, or 4.2 per cent of GDP. A $140 billion deficit would be about 8 per cent of GDP.

University of Kingston's Steve Keen expects by 2020-21 the deficit could be $300 billion, while Westpac's Bill Evans and AMP Capital chief economist Shane Oliver predict deficits of $210 billion and $200 billion respectively.

Industry Super's Stephen Anthony had the best-case scenario at $55 billion for next financial year, closely followed by University of Melbourne's Neville Norman and Victoria University's Janine Dixon, who tipped $60 billion.

GDP is tipped to be flat or to contract by up to 2.5 per cent in the March quarter. In the June quarter, the best result forecast was for the economy to shrink by 2.8 per cent but Dr Keen expects a 15 per cent contraction. That would be the worst quarterly result on record.

All of the economists are predicting a sharp increase in joblessness, with an average forecast of 11.5 per cent at the peak. The best-case scenario of a 7.8 per cent unemployment rate was forecast by Commonwealth Bank's Gareth Aird for the end of June. ANZ's David Plank made his prediction before the introduction of the JobKeeper package and expected a 13 per cent unemployment rate by the end of the financial year.

At the peak of unemployment, Dr Keen is tipping 20 per cent of people could be without work, which was the worst-case scenario out of the panel. Monash University's Jakob Madsen estimated a 17 per cent rate.

Mr Anthony was again the most optimistic, expecting 8.5 per cent at the peak, closely followed by HSBC's Paul Bloxham at 8.6 per cent.

The majority of the panel said the federal government's $130 billion JobKeeper scheme, which offers a wage subsidy to keep staff on-board at struggling businesses, would help kerb the damage to jobs.

Independent economist Saul Eslake, who expects an 8.2 per cent unemployment rate by June and a peak of 10.75 per cent, said before JobKeeper was announced he was forecasting 1.2 million to 1.5 million workers could lose work.

If this were the case and all those workers counted as actively looking for work, the jobless rate could have risen up to 15 per cent.

"After thinking about the government's wage subsidy scheme, I've cut my guesstimate of the number of job losses to about 765,000," he said.

Dr Norman said predictions made about the economy for 2020 had been "radically shattered" by the pandemic and forecasts were heavily dependent on the length of the shutdown and spread of infections.

"By June or July 2020, we should have some fiscal deficit numbers published that will terrify a majority of people hooked on classical or monetarist economics," Dr Norman said. "Roll on another year and then an even bigger fiscal effect, in my assessment, will arise from the erosion of tax revenues collected … from persons and businesses."

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The Beckhams lead stars in nationwide applause for NHS

The Beckhams and Gordon Ramsay and wife Tana lead the stars in the nationwide applause for the NHS and key workers for the second week in a row during coronavirus pandemic

  • Many across the country joined in for the Clap For Carers campaign at 8pm on Thursday to celebrate workers 
  • A slew of stars including the Beckhams, Ant and Dec and the Ramsay’s took to social media to document the moment 
  • The campaign was launched online in order to show those working in the NHS how grateful Britons are Follows similar moves in Italy and Spain
  • ITV paused programming in order to encourage people to open their windows and doors and clap for the NHS 

The Beckhams and the Ramsays led the stars in the nationwide 8pm applause for the NHS and key workers on Thursday night. 

For the second week in a row, Britons flocked to their doorways, balconies, gardens and windows to give a heartwarming round of applause for the NHS. 

Victoria, 45, took to Instagram to share a video of husband David, sons Romeo, 17, and Cruz, 15, and their daughter Harper, eight, clapping outside their home. 

Clap for carers: The Beckhams and the Ramsay’s led the stars in the nationwide 8pm applause for the NHS and key workers on Thursday night

She wrote atop of the video: ‘In isolation, someone has to be cameraman. Thank you as every week to our NHS and all the frontline workers continuing to fight for all of us. We are so grateful xx’. 

David, 44, reposted the own video alongside his own words of gratitude. ‘Showing our support for the amazing key workers’, he penned. 

