Kids ARE just as likely to get coronavirus as adults, stats show

KIDS are just as likely as adults to contract coronavirus, the most accurate study of the crisis in England suggests.

The findings will intensify the row between teaching unions and the government, who want to bring back schools gradually for primary pupils and Year 10s and Year 12s from June 1.

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Unions are opposed to the plan and have warned classes may not resume until September.

They have asked the government to urgently publish the scientific evidence behind the decision to reopen England's schools to more pupils from June 1.

A survey for the Office for National Statistics of 10,705 people found "no evidence" of differences between age groups in those who tested positive.

Simon Clarke, associate professor in cellular microbiology of the University of Reading, who was not part of the ONS project, said: "We have a horrible choice ahead of us with reopening schools.

"Back when we first started learning about this virus, we knew from China that children did not seem to be so affected. That leads to two questions. The first is whether they get the virus. And now we know that yes, they do. The second is whether they transmit it. We don't know the answer to that."

Last month a study by the Royal College of Paediatricians and Child Health, found children "do not play a significant role" in spreading the deadly virus.

They said the evidence "consistently demonstrates reduced infection and infectivity of children in the transmission chain".

And there has not been a single case of a child under 10 passing on coronavirus in contact tracing carried out by the World Health Organisation.

However there are reports some kids suffer a rare inflammatory syndrome weeks after being infected with Covid-19.

In a very small number of children it can cause serious complications, with some needing intensive care.

Up to 100 children in the UK have been affected and studies suggest the same reaction is being seen in kids elsewhere in Europe.

It is likely to be caused by a delayed immune response to the virus which looks like Kawasaki disease.


Council leaders have said schools should be allowed to make their owns decisions about reopening – especially in areas where there is a higher proportion of black, Asian and minority ethnic residents.

That comes after analysis by the Office for National Statistics suggested black men and women are more than four times more likely to die from coronavirus than white people.

The government has faced increasing pressure from union leaders and MPs to release the science behind its plans to get kids back in schools.

Osama Rahman, chief scientific adviser at the Department for Education, said there was a "low degree of confidence" in evidence suggesting children transmit Covid-19 less than adults.

Former Labour education secretary Lord Blunkett said he was "surprised" by union leaders' attitude towards reopening schools.

He said: "I am being deeply critical of the attitude. It's about how can we work together to make it work as safely as possible. Anyone who works against that in my view is working against the interests of children."

Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said: "When you have medical and scientific advice that is saying it's the right time to start bringing schools back in a phased and controlled manner, it seems only the right thing to do and the only responsible thing to do."

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Everyone in UK 'will get winter flu jab'

Everyone in Britain ‘should get the winter flu jab to stop NHS getting overwhelmed if coronavirus still poses a threat’

  • Concerns a second wave of Covid-19 could coincide with winter flu influx 
  • Govt. ministers were reportedly advised to provide everyone with flu vaccine
  • Vaccine is currently free on the NHS for young children and those aged over 65
  • Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19

Everyone in the UK may have to get the winter flu jab to prevent the NHS from getting overwhelmed this winter if coronavirus still poses a threat. 

Government ministers have reportedly been advised to vaccinate all members of society by next winter for free, in an effort to free up hospital beds. 

Under current policy, less than half of the population are eligible to a free flu jab. 

Everyone in the UK will reportedly have to get the winter flu jab to prevent the NHS from getting overwhelmed this winter if coronavirus still poses a threat (Stock image) 

The vaccine is currently free on the NHS for young children and those aged 65 or over. 

The possibility of vaccines for everyone in the country is now being looked into by government scientists, the Sun reported. 

It comes amid concerns a second wave of Covid-19 in the winter months could overwhelm hospitals if it coincides with an outbreak of the flu. 

Chief medical officer Professor Chris Whitty has previously warned that a second wave of coronavirus during the winter could prove devastating. 

In a lecture last month, he said: ‘We all need to be honest about the fact there are no easy solutions here.

‘It is entirely plausible for a second wave to actually be more severe than the first if it is not mitigated.’

Public Health England estimates that on average 17,000 people die from the flu each year. 

The current UK death toll from Covid-19 stands at 33,186 

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‘How to Get Away with Murder’ star Rome Flynn fields moms in his DMs

“How To Get Away With Murder” star Rome Flynn says moms have been sliding into his DMs — to try and set him up with their daughters.

