Coronavirus: Latest updates, news and reports


Final updates for today from EN4 News

  • Public Health England have criticised Englands decision to exclude Mako Vunipola from Saturday’s game against Wales. PHE said in a statement: “Earlier this week the RFU asked a player, having returned from travel overseas, to not attend the camp to avoid the risk of spread, which was not necessary as he was not displaying any symptoms. The RFU accept this and this clarification.”
  • Euro BMX rounds in Verona, Italy are postponed due to the COVID-19 virus. The European Cycling Union (UEC) announced on Thursday: “The UEC Management Board, the UEC BMX Commission, the Italian Cycling Federation (FCI) and the organiser are already actively looking for another date in the UCI calendar so that the event meets the scheduled deadlines for awarding points to qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.”
  • Ultra Music Festival 2020 has announced It will be postponed until 2021. Miami  Mayor  Francis Suarez announced the news and  said: “We’re emphasising to the public that this decision is not a cause for alarm or panic, but rather that we are doing it with an abundance of caution.”


Studio update 

Owen Garner is joined by Lewis Robertson in the EN4 studio to discuss the latest coronavirus updates and figures.

  • The Department for Health and Social Care has announced that the COVID-19 cases in the South West of England has reached 22
  • Reports that the UK now has 163 confirmed cases of the COVID-19 virus.
  • WHO Director General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has warned that some countries have: “either not taken this seriously enough, or have decided there is nothing they can do. We are concerned in some countries the level of political commitment and the actions that demonstrate that commitment do not match the level of the threat we all face. This is not a drill, this is not a time to give up, the sis not a time for excuses, this is a time for pulling out all the stops.”
  • President Trump has signed an emergency bill that has made $8.3 billion available for the US government to combat the COVID-19 virus. President Trump said: “We’ve signed the 8.3 billion. I asked for 2 1/2, and I got 8.3. And I’ll take it.”


Full story on EN4 News

EN4 News reporter Jamie Braidwood has the latest from the Scottish figures released at 2pm: “Earlier this week, the Scottish Government said a ‘reasonable worst-case scenario’ could see 50 to 80% of the Scottish population contract coronavirus.”

Coronavirus: Confirmed number of cases in Scotland rises to 11



Local and international updates  

  • EN4 News reporter Ruaraidh Gilmour provides a step-by-step guide on how to correctly wash your hands to minimise the contamination risk of the virus.
  • The Indian Army is to expand quarantine facilities to cater for 1,500 people.



  • The latest Scottish figures have been released and 11 people have now contracted the COVID-19 Virus, an increase of five people. Areas of infection are; Tayside, Ayrshire & Arran, Forth Valley Greater Glasgow and Clyde, Grampian, Fife and Lothian.
  • A second man has reportadly  died due to the coronavirus, a man in his 80’s has passed away while being treated at Milton Keynes Hospital, Buckinghamshire


PAPER REVIEW- Owen Garner with what the papers are saying on the outbreak 


  • Prevention efforts to contain the COVID-19 virus are being made more difficult as Secretary of State for the United States Mike Pompeo has said that China had not been forthcoming initially on the COVID-19 virus.
  • Fraudsters are taking advantage of the COVID-19 outbreak, according to the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB). 21 cases have been identified where coronavirus has been mentioned in with a loss of over £800,000 in the UK.Advice issued by the Scottish Business Resilience Centre is: “Watch out for scam messages Don’t click on the links or attachments in suspicious emails, and never respond to unsolicited messages and calls that ask for your personal or financial details.”


Airlines have been burning thousands of gallons of fuel on ghost flights to keep flight slots amidst Coronavirus panic 

  • EU rules dictate that at least 80% of flights run by companies must be active  otherwise they risk losing out to competitors. This has led to companies running ghost flights to ensure they don’t suffer the consequences. Grant Shapps, the UK Transport Secretary, has said: ” I am particularly concerned that, in order to satisfy the 80/20 rule, airlines may be forced to fly aircraft at very low load factors, or even empty, in order to retain their slots.”
  • President Trump has come under fire as he has now cancelled his trip to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta even as the coronavirus outbreak escalates



Confirmed cases in Iran continue to rise

  • Iran has recorded an increase in confirmed coronavirus cases. The country recorded 1,234 new cases in the past 24 hours, bringing its total to 4,747.
  • Cameroon has confirmed its first case of the coronavirus, the country’s health ministry has said. It brings the number of confirmed cases in Africa to 29.
  • In California, around 3,500 people are being held on a cruise liner while tests for coronavirus are carried out on passengers. At least four passengers have been infected and one passenger has died on the ship, the Grand Princess. Military helicopters delivered test kits to the ship, which is docked off the coast of San Francisco.


In Italy, cases of coronavirus are above 3,000, with schools and universities closed for the next 10 days.

Daniele, a resident of San Donà di Piave in the north of Italy, spoke to EN4 News about the government measures.

“In Italy some people are panicking and are very worried about the situation. They are staying inside their homes and are avoiding all social contact. While there are other people who think there isn’t anything to worry about it and everything has been too exaggerated.