The Beckhams’ best pals Gordon and Tana also shared the sentiments. The chef, 53, said in a video: ‘A big thank you to all the NHS staff and all the essential workers, you’re doing an amazing job. Stay safe and thank you,’ before the pair broke into applause.

Thank you! The Beckhams’ best pals Gordon and Tana also shared the sentiments. The chef, 53, said in a video: ‘A big thank you to all the NHS staff and all the essential workers’

Applause: Victoria, 45, took to Instagram to share a video of husband David, sons Romeo, 17, and Cruz, 15, and their daughter Harper, eight, clapping outside their home

Stay safe: Gordon continued: ‘you’re doing an amazing job. Stay safe and thank you,’ before the pair broke into applause

Saturday’s singer Frankie Bridge, 31, took to Instagram before the touching moment as she told fans: ‘I love that the NHS is becoming a weekly thing. It’s lovely for all our doctor and nurses. But it’s also quite nice for everyone to just go “it’s another week done guys”.

‘We’re getting closer and closer to the end. It is nice for us to recognise that otherwise no-one knows what day of the week it is.

‘We could hear our neighbours this week, we couldn’t last but I think that’s because we were too noisy. Keep it up.’

Stacey Solomon, meanwhile, shared a video of her son Leighton, seven, standing at the doorstop clapping. 

‘Thanks health heroes’: Saturday’s singer Frankie Bridge, 31, took to Instagram before the touching moment as she told fans: ‘I love that the NHS is becoming a weekly thing

Grateful: Stacey Solomon, meanwhile, shared a video of her son Leighton, seven, standing at the doorstop clapping

Applause: The presenter, 30, wrote atop of the clip: ‘We are so grateful for ALL of our key workers and all that you’re doing for us to keep us safe’ pictured with sons Rex and Zachary)

The Loose Women presenter, 30, wrote atop of the clip: ‘We are so grateful for ALL of our key workers and all that you’re doing for us to keep us safe and get us through this… THANK YOU’.

Other stars joining in on the applause included Misse Beqiri and Jake Hall clapping with their daughter River, Lisa Snowdon cheering from the street and Love Island’s Samira Mighty.   

ITV’s Ant McPartlin and Declan Donnelly and Rylan Clark-Neal tweeted clapping emojis as the clock struck 8pm, while Jodie Marsh shared a video of herself applauding in the front garden. 

The former glamour model, 41, wrote: ‘We don’t have many neighbours as we live in the deep dark countryside but we could hear some pots and pans banging!!! So lovely!!!!!’

Adorable: Other stars joining in on the applause included Misse Beqiri and Jake Hall clapping with their daughter River

Uplifting: Lisa Snowdon cheered from the street and wrote: ‘Clapping, cheering, crying, fireworks and car horns. Thank you!’ 


Clap for our carers: Made In Chelsea’s Rosie Fortescue and Love Island’s Samira Mighty also uploaded snaps to their social media of the 8pm applause 

Admiration: Ant and Dec led the stars on Twitter  commending the NHS and key workers for their efforts 

Former I’m A Celebrity star Iain Lee, 46, typed: ‘Blimey. That applause outside your front door. I mean. In an old cynic. But. Blimey. I’m in pieces but I’m pretending it’s because I’ve got a leak in the kitchen to not worry the boys.’

Former X Factor star Christopher Maloney said: ‘Again, very emotional’. 

Meanwhile, ITV paused its programming so the nation could join in on the Clap for our Carers. 

Ahead of The Martin Lewis Money Show, ITV switched off the channel and encouraged members of the public to stand on their doorsteps and balconies to applaud key health care workers.

Powerful message: Prime Minister Boris Johnson opened the doors at Number 11 and also stood outside to clap for key workers across the UK

While the nation comes together in a display of gratitude, ITV’s regular programming will be replaced by idents specially created by ITV Creative, asking viewers to donate to NHS Charities Together (www.nhscharitiestogether.co.uk).  

People up and down the country joined in for the Clap For Carers campaign at 8pm, with many seen cheering and voicing their gratitude for the workers who have been dealing with the coronavirus fight.

The Clap For Carers campaign, which started online, has been staged because ‘during these unprecedented times they need to know we are grateful’, the organisers said.

