Coronavirus pandemic

Vanuatu receives more COVID-19 testing equipment

On behalf of the Government of Vanuatu, Minister of Health, James Bule thanked the High Commissioners of Australia and New Zealand and representatives of SPC and WHO. He said… “I want to request that our partners please continue to stand with us in this fight to keep our country free of COVID-19.”

In addition to the test cartridges delivered Monday 21 July 2020, Vanuatu has also been provided with 8400 swab specimen kits to support testing, PPE (masks, gowns, gloves) to keep health workers safe, thermometers and other medical supplies.

TVNZ looks to cut between 70 and 90 jobs

The state-owned television network had gone into consultation with its employees "relating to proposed changes across the business."

Kenrick said the proposed changes could see 70 to 90 roles cut within the business.

"TVNZ's revenue dropped 30 percent during the nationwide lockdown," Kenrick said.

He said the changes were necessary to protect the "financial sustainability" of the network which continued to be affected by Covid-19's hit on the advertising market.

Japan launches surprise fireworks to lift spirits amid pandemic

The shows were held at secret locations, each lasting five minutes from 20:00 local time (12:00 BST).

Organisers set a time limit for the displays to avoid crowds gathering.

Initially, they said the time and date of the event would not be revealed but later reversed course, deciding a sudden pyrotechnics show could cause distress to some.

Filling the skies with a burst of light, the fireworks lasted long enough for people who did not know about it in advance to view them from the street or their homes.

Google reveals travel habits during the pandemic

The tech firm will publish details of the different types of places people are going to on a county-by-county basis in the UK, as well as similar data for 130 other countries.

The plan is to issue a regular updates with the figures referring back to activity from two or three days prior.

The company has promised that individuals' privacy will be preserved.

The readings are based on location data gathered via the Google Maps app or one of the firm's other mobile services.

Pandemic is 'accelerating', WHO warns as cases pass 300,000

It took 67 days from the first reported of Covid-19 to reach 100,000 cases, 11 days for the second 100,000, and just four days for the third 100,000.

But WHO Director General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said it was still possible to "change the trajectory".

He urged countries to adopt rigorous testing and contact-tracing strategies.