“We have a had a shut-down of schools and public places. I work in a cinema and it will be at least a month until we are able to open again. The Government have told us to always wash our hands and avoid being too close to people. There is a one-meter distance we are supposed to keep, at all costs.”


  • The total cases of COVID-19 has reached 100,000, according to BNO News.

  • England Netball have announced there are no plans to cancel upcoming fixtures. The team said in a statement: “We are aware that the coronavirus outbreak is a very fluid and rapidly changing situation. We are in regular contact with the relevant authorities and venues, franchises and all key partners and stakeholders to monitor the situation.”
  • Starbucks have temporarily banned reusable cups in an attempt to combat the coronavirus outbreak. Customers will still receive a 25p discount for bringing reusable cups with them, however, drinks will be served in disposable cups. It is understood Starbucks made the decision internally, rather than on the advice of health officials.



Herald health correspondent labels Scottish government “disingenuous” over Monday statement 

The Scottish Government said on Monday that a “reasonable worst case scenario” could see 50 to 80% of the population contract coronavirus.

However, Helen McCardle, health correspondent for The Herald, has told EN4 News that the figure “doesn’t really add up” and has suggested the Scottish Government has been “disingenuous” with its statement.

She told EN4 News’ Iain Leggat: “What I thought was unusual about that is that when you go away and you look at the latest figures from the World Health Organisation and you look at China, and Hubei province, which of course is the epicentre of it, and you calculate the number of cases they’ve had so far against the population and you end up with a rate of 0.1%.

“I spoke to a couple of experts, one of them being Hugh Pennington [emeritus professor of bacteriology at Aberdeen University], and another expert in data science from Edinburgh University, and the view of both of them is that what the Scottish Government was presenting wasn’t really realistic because it was based on the idea of there being no containment policies put in place.

“Of course if we get to the stage where we get hundreds of cases in Scotland, at that point of course there are going to be containment measures put in place. We’re going to consider closing schools, maybe changes to public transport, people working from home.

“So that’s why the 50-80% figure doesn’t really add up. The other side to that is that the Scottish Government are being a bit disingenuous about is they present that 50-80% figure and say we’re well equipped and well resourced in the NHS to cope with that, which we wouldn’t be.”

Listen to the interview in full below

  • #CoronaVirusChallenge is currently trending on the social media platform with thousands of people sharing humorous pictures and videos of issues relating to the COVID-19 outbreak. The posts include everything from bottles of corona with anti-virus masks on to people ‘feet-shaking’ as opposed to shaking hands.





  • The COVID-19 virus is nearing a total of 100,000 cases with the number of confirmed cases across the world standing at 98,782.
  • (Credit: EN4 News)


  • BRUNTSFIELD  Pharmacists Janette Currie and Yas Yousaf comment on the panic buying of sanitiser and bacterial deterrent items that have rendered their store empty. Ms Currie has said: ” People are panicking. Anything that they think is going to do the job, they are using it.” Mr Yousaf commented on the current situation saying:  “It’s been a challenging and demanding time for us to try and get the face masks in and explain that it’s really a case of observing good hygiene.”


The Vatican announces first coronavirus case

  • The Vatican has announced its first case of COVID-19 today just after 9:30am. The announcement comes shortly after Pope Francis tested negative for the virus earlier this week on Tuesday.
  • Bollywood awards ceremony has been called off due to COVID-19 fears. A second leading media industry event, The Frames conference is set to go ahead, but without Italian participation due to the spread of the virus. “We would like to inform you that Italy is not participating at FICCI Frames 2020 due to recent outbreak of Novel Coronavirus disease in Italy,” FICCI said in a statement.
  • Scotland is still in the containment phase, according to Chief Medical officer Dr Catherine Calderwood: “Where we are on the dial at the moment the switch is still in containment, very much in containment, and gradually that dial will move around to the delay phase.”
  • Updated Scotland Coronavirus figures to be revealed at 14:00 today, EN4 News will be covering the updated results by the Scottish Government in the studio.

  • 9:30 

    Edinburgh music festival cancelled 

    • The Edinburgh Harp Festival has been cancelled amid fears of the COVID-19 virus. The festival has also announced that ticket holders will be contacted in regard to purchases. A spokesman for the festival has said: ” We regret having to Ann

    • England prop Mako Vunipola has been reported by Sky’s Thomas Moore to be in the all clear for coronavirus, and did not need to leave the training camp ahead of the Wales game as Public Health England  tells England Rugby he has no symptoms.



    What’s the latest?

    To recap Thursday’s key developments:

          • A women in her 70s became the first person to die from coronavirus in the UK
          • First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said there are six confirmed cases of coronavirus in Scotland and expects numbers to rise “possibly very rapidly” in the coming days
          • Confirmed cases in Italy rose to over 3,000 as schools closed for a period of 10 days
          • Iran has closed its schools and universities until March 20
          • England’s Six Nations matches against Italy – scheduled to take place in Rome next weekend – have been postponed.
          • Britons have been urged by the  UK government to self isolate if they have been to any part of Italy in the past fortnight.


    Good morning

    Throughout the day EN4 News will be providing live updates, news and reports on the coronavirus outbreak.

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