It follows similar moves in Italy and Spain – which have the world’s highest death tolls – which created astonishing scenes over the last month as they applauded from terraces in the countries’ cities.

Chief nursing officer of the NHS Ruth May said she appreciated the national salute planned to honour NHS workers.  

Last Thursday,  Daniel Craig and his wife Rachel Weisz and the Beckham family joined a slew of stars in the first nationwide applause in honour of NHS workers.

Rachel and Daniel appeared in a applause video posted to the official James Bond social media account, along with Rory Kinnear, Ben Whishaw and Naomie Harris. 

Victoria Beckham also shared a video of husband David leading the applause along with their sons Romeo, 17, and Cruz, 15, and their daughter Harper, eight.

Also among the stars was Katie Price, who posted a video alongside her oldest son Harvey, thanking the NHS for their help and still taking care of her son during the epidemic. 

Meanwhile Amanda Holden took to her doorstep with daughters Lexi, 14, and Hollie, eight and Stacey proudly applauded from her front window.  

To donate to NHS Charities Together Covid 19 campaign go to virg.in/ClapForOurCarers 

Together: People applauded  from flats in Riverlight Quay during the Clap for our Carers campaign in support of the NHS

 

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Labour in repossession warning over help for poorest home-owners

Labour warns Rishi Sunak of a ‘wave of post-pandemic repossessions’ if he does not increase help for struggling low-paid homeowners on top of the three-month mortgage holiday during the coronavirus lockdown

  • Shadow housing secretary John Healey said the holiday needed to be added to
  • He wants  further help via the Support for Mortgage Interest (SMI) scheme 
  • Opposition fears that the lingering effect on jobs will continue for many months

Rishi Sunak was warned today that struggling home-owners could face a ‘wave of post-pandemic repossessions’ if he does not increase state help to get through to coronavirus pandemic.

Labour’s shadow housing secretary John Healey warned that the three-month mortgage holiday announced by the Chancellor last month may not go far enough if the social lockdown continues  into the summer.

The opposition fears that the lingering effect on jobs, with workers being forced to take pay cuts or time off, or being made redundant, will continue for many months to come. 

He today called for ministers to provide further help via the Support for Mortgage Interest (SMI) scheme, which was widely used during the global financial crisis more than a decade ago.

‘Home-owners need support to stay in their homes during this period, so restoring the Support for Mortgage Interest safety net will give vital extra help now as home-owners struggle with mortgage payments,’ Mr Healey said.

The opposition fears that the lingering effect on jobs, with workers being forced to take pay cuts or time off, or being made redundant, will continue for many months to come

‘Home-owners need support to stay in their homes during this period,’ Mr Healey said today

 ‘It will also help ensure those hit during the crisis don’t lose their homes as the pandemic passes and any payments holiday ends.

‘We have to look to the period beyond the pandemic when many hard-pressed home-owners will have lost their jobs or had their incomes slashed, and the current one-off mortgage holiday won’t prevent a wave of post-pandemic repossessions.’ 

Analysis of official figures by Labour suggests a third of home-owning households have no savings to fall back on. 

Mr Healey accused the Tories of making changes to the SMI scheme in 2015, increasing the ‘waiting period’ to 39 weeks from 13 weeks, and changing the payment to an interest-bearing loan.

Mr Sunak last month unveiled unprecedented help for families as he said anyone in ‘difficulty’ because of the virus will be able to get a three month reprieve from payments on their homes. 

Mortgage lenders have agreed with the Treasury that any customers who are in ‘difficulty’ due to coronavirus will be eligible for a three month payment ‘holiday’. 

The Treasury’s coronavirus guidance said eligibility will apply to anyone ‘experiencing issues with their finances as a result of Covid-19’. 

Spain, France and Italy are all introducing temporary moratoriums on mortgage payments for citizens affected by the disease.   

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Wayne Bridge has fans in hysterics as he wears wife Frankie’s clothes, wig and lipstick for Flip The Switch challenge – The Sun

WAYNE Bridge shocked and amused fans as he and wife Frankie Bridge took part in TikTok challenge Flip The Switch.

