Coronavirus

Third of Britons say they may not take coronavirus vaccine

Almost a third of Britons definitely will not or are unsure about whether they will take up a COVID-19 vaccine. (PA)
Almost a third of Britons definitely will not or are unsure about whether they will take up a COVID-19 vaccine. (PA)

Almost a third of Britons say they may not take up a vaccine for coronavirus, a poll showed, as researchers warned about the amount of anti-vaccine content circulating online.

In the study carried out by YouGov for the Centre for Countering Digital Hate (CCDH) research group, 6% of those polled said they definitely would not get vaccinated for COVID-19.

A further 10% said they would “probably not” have a vaccine, while another 15% said they did not know, meaning a total of 31% will not have one or are unsure about it.

Researchers also warned about the large amount of anti-vax misinformation spreading on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram.

The survey polled more than 1,600 people in Britain, and found 38% said they would “definitely” have a coronavirus vaccination were it made available. A further 31% said they “probably” would choose to have the vaccine, meaning 69% plan to take it.

With scientists predicting that more than three-quarters of the population would need to be vaccinated in order to have success in suppressing coronavirus, the findings could represent a threat to the ability to contain COVID-19.

Separate teams of scientists at Oxford University and Imperial College London are developing a coronavirus vaccine.

In May, the government said it had hoped there would be a vaccine available for 30 million Britons by September.

However, one health expert warned earlier this

Read the rest

Keep working or homeschool kids? Some parents face difficult choice during coronavirus

As officials mull whether and how to reopen schools come fall, parents are on the edge of their seats.

Some school districts are still looking ahead to in-person classes, as others plan to implement online options for parents who may not feel safe sending their children back to school.

For some parents, however, choosing whether to send their children back to the classroom or use online schooling options isn’t simple — especially when it comes to balancing their children’s education with work responsibilities.

“We have it good in many ways, however it’s still been a real challenge for us over the last few months,” parent Deb Perelman told KTRK.

Perelman’s husband Alex was recently laid off and the pair are struggling to juggle caring for their two children with work obligations, according to the outlet.

As the new school year looms, Perelman said she worries moms might have choose between working and taking care of their children full-time, KTRK reported.

“Childcare has always been an issue. It’s never been easy for working parents to figure out what to do with their kids all day. And this isn’t a new problem,” Perelman told the outlet. “It’s not okay to tell working parents that they should lose their livelihood. It’s not okay to say that you can go to a bar or restaurant or hair salon, but your kids can’t finish kindergarten.”

Haley Campbell, 29, decided to resign from her full-time job as an insulin pump technician in Idaho to homeschool her

Read the rest

Remote Learning to Gain From Spike in Coronavirus Cases: 4 Picks

Businesses and schools have finally started reopening in the United States but not everyone is inclined toward physically attending them given the surge in new coronavirus cases. After registering a record 50,000+ coronavirus cases on Thursday, the United States recorded another around 40,000 new cases on Sunday.

This definitely is reason enough for people to once again stay indoors. Although most Americans expect all schools to reopen in the fall, there are chances that teachers and students may not be there. This made schools shift to online education to help students complete their semester this year and with growing fears it is likely that most will prefer learning from remote locations.

Coronavirus Fears Growing

Although states have started reopening, fears too have come back haunting after a surge in fresh coronavirus cases. The United States recorded 39,379 new coronavirus cases on Sunday and many states are contemplating putting a brake on their reopening plans.

The U.S. education system has been one of the biggest casualties of the pandemic, with both teachers and students hesitant to go to school. However, students and teachers over the past couple of months have been well adapting to remote learning. Also, a recent Ipsos/USA Today found that 20% of teachers are unlikely to go back to school if their classrooms reopen in the fall. A separate survey of parents, with at least one child in K-12, say 30% are very likely to opt for at-home learning.

Online Education to Gain Traction        

Schools across the world

Read the rest

Scientists Plan To Urge WHO To Take Airborne Spread Of Coronavirus More Seriously

A group of 239 scientists plans to urge the World Health Organization to more seriously consider the threat that the novel coronavirus may be spread by microscopic particles in the air.

The New York Times first reported Saturday that an international coalition of researchers will publish an open letter asking WHO to address airborne transmission of the virus. The scientists say there is growing evidence tiny aerosols can linger in the air indoors and result in new infections.

Throughout the pandemic, WHO has maintained that the virus spreads mainly through larger respiratory droplets or contact and has primarily urged people to wash their hands and socially-distance to prevent infection. These droplets, released by coughs or sneezes, are heavier than smaller aerosols and fall to the floor more quickly, thus presenting less of a threat if proper distance is maintained between a healthy and infected person.

However, if airborne transmission of the coronavirus is a significant threat, it could dramatically impact safety guidelines. According to the Times, people would need to wear masks inside places with poor ventilation even if they were socially distancing. Ventilation systems in schools and businesses would need to be updated to use powerful new filtration. Health care workers would also require high-quality N95 masks to filter out even the smallest droplets.

The scientists’ letter, titled “It Is Time to Address Airborne Transmission of COVID-19,” will be published this week in the journal Clinical Infectious Diseases. 

Don Milton, a co-author of the letter and a professor at

Read the rest

Schools buy miles of plexiglass ahead of potential reopenings amid coronavirus pandemic

As millions of students return to school — be it K-12 or university — they’ll return to familiar settings in their classroom with one obvious addition: layers of plexiglass.

It remains unclear if schools — universities in particular — can reopen campuses amid a surge of coronavirus cases and new restrictions such as the 14-day quarantines demanded from those who travel from various to the tri-state area of Connecticut, New Jersey and New York.

Sheets of plexiglass would play a big role in a reopening, and schools across the country are investing in the plastic sheet to create a division in common spaces such as in libraries, classrooms — and even school buses — to defend against transmission of coronavirus.

“We’re hitting records… week in week out, at this point from a sales perspective,” Ryan Schroeder, CEO of Plaskolite, one of the country’s biggest plexiglass makers, told Yahoo Finance. “Orders have been substantially higher [than normal]. So we are really, at this point, running all our sheet machines at full capacity… around the clock.” 

Pupils sitting behind partition boards made of plexiglass attend a class at a primary school, during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Den Bosch, Netherlands, May 8, 2020. (PHOTO: REUTERS/Piroschka van de Wouw)

Plexiglass seller is ‘hitting records’

A Dallas-area school district recently ordered 30,000 sheets of plexiglass, or about five miles.

In Roanoke County, Virginia, the school district has placed an order for 3,600 square feet of plexiglass “to create barriers for each school

Read the rest