Covid: Rioting in the Netherlands, and mental health deaths increaseon November 20, 2021 at 8:19 am

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

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

Violent scenes have erupted in the Netherlands as hundreds of protesters gathered to oppose Covid-19 measures in the country. Rioting in Rotterdam saw stones and fireworks being thrown at police and vehicles being set ablaze. Officers fired warning shots and direct shots “because the situation was life-threatening”, a police spokesperson told Reuters news agency. At least two people were injured as a result of the shots, they added. A water cannon was also used. The Netherlands imposed a three-week partial Covid lockdown earlier this month. Several European countries are imposing restrictions as cases rise.

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The number of deaths of people being treated under the Mental Health Act in England rose during the coronavirus pandemic, estimates suggest. The Care Quality Commission’s findings come amid concerns over staff shortages in psychiatric units. Some 490 people died while being detained under the act in the year to March 2021 – 324 of them for non-Covid reasons, the regulator says. The average overall figure between 2012 and 2019 was 273, the CQC adds. Former Conservative Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has warned that staff shortages were now compromising patient safety in “every part of the NHS”.

Samantha Millers
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Workplaces across the world are starting to introduce policies around employees’ vaccination statuses. And it seems even Grand Slam champions are not exempt. Australian Open tournament director Craig Tiley has confirmed that unvaccinated players will not be allowed to compete in next year’s event, which runs from 17 to 30 January in Melbourne. Time will tell how this will affect the line-up for the tournament. Defending men’s champion Novak Djokovic has said he does not want to publicly reveal his vaccination status. “Novak knows he will have to be vaccinated to play,” Tiley said. “We would love to have him here.”

Novak Djokovic

Image source, Reuters

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What a difference six months can make. Just seven weeks before the Tokyo Olympics, only 3.5% of Japan’s population had been fully vaccinated. Now, 76% of Japanese are fully immunised, achieving a higher vaccinated population percentage than almost anywhere in the world. Here’s how the country did it. Meanwhile, see how fast the vaccine rollout is progressing around the world.

A Tokyo fire brigade staff member (right) administers a dose of the Covid-19 coronavirus vaccine at Aoyama University in Tokyo on August 2, 2021

Image source, Getty Images

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Whether your passion is needlepoint or kneading dough, for many lockdown was an opportunity to revisit hobbies, or even pick up new ones. Alice Smith, 34, was on maternity leave and in lockdown in Australia. She used the time to explore her new-found enthusiasm for knit-one-purl-one, which she says helped ease her anxiety. “It also uses your hands – so you can’t look at your phone,” she said. A craft that many thought peaked in the mid-20th Century is booming, with companies seeing a sharp rise in demand for needles and wool.

Alice Smith and her baby Freddie

Image source, Alice Smith

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You can find more information, advice and guides on our coronavirus page.

Wondering which children are being vaccinated – and why? Here’s our explainer.

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Image source, BBC

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