The former footballer and his pop star wife have been entertaining themselves with the app's dance challenges during the lockdown – and fans have gone wild.

The Saturday's singer Frankie had already shown off her moves in a solo dance video earlier in the week – and managed to get her partner to join in the next popular challenge.

Frankie began in a low cut green shirt dress as she gyrated sexily for the camera, with Wayne in the background filming in a hoodie and orange beanie hat.

Cue the switch, and the ex footie star could be seen working his hips in what looked like his wife's slinky dress and red lipstick.

While Frankie is in the background wearing his clothes and filming her dress-wearing hubbie.

Posting the video on her Instagram page, she joked: "B**** stole my look … who wore it best?"


Other celebs including A-listers Jennifer Lopez and Alex Rodriguez have swapped clothes hilarious clips.

While Towie stars Amy Childs and Harry Derbridge have also been busy exchanging her raunchy outfit of black lingerie, stockings and suspenders.

Frankie's post went down a storm with fans and comments from celeb friends including Laura Whitmore who replied with the crying/laughing emoji.

Wayne wrote beside the video he shared: "This happened and it’s probably the only night I’ve not had a beer since isolation…"

He tagged ex footballer buddy Jamie Redknapp and comedian Romesh Ranganathan daring them to take part in the challenge.



Fellow sports star Jamie Redknapp cheekily commented: "I love this Bridgey. It's cool but kind of scary.

"I will ask one of my dogs if they're up for it," referring to his pets, not any of love interests.

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Man, 30s, stabbed to death in East London as suspect arrested on suspicion of murder – The Sun

A MAN in his 30's was stabbed to death last night in East London – as a suspect is quizzed by cops today.

The young man died after being found by police seriously injured in Walthamstow just before 11pm.

Medics raced to the scene in Alexandra Road but the victim died shortly afterwards.

He hasn't been identified yet and is thought to be in his 30's.

Cops are working to name the man and tell his next of kin.

A man in his 20's was arrested on suspicion of murder and taken into police custody.

The investigation is being led by detectives from the Met’s Specialist Crime Command.

Any witnesses, or anyone with information that may assist the investigation, should call police via 101, or the incident room on 020 8345 3775, quoting reference CAD6988/31MAR.

Alternatively contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

A Metropolitan Police statement added: "Do you know about someone who is carrying a knife or you suspect is involved in crime?

"If you have information that could help keep your community safe, but don’t want to speak to police, please contact the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

"They do not ask your name and cannot trace your call or I.P address.

"Any young people who have information about violence or knife crime, can visit www.fearless.org where they can pass on information anonymously."


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Coronavirus in cars: How to clean properly to prevent spread

Coronavirus package could delay car, mortgage payments for Americans

Lawmakers are reportedly very close to approving a coronavirus stimulus package. FOX Business’ Hillary Vaughn with more.

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The spread of the novel coronavirus, and its associated COVID-19 disease, is made worse because it is highly contagious. Since vehicle interiors are essentially small contained spaces, it is important to take steps to reduce the risk of contracting the virus while driving or riding inside.

When it comes to vehicles, washing your hands thoroughly is one of the most effective ways to prevent transmission of the virus, which is spread from small droplets from the nose or mouth when an infected person coughs, sneezes or exhales.

But proper cleaning and disinfecting are also advised. That's because the virus can exist on a variety of surfaces, sometimes even days after contagious droplets we­­re planted there. The experts at Edmunds recommend these tips to increase your safety during the outbreak.

RURAL AREAS FEAR SPREAD OF CORONAVIRUS AS MORE HOSPITALS CLOSE

BE PREPARED

While it's important that the inside of your vehicle is clean, it's just as important that your hands are free of germs too. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends washing your hands for at least 20 seconds before or after eating, using the restroom, coughing or sneezing, caring for others, and leaving your house.

Cleaning your vehicle should also be on the list. It may also be a good idea to use disposable or designated gloves while cleaning to prevent the spread of the coronavirus inside.

