Newspaper headlines: Virus ‘nears peak’ and praise for fundraising ‘hero’



Newspaper headlines: Virus ‘nears peak’ and praise for fundraising ‘hero’


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The number of new cases of coronavirus in the UK is “flattening out”, the Times says. Its report says the UK is reaching the peak of the epidemic and will soon be able to finalise plans for lifting lockdown measures. The front page also features a photo of Mary Agyeiwaa Agyapong, a pregnant nurse whose baby was delivered successfully after she died with the virus.

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The Metro says the 28-year-old nurse died on Sunday at the Luton hospital where she worked, after her daughter was delivered by emergency Caesarean section. Ms Agyapong was “valued and loved” and her “miracle” baby daughter is a “beacon of light”, the report adds.

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From young survivors to old, another “ray of hope” is Connie Titchen, who at 106 is thought to be the oldest patient to survive coronavirus, the Guardian reports. The paper’s lead story says there has been a surge in the number of people dying at home because they are “reluctant” to call an ambulance.

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The Daily Mirror says it is “unbelievable” that “under-fire” Health Secretary Matt Hancock has offered a badge to care home staff working during the pandemic. While Mr Hancock said a badge would let workers “publically identify themselves”, as NHS staff do, the paper’s tone is one of scorn – as it references “desperate staff” pleading for protective equipment.

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By contrast, the Daily Mail says the green badge is a “victory” for carers. It says Mr Hancock’s promise of a “single brand” badge for care workers came after a campaign by the paper for staff to be recognised for their “heroic work”. The badge Mr Hancock displayed was introduced last year by Care England, which represents care home providers.

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The i describes the “living hell” of working in a care home, which it calls the “forgotten front line” of the coronavirus epidemic. The paper says staff still do not have access to sufficient protective equipment, and that carers are worried they could lose their jobs if they raise concerns about their safety.

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Despite coronavirus “finally” reaching its peak in the UK, the Daily Telegraph says the government is expected to extend lockdown measures for another three weeks on Thursday. It adds ministers will face fresh accusations that it “does not trust the public enough” to disclose when and how the measures will be lifted.

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“Testing times”, a sub-head in the Financial Times reads, as it draws attention to the UK government’s struggle to meet its daily target for the number of coronavirus tests carried out. The paper says Health Secretary Matt Hancock is still aiming to meet the target of 100,000 tests a day by the end of April – despite not reaching its target of 25,000 per day this week.

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Calls for a fundraising “hero” to be knighted make the front page of the Daily Express. Second World War veteran Tom Moore, 99, has raised £10m for NHS charities after his sponsored walk – 100 laps of his garden before he turns 100 – went viral online. The country is “in awe”, the Express says.

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“Arise Sir Tom” reads the headline in the Daily Star, as it joins calls for Mr Moore to be knighted for his £10m achievement. The war veteran said the response to his call for sponsors has been “completely out of this world”.

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Meanwhile the Sun is backing a call from Lord Ashcroft to award the George Cross medal to front line healthcare workers. It says the award is given “for acts of the greatest heroism or for most conspicuous courage in circumstance of extreme danger”.

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