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Newspaper headlines: Coronavirus ‘care homes catastrophe’ and ‘stick with lockdown’

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Newspaper headlines: Coronavirus ‘care homes catastrophe’ and ‘stick with lockdown’


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A coronavirus “care home catastrophe” has been “dramatically laid bare” by the UK government’s chief medical officer, the Daily Mail says. Prof Chris Whitty told the daily Downing Street briefing 92 care homes in the UK had detected an outbreak of the virus in the past day alone. The Mail says “terrified” staff members are refusing to work in the face of the “grave threat”.

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The Metro leads with Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab’s plea for the public to stick to coronavirus lockdown rules as “we’ve sacrificed too much to ease up now”.

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The i also leads on what Mr Raab said at the Downing Street briefing. It focuses on his assertion that it would be too soon for the government to lift the lockdown, or reveal its “exit strategy”, for fear of risking a second wave of infections.

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Stringent measures to curb the spread of the virus in the UK will be extended until at least 7 May, the Times reports. It says Mr Raab will announce the decision on Thursday. In brighter news, the paper’s colourful splash image shows a smiling baby, Amanda. Her mother praised NHS staff as the five-month-old was discharged from hospital after treatment for the virus, the Times says.

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The Daily Telegraph claims the government has been “so successful” in convincing people of the need to stay at home that it might be tricky to persuade them it is safe to return to work when the lockdown is lifted. The paper also draws attention to one of Mr Raab’s more positive messages – that there are signs the UK is “starting to win this struggle” with the virus.

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Also opting for an up-beat approach to coronavirus coverage, the Sun’s front page carries a “thank you” message from England’s chief nursing officer. Ruth May says families who stayed at home during the Easter weekend “made a real difference” in helping to save lives. The tabloid points out the UK has seen, for the third day in a row, a drop in the daily death toll.

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In a campaign calling for more personal protective equipment (PPE) for front-line health and care workers, the Daily Mirror’s bleak front page shows some of the faces of those who have died with coronavirus. “No more”, the headline pleads. As workers have given their lives, the government must give their colleagues the kit they need to stay safe while treating patients, the paper says.

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Also focusing on PPE, the Guardian claims the UK missed three chances to join an EU scheme to bulk-buy kit – and is not part of “key talks about future purchases” either. The EU joint procurement scheme has led some countries to have excess equipment, the paper says. The UK government has previously said it did not receive an invitation to the scheme, the paper adds.

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The Daily Express urges the prime minister to follow advice to rest up and “stay put” as he recovers from coronavirus. The paper claims Boris Johnson, who is recovering at Chequers after being discharged from hospital, has been told he cannot yet return to his duties.

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Meanwhile a “rare” international effort to support the oil market has fallen “flat”, the Financial Times reports. The Opec oil cartel won the backing of the US and other G20 nations to prop up the market – where demand has fallen. The plan failed, the paper says, because traders are “still nursing doubts” that supportive measures would be enough to “counter the blow” of coronavirus.

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And fears of a national beer shortage make the front page of the Daily Star. “Dreams of a messy post-lockdown party at the pub” are “under threat”, the tabloid claims – adding some 50 million stale pints have “gone down the drain”.

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