Limiting your trips outside is the most effective method of ensuring you won't contract the coronavirus or spread it to others. Restrict your movement to essential tasks only. This will reduce the spread of germs into your vehicle and prevent you from carrying them to the outside world or back inside your home.

BILL GATES: FIGHT CORONAVIRUS WITH THREE STEPS

USE THE RIGHT TOOLS

The right disinfectants can kill the coronavirus so that it doesn't live on surfaces such as rubber, plastic, aluminum and leather. Most common household cleaners will work. The American Chemistry Council has a helpful list of specific EPA-approved products for use against the coronavirus. We recommend keeping a tube of disinfectant wipes in your vehicle for regular use.

Check to ensure that the cleaners you're using are safe for the surfaces in your car. Some disinfectants can dry out leather. A safer option would be to use a mild soap and water, then apply a leather conditioner to protect those surfaces. This option will not kill germs as well as harsher disinfectants, but it will greatly reduce them and help prevent spread.

HOME DEPOT HALTS CORONAVIRUS N95 MASK SALESFOCUS ON TOUCHPOINTS

The main areas that need to be cleaned are obvious. Anything inside the car that your fingers touch should be cleaned: the steering wheel, gear shifter, lane change and windshield wiper stalks, door handles, radio knobs, infotainment controllers, storage bins and seat belts. The CDC recommends cleaning touched surfaces daily.

One other area might not be so immediately evident: The top of the dashboard is a prime spot for harboring such microorganisms, according to Charles P. Gerba, a professor of microbiology and public health at the University of Arizona. Recirculating air swirls up against the windshield and sticks to the dash, where it can be distributed throughout the cabin, Gerba said. Cleaning that spot reduces risk.

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CHILDREN AND THE ELDERLY

People who are regularly in contact with both children and the elderly should take extra precautions, even if those two groups are not sharing the same airspace at the same time. That's because children are often less careful about hygiene and cleanliness, while the elderly are more susceptible to any germs left behind.

People over the age of 60 and those with underlying conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, chronic respiratory disease and cancer have the highest risk of severe disease and death from COVID-19, according to the World Health Organization. But proper and regular cleaning inside the car can greatly reduce the risk of passing the virus on from children and others.

EDMUNDS SAYS: Maintaining cleanliness in your car is a small act that can go a long way toward the greater good. If you are going to take trips outside, do everything you can to slow or prevent the transmission of the coronavirus. Disinfecting your steering wheel over and over again might seem tedious and unnecessary, but it is likely to save lives.

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Spy agencies ‘locked in fierce battle to buy ventilators at all costs’ in global race to fight coronavirus pandemic – The Sun

SPY agencies worldwide are battling to obtain ventilators and other key medical supplies in an at all costs race to fight the coronavirus pandemic, Israeli intelligence have claimed.

Mossad sources alleged that intelligence services are turning their focus from national security towards getting their hands on medical equipment in a secret war against Covid-19.

⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates

Israeli TV station Channel 12 ran a feature revealing this alleged covert battle as part of its investigative news program.

Senior sources within the Israeli intelligence services have described an ongoing fierce and secretive race to control limited medical supplies, reports Times of Israel.

Mossad have previously openly declared their involvement in procuring medical supplies for Israel, including announcing they had obtained 500,000 testing kits last month.

However, they have declined to confirm the source of these key supplies.

Other global spy agencies have not made such announcements about their involvement – if any – in battling Covid-19.

The report gave a dramatic account of these secret operations – including suggestions that nations are snatching supplies from beneath other rivals' noses.

It was claimed Mossad believes the world’s nations are now “looking after themselves” and getting medical equipment is about “finding the cracks” to obtain what you need as quickly as possible.

Reports have previously claimed covert operations have been carried out by nations including China and North Korea in obtaining medical supplies.

No evidence yet suggests that Western powers such as Britain and the United States are involved in such dealings – but the Mossad source did name one power in the fight as “European”.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) have warned however of spiralling prices and a potential global shortage of medical supplies due to stockpiling and limited production.

A Mossad officer, named only as Het, reportedly claimed the Israeli government has ordered them to covertly obtain masks, virus testing kits, medicine, protective gear and, most importantly, ventilators.