“Parents reach out to me like, ‘This is my daughter. She just graduated from college. These are her grades. This was her minor,’ ” the 28-year-old told Page Six. “And the kid of the mom doesn’t even know their mom is trying to set them up. They’re really embarrassed.”

Meanwhile, his own mom won over his “Murder” co-stars with her cooking. “My mom’s a chef. I brought her on set with me and she made food for everybody,” he said. After that, “Viola [Davis] — all she did was ask when is my mom coming back to cook again.”

Flynn released his new single, “Keep Me in Mind,” last month and has been working on music since the show wrapped in February. Fans had been expecting a two-hour episode to end the series, but Flynn said, “It’s 43 minutes long. I haven’t seen it yet. I want to have this live experience with everybody else.”

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Get to know Adele's inner circle of celebrity friends

Adele made a rare appearance on her social media this week to celebrate her 32nd birthday and friends also posted snaps to show their love for the singer.

And while many fans feel like Adele is their best friend from afar, some lucky people in this world actually get to call the London girl a friend IRL.

The Rolling In The Deep star has long been the kind of star that many wish they could go down to the pub with, but who exactly does Adele let her hair down with these days?

As she split her time between the U.K. and the States, Adele has friends all over the globe whom she’s made connections with at different times in her life.

From her childhood friends to some big Hollywood names, the newly-divorced star has a very fun inner circle as far as we can tell.

Lauren Paul

Lauren Paul is the wife of Breaking Bad star Aaron Paul, and she hasn’t known Adele for more than a few years but they’ve become the best of friends.

Lauren publicly posted a birthday message to Adele stating: ‘You came into my life a few months before I has Story and you quickly became one of the most important figures in my journey as a new mother.

‘You have taught me so much. You glow because your heart is full. I’m so proud of the human you are.’

And she shared a never-before-seen snap of herself, Adele, Nicole Richie and Jedidiah Jenkins (more on him below) during a recent trip to Las Vegas.

Lauren has been a huge part of Adele’s life since 2018 and last summer she was part of the group Adele went on a wilderness trip with.

The group did everything from admiring nature, relaxing onboard a boat and just being young, wild and free.

Ayda Field

Ayda Field is the wife of singer Robbie Williams as well as a panellist on Loose Women.

She even worked as a judge on The X Factor alongside her husband back in 2018.

But the star has long been friends with Adele, and she was even with the singer at the 2013 Golden Globe awards.

Ayda got a shoutout when the singer won a gong for Skyfall as Adele told the audience: ‘Oh my god! Honestly, I’ve come out with my friend Ayda, we’re new mums, we’ve literally come out for a night out.

‘[It’s] very strange to be here, thank you so much for letting me be a part of your world for a night, it’s amazing…we’ve been laughing!’

And Ayda’s personal trainer has been credited with Adele’s recent training regime after she claimed she been doing workouts with Adele at Robbie and Ayda’s home.

Harry Styles and James Corden

Adele, Harry and James all had a lovely holiday together in the Anguilla and Virgin Islands over the New Year break.

The singer was seen racing into the sea clutching a drink at one stage and fans could not get over the fact pics of their faves were flooding the internet.

Apparently they left an impressive £1500 tip for their server following a meal and spent time chatting with fellow holidaymakers who said the group looked like they were having the best time ever.

Plus, we can all thank James for convincing Adele to do the best carpool karaoke ever!

Jedidiah Jenkins

Travel writer, environmental advocate, and professional Jedidiah has featured quite a few times on Adele’s Instagram if you look close enough.

He famously left his job at age 30 and cycled from Oregon to Patagonia, and these days he is an Instagram personality with a lot of amazing friends.

These pals include Adele, One Tree Hill alum Sophia Bush, Dirty John’s Connie Britton and Aaron Paul.

Jedidiah was one of the people who joined Adele at the Spice Girls’ reunion concert in Wembley last year.

Oh, and he was very involved in her epic Summer of exploring in 2019 as well.

Laura Dockrill

Adele has been childhood friends with author Laura, meaning she’s known her for so long that she was actually able to help her pal realise when she was suffering from postpartum psychosis.

