Covid: Few with symptoms self-isolating, and AstraZeneca vaccine blood clot riskson April 1, 2021 at 6:24 am

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Five things you need to know about the coronavirus pandemic this Thursday morning.

Here are five things you need to know about the coronavirus pandemic this Thursday morning. We’ll have another update for you this evening.

Fewer than one in five people request a Covid-19 test if they have symptoms, while the number who follow full self-isolation rules is low, a large study of the test and trace system suggests. The report, published in the British Medical Journal, also finds only half of people know the main Covid symptoms. Experts say the findings suggest the impact of the £37bn NHS Test and Trace system is “limited”. but the Department for Health and Social Care said test and trace had saved “countless lives”, adding that the latest ONS data found the “overwhelming majority” self-isolated when asked to.

NHS poster

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Unusual blood clots in the brain have been detected in a handful of people after they were injected with the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine. These “cerebral venous sinus thromboses”, or CVSTs, have led some countries – including Germany, France and Canada – to restrict who can be given the jab. The World Health Organization and the European Medicines Agency say the benefits of the vaccine outweigh any risks. Scientists and medicines safety regulators around the world are trying to figure out if the vaccine is genuinely causing these strokes, how big any risk might be and what that might mean for vaccination programmes.

AstraZeneca vaccine

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Pharmaceutical firms manufacturing Covid-19 vaccines should make enough for everyone in the world or voluntarily hand their technology to developing countries, says the new WTO head. Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala says it is “not acceptable” to leave poorer countries at the “end of the queue” for vaccines. She pointed to AstraZeneca’s deal to transfer its know-how to a mass vaccine manufacturer in India. Such “voluntary licensing… could save many more people,” she adds.

A medical worker inoculates a man with a dose of the Covid-19 coronavirus vaccine at a hospital in Amritsar on March 30, 2021

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It has been just over a year since the UK had its first national lockdown. Since then, preliminary research has found many people who say their memories have been affected, and that they’ve lost some of their skills. But is this true? Neuropsychologist Catherine Loveday told the BBC how our ability to remember may have been impacted, and what we can do to improve it.

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Togo in West Africa has found a high-tech way to find people who need financial help in the pandemic – and then send them emergency cash. They use computers to search for clues in satellite images, then distribute money through mobile phones. Find out how it works here.

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Find more information, advice and guides on our coronavirus page. How is Europe dealing with the third wave? We’ve had a look.

Government statistics show 126,713 people have now died, up 43 in the past 24 hours. In total 4,345,788 people have tested positive, up 4,052. while there are 4,176 people in hospital. In total 30,905,538 people have received their first vaccination, up 224,590 in the past 24 hours.
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