Ventilators are key in keeping the most ill coronavirus patients alive as the infection damages their lungs, making it harder to breath.

Speaking on the program, he claimed: “The world is selling [ventilators] through cracks. We need to find the cracks.

“We are world champions in operations, and we know how to manage complex operations.

“We are utilizing our special connections to win the race and perhaps do what the whole world is doing — lay our hands on stocks ordered by others.”

'THE WORLD HAS CLOSED DOWN'

Het described it as the most complex operation he has been part of during his career with Mossad.

The spy agency claimed it was receiving 2,000 leads a day on where to procure the supplies.

Israel has more than 5,500 confirmed cases of coronavirus, and so far reported 21 deaths.

Het claimed Mossad have managed to obtain supplies such as 25,000 N95 respiratory masks, 10 million surgical masks and 700 overall for ambulance works.

And he claimed they had also managed to get their hands on hundreds of ventilators.

Het said: “We had a country in Europe where our trucks arrived at the factory’s doors but another European country was ahead of us and loaded it up.

“We also had a situation where we had equipment we purchased on a plane but it had to be unloaded because the plane didn’t get permission [to take off] due to the embargo.

“The whole world is looking after itself.

“Prices have risen four- and five-fold and the world has closed down.”

Het added however Mossad is confident it will be able to get its hand on 7,000 ventilators.

Israeli officials have so far declined to comment on what countries have been providing them with medical supplies.

It has been reported the equipment has come from countries without diplomatic relations with Israel in the Persian Gulf.

The world continues to fight on through the coronavirus pandemic, with global cases nearing 900,000 and the total death toll now over 43,000.

Other reports have previously emerged of nations covertly attempting to get their hands on medical supplies.

China is alleged to have quietly bulk-bought three million masks, 700,000 hazmat suits and 500,00 pairs of protective gloves through a government-backed firm in February.

The firm allegedly tasked their entire workforce to scour the world for medical supplies to be purchased and sent to China, reported the Sydney Morning Herald.

It has also been reported North Korea have secretly been attempting to acquire testing kits as the rogue still has not confirmed a case of coronavirus.

Last week, Isareli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced that the Mossad would take over the purchase of medical equipment from other countries.

Mossad director Yossi Cohen reportedly heads a special command center along with other security chiefs and the Health Ministry.

The agency has also reportedly obtained information on the mass production of ventilators.

WHO chiefs have previously called for a 40 per cent boost in manufacturing to help meet the world’s medical needs during the coronavirus pandemic.

In a dire assessment of the global supply last month, they blamed “rising demand, panic buying, hoarding and misuse” for a lack of resources.

The organisation warned lives are being put at risk as medical supplies are improperly stockpiled – leaving some frontline workers “dangerously ill-equipped”.

WHO director general Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said: “Without secure supply chains, the risk to healthcare workers around the world is real.

"Industry and governments must act quickly to boost supply, ease export restrictions and put measures in place to stop speculation and hoarding.

“We can’t stop COVID-19 without protecting health workers first."

The leading medics warning of widespread market manipulation leading to spiraling costs and supplies dwindle.

British doctors have also reported shortages of equipment, with some NHS staff being forced to buy their own aprons and treat patients without wearing masks.

The alleged supply shortage of vital protective equipment is said to be placing hospital staff under increased stress as the nation's nurses battle to care for sick patients.

One doctor, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told The Sun: "I’ve never seen people afraid like this.
"We do not have enough protective equipment, and consultants are buying their own masks from Screwfix and Wickes, but even they have now run out of stock."
It comes as NHS doctors are being forced to shave their beards to protect themselves from coronavirus.

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Coronavirus in NY: City has fewer than 400 free intensive care beds

The Big Apple’s drastic effort to build new intensive care units in city hospitals is struggling to keep up with the wave of cases from the coronavirus pandemic, The Post has learned.

New York City’s 2,449 ICU beds were 84 percent full on Monday, leaving 392 beds open for New Yorkers critically ill with COVID-19 or any other ailment, according to tallies obtained from the state Department of Health.