Adele wrote on Instagram: ‘This is my best friend. We have been friends for more of our lives than we haven’t. She had my beautiful godson 6 months ago and it was the biggest challenge of her life in more ways than one.

‘She has written the most intimate, witty, heartbreaking and articulate piece about her experience of becoming a new mum and being diagnosed with postpartum psychosis.’

The singer often shouts out her pal’s work as she wrote in another post: ‘My best friend, my ride or die, my beyond talented love has a new book out today!’

Plus, she officiated and sang karaoke at Laura’s wedding in 2019.

Alan Carr

Comedian Alan has been friends with Adele since 2008 after meeting at the BRIT Awards.

And the singer even held Alan’s wedding in her own house – and covered the cost!

Alan explained on The One Show: ‘I didn’t win a competition, she is a friend!

‘We’ve known her for ages, and when we told her we were getting married she said, “Can I please plan the whole day for you?” She did it all at her house. So, we got in there, and there is a grand piano with a man playing Ordinary People.

‘Then she sang with our first dance, it was absolutely amazing. I can never repay her, she’s a one-off as we all know.’

While he told This Morning: ‘She is the kindest, most sweetest, loveliest person ever. She flew us to Vegas to see Celine Dion sing. She sang my first dance. It was the best day of my life.’

Most recently, Adele watched Celine Dion’s British Summer Time gig in Hyde Park. Chilling with Alan Carr’s husband Paul Drayton.

Jennifer Lawrence

Jennifer and Adele friendship has seen them do everything from grabbing dinners together with Emma Stone, to attending Women’s Right marches with Cameron Diaz.

The two have been friends ever since they met at the Oscars in 2013, after Adele won best original song for Skyfall, whilst J-Law picked up a gong for best actress in Silver Linings Playbook.

‘I remember sneaking backstage while she performed Skyfall, trying to squeeze a ball gown past a pile of ropes and cables just to get a little closer,’ the actress admits in an essay published by Time magazine in 2016.

‘See her from another angle as if to peek behind the Great Oz’s curtains.’

She stressed how much of a great friend and mother Adele really is. ‘But what you don’t see is what a wonderful mother she is. What a wonderful partner and friend she is. That she makes her son’s Halloween costumes.

‘Adele is a gift, an international treasure, but she’s also sweet, funny, intelligent and beautiful.’

But the pair really got us all talking when they enjoyed a drunk night out visiting several bars across the New York City area, including Alan Cumming’s Cumming Club.

As well as partying in style, the pair made sure to get their makeup done by the club’s renowned drag queens.

Time will tell of her new adventures with pals will inspire some of the songs on her long-awaited next album.

But either way, we’re just glad she is living her best life with such a fun bunch.

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Get coronavirus-fighting hand sanitizer from these unexpected brands

Paul Mitchell produces hand sanitizer for coronavirus first responders

John Paul Mitchell Systems co-founder and Chairman John Paul DeJoria discusses how Paul Mitchell is aiding salons and first responders in combating coronavirus.

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Although it has been weeks since the coronavirus was declared an official global pandemic by the World Health Organization, hand sanitizer is still hard to come by on store shelves. And with traditional hand sanitizer brands like Purell being resold online for exorbitant prices, Americans aren’t always sure where they can find the portable disinfectant for their brief outings.

CORONAVIRUS HAND SANITIZER YOU CAN MAKE AT HOME — AND IT'S DOCTOR-APPROVED

That’s where non-health care-related brands are stepping in to level out the playing field. Distilleries, beauty brands and independent small businesses are manufacturing and selling hand sanitizer to address this crisis – and it can be shipped to your home for a reasonable price.

Here are 16 companies where you can find hand sanitizers as of early May:

American Eagle: Merci Handy Hand Sanitizer – $3.95 for a 1-oz. bottle

(Merci Handy)

Bare Republic: Bare Hands Hand Sanitizer Spray – $6 for a 3.4-oz. bottle

(Bare Republic)

BioSilk: Moisturizing Hand Sanitizer – $4.99 to $49.50 for bottles between 2.2 oz. and 1 gallon

(BioSilk)

By Human Kind: Hand Sanitizer – $20 for an 8-oz. bottle

(By Human Kind)

CORONAVIRUS CAUSES SANITIZER SHