World death records on COVID-19 have hit 419,020, just as the total confirmed recovery and discharged cases now rose to 3,778,218. But the confirmed worldwide cases is 7,458,921.
The latest shows that in Wales, nine more people have died after testing positive for coronavirus.
The total number of deaths in people with lab-confirmed coronavirus since the outbreak began has reached 1,419, Public Health Wales said yesterday.
An additional 38 new cases of the virus have also been confirmed, taking the total number of cases in Wales to 14,518 since the start of the outbreak.
Meanwhile, United Kindom Prime Minister Boris Johnson is considering reducing the two-metre social-distancing restriction to allow schools in England to reopen fully by September.
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer criticised the UK Government’s efforts to get pupils in England back into class, using an article in The Daily Telegraph to claim “mismanagement” was putting at risk both the welfare and education of children.
The newspaper reported Mr Johnson is looking at following World Health Organisation advice and cutting the distance people should remain apart from two metres to one – guidance already followed by countries including France, Denmark and Singapore.
At Prime Minister’s Questions on Wednesday, he promised to “keep that two-metre rule under constant review”.
As well as helping to make it easier for schools to open, slashing the social distancing restriction could help pubs and restaurants to start up again, with Business Secretary Alok Sharma this week accepting that “for economic reasons, businesses will want to take a look at this two-metre rule”.
In a sign the Government could be preparing to announce a change, Sir Patrick Vallance, the UK’s chief scientific adviser, said at the daily Downing Street press briefing the two-metre advice was “not a rule”.
He said: “It is wrong to portray this as a scientific rule that says it is two metres or nothing – that is not what the advice has been and it is not what the advice is now.”
But Wales’ chief medical officer Frank Atherton has said there was “good evidence” the two-metre rule worked.
He said: “There are between two and 10 times the benefits of staying two metres apart, compared to one metre. A move to one metre would be problematic and not one we are recommending in Wales.”
Warning of no routine dental work in Wales until 2021
Dentists say routine dental work, such as getting a filling, won’t be available until the new year as they struggle with the current coronavirus guidelines and a growing backlog of cases.
Some say they are being forced to pull out perfectly “saveable” teeth and arrange treatment in England at the weekends because of the current rules in Wales.
There are even reports of one patient travelling to Sweden to get a chipped tooth fixed and people waiting for false teeth after their dog ate their dentures.
Dr Charlie Stephanakis, a dentist in Cardiff, has warned there is an “impending disaster” facing the dental health of the Welsh public and claimed people in Wales were being discriminated against. Read more here.
More restrictions eased in England