The Monday count by state officials does not include the USNS Comfort hospital ship or the emergency hospital at the Javits Convention Center because neither facility was accepting patients at that time.

Mayor de Blasio has frequently claimed the city, state and federal officials are quickly converting the city’s traditional hospital beds into intensive care wards but has repeatedly refused to provide any data to support the claims.

These tallies from the state DOH provide the first numerical assessment of that progress, showing the city has managed to add 1,000 new intensive care beds since the outbreak.

There were just 1,442 ICU beds across the five boroughs before pandemic struck, according to state DOH data published in January.

Hizzoner said Tuesday that battling the coronavirus may require converting all of New York City’s 20,000 hospital beds into intensive care units.

“We project that potentially all of those beds, all 20,000, will have to be turned into intensive care beds to focus on COVID-19 patients who are really, really sick,” de Blasio told NBC’s “Today” show Tuesday morning.

New York’s intensive care units are the central battlefield in the fight to save lives from COVID-19.

While officials say that 80 percent of cases result in mild symptoms, it is a harrowing ordeal for the less lucky — particularly the elderly, those with compromised immune systems or other underlying conditions like lung disease.

The vicious coronavirus can remain asymptomatic for days before it attacks the respiratory systems of patients, eventually leaving many dependent on ventilators as they struggle to survive.

Those who eventually recover are often forced to spend weeks in intensive care, far longer than the usual three or four-day stay, putting additional pressure on hospitals desperate to find additional beds.

City Hall claimed that the state’s figures were “inaccurate,” but admitted its own count showed that 80 percent of intensive care beds were filled — and continued to refuse to provide any of the underlying statistics like its tally of ICU units across the figure boroughs.

“As the Mayor has said repeatedly, this number is fluid and subject to change,” said spokeswoman Avery Cohen. “We are working as quickly as possible to convert beds into ICU beds wherever we can.”

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Coronavirus in sport LIVE: Ronaldo called ‘tramp’ after walk, National League suspended indefinitely, UFC 249 latest – The Sun


JACK GREALISH crashed his £80,000 Range Rover – despite the country being in lockdown and having told fans just hours ago to "stay inside to save lives".

Billy Joe Saunders has been banned after a video emerged of him 'showing men how to beat women' during isolation, while upcoming bout Dillian Whyte vs Alexander Povetkin has been pushed to June.

Elsewhere, Serie A could cancel their season today due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and Lionel Messi has announced Barcelona's stars are taking a 70 per cent pay cut.

Follow all the latest news and updates as the sporting world deals with the threat of coronavirus…

  • WHEN THE LEVY BREAKS

    Jose Mourinho and his Tottenham stars face a pay cut after Daniel Levy warned they will “have to do their bit” in the current coronavirus crisis.

    Spurs have become the second Premier League club after Newcastle to slash wages for non-playing staff.

    A total of 550 people have seen their salaries cut for two months.

    And some have been placed on furlough, which will allow them to claim 80 per cent of their wages from the government up to a monthly maximum of £2,500.

    But with some of world football’s top clubs also cutting back on player wages, Spurs chief Levy has warned the likes of Mourinho, Harry Kane and the rest of the players are next in line.

  • RUN FOR COVER

    English football faces another obstacle in its bid to finish the season with players’ insurance policies.

    MailOnline reports that “players face being uninsured if their careers are ended because of the coronavirus”.

    It is reported that a number of stars have already queried how the virus could affect their policies.

    And some have been told that “they would not be covered if infection leads to them having to end their careers prematurely” because “the coronavirus is not listed as a critical illness”.

    But insurance companies would have to pay out if the virus led to another illness that IS recognised as ‘critical’.

  • IN GOOD KOMPANY

    Vincent Kompany has offered to pay for his Anderlecht players if they refuse to give up their wages amidst the coronavirus pandemic.

    The Belgian player-manager, 33, has generously given his players a financial lift, with football clubs across the world left reeling at the financial repercussions of the killer bug.

    Anderlecht have asked their players to take a pay cut – losing one month’s worth of wages.

    But Kompany is offering to bail them out if they are unable to do so, according to reports in Belgium.

