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Newspaper headlines: Leaked back-to-work coronavirus plan and NHS app

Newspaper headlines: Leaked back-to-work coronavirus plan and NHS app

Newspaper headlines: Leaked back-to-work coronavirus plan and NHS app By BBC News Staff Image caption Leaked government guidance on how people could return to work makes the front pages of several newspapers. The Daily Mirror suggests regions of the UK could face “local lockdowns” if there are signs of another virus outbreak. The draft documents

Newspaper headlines: Leaked back-to-work coronavirus plan and NHS app


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Leaked government guidance on how people could return to work makes the front pages of several newspapers. The Daily Mirror suggests regions of the UK could face “local lockdowns” if there are signs of another virus outbreak. The draft documents also showed the government is considering relaxing the two-metre social distancing rule for some businesses, the paper says.

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The Sun says the draft documents suggest one-way systems will be the norm in offices, and employers will be encouraged to keep staff working from home. The paper also says it has been told social distancing rules could be in place for up to a year. It says the government has told workplaces that measures such as staggered shift times and protective screens at desks could be needed well into next year.

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The Guardian also reports on the draft guidance for workplaces but focuses on the reaction from trade unions, which have warned workers could stage walkouts “unless the government can guarantee their safety”. Labour and the unions say the guidance is vague and inadequate, and that people with conditions like asthma and diabetes could be forced to work without the right protection. Meanwhile, the paper’s main picture shows five friends from Birmingham who all died with the disease.

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Trade unions are “at loggerheads” with business leaders over the draft workplace rules, the Financial Times suggests. The paper says Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has joined unions in calling for firms to publish workplace risk assessments for the virus, but businesses say that could be too bureaucratic. Meanwhile, the paper’s front page carries a photo of two pensioners in Italy embracing their grandchildren after two months of social distancing.

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There’s some positive news about the coronavirus outbreak on the Metro’s front page: London’s Nightingale Hospital, which was built in 10 days to prepare for the pandemic, is being “mothballed” after infections fell in the capital. There are just 20 people being treated there at the moment, the paper says – despite the hospital having capacity for 4,000 patients. The Metro adds the hospital could resume taking patients if the need arises, but for now the current patients will be transferred elsewhere.

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Also leading with a positive story on its front page is the Daily Express. It says the daily number of people who have died with coronavirus is at its lowest level since March, describing it as a “glimmer of hope”. The paper also refers to the plan for an NHS app which is being trialled on the Isle of Wight, and which helps to track the spread of the virus.

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The new contact-tracing app for smartphones is the focus for the Times. It says ministers are planning to run a nationwide campaign telling people it is their duty to download the new “track-and-trace” app, which is already being trialled on the Isle of Wight. But the paper says some MPs and academics have expressed concerns about privacy, asking whether a “less intrusive system” could have been designed. GCHQ has published a blog to allay privacy fears, the paper adds.

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Meanwhile, the Daily Telegraph looks at the impact of the government’s financial policies to help people affected by coronavirus. It says 27 million people – or more than half of Britain’s adult population – are now being paid by the state. The paper says Chancellor Rishi Sunak has warned the furlough scheme – where the government pays 80% of workers’ salaries – is “not sustainable”.

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The Daily Star leads with a story about the country’s weekly Clap for Carers, where people open their windows and front doors and applaud NHS staff and key workers. The paper says one medic is claiming the Thursday night clap has led to a spike of incidents in A&E, and is asking well-wishers to “tone down the wild cheering”.

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Meanwhile, the Daily Mail says the government has ordered an “urgent review” into whether obesity, ethnicity and gender raise the risk of dying from the coronavirus. The paper says Health Secretary Matt Hancock said it was too early to confirm that there was a link to weight, but said data from around the world had suggested this was the case. University of Liverpool researchers warned that obesity increased the risk of dying by the virus by more than a third, the paper adds.

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