  • ASH WORRY

    England rugby star Chris Ashton believes he had coronavirus – and has passed it on to his mum.

    The England winger described being bed-ridden over the last few weeks, following his shock switch from Sale Sharks to Harlequins.

    He said: “Coronavirus hit me hard.

    “I had fever, a sore throat, aches, loss of smell and taste. I was pretty whacked for a whole week.

    “Now my mum has got it because she was here helping with the kids. She is 63, so not good.

    “Melissa is all right, though, she’s Serbian. She is rock solid.”

  • EDEN FOR TROUBLE

    Real Madrid are set to follow in the footsteps of Barcelona and slash their players’ pay.

    Nou Camp icon Lionel Messi yesterday confirmed he and team-mates will forego 70 per cent of their wages amid the coronavirus pandemic.

    Now a report in El Pais says bitter rivals Real are to do the same – which will mean heroes including Eden Hazard missing out on some of their bumper £400,000-a-week pay packets.

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Lockdown in luxury: £140m superyacht spotted moored off Dorset

Lockdown in luxury: Billionaire Russian oil baron’s superyacht worth £140million and measuring 272ft in length is spotted moored off Dorset with those on board ‘self-isolating’

  • It is not known whether the owner, Alexander Dzhaparidze, is on board the yacht in Poole Quay, Dorset
  • The 272ft vessel does have people on board and they are said to be self-isolating amid the Covid-19 outbreak
  • The luxury yacht, worth £140m, has a pool, jacuzzi and an indoor cinema across its five decks  
  • Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should you see a doctor?

A luxurious superyacht worth an eye-watering £140million has been spotted moored off the south coast, with the inhabitants on board confirmed to be self-isolating amid the coronavirus outbreak.

‘Here Comes The Sun’ measures a whopping 272ft and is tied up in Poole Quay in Dorset.

The stylish vessel is one of the most high-end yachts in the world and has its own infinity pool and sundeck jacuzzi.

A luxurious superyacht worth an astonishing £140million has appeared at Poole Quay, in Dorset, this week

The superyacht (pictured out at sea) is one of the most high-end yachts in the world and has become a major attraction

The yacht, which is called ‘Here Comes The Sun’, has become a huge source of excitement for interested onlookers

The Dutch-built superyacht boasts a helicopter pad, a pool, a jacuzzi and also an indoor cinema across five decks

It is currently owned by Russian oil baron Alexander Dzhaparidze, who is worth an estimated £1billion.

It is not known who is on board the enormous boat but it has been confirmed that it is being used to allow them to self-isolate.

The yacht has a number of spectacular features including a large beach club area in the stern and an indoor cinema.

There is space for up to 12 guests in the vessel’s ten rooms, which also includes a spectacular master suite.

Elsewhere there are three VIP staterooms, two double cabins and four twin cabins.

It has a top speed of 17 knots – around 20mph.

The yacht is currently owned by Russian oil baron Alexander Dzhaparidze, who is worth an estimated £1billion

The yacht is 272ft tall and the vessel has enough space for up to 12 guests, across 10 rooms on the luxury boat

The superyacht is three years old – it dates back to 2017 and it was built in Holland by a specialist firm

The vessel dates back to 2017 when it was built by specialist firm Amels Holland at their yard in Vlissingen, Holland.

It was purchased later that same year after it was showcased at both the Monaco Yacht Show and the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show.

Its interior is the work of renowned designer Tim Heywood and covers five decks.

The vessel is attracting a huge amount of attention from passers-by in Poole Quay – due to it dwarfing every other boat in the area.

The yacht has been a huge source of interest to passers-by, many of whom have stopped to take pictures of the vessel 

Here Comes The Sun had an asking price of £138m when she was sold last year – the cost of chartering her is unknown

Here Comes The Sun is available for charter, although the cost of chartering her is not listed.

She last sold in December last year when there was an asking price of £138m (Euro 155m).

A spokesman for Poole Quay said: ‘The boat arrived yesterday so we can confirm it is here.

‘Those on board are self-isolating but that is all we know at this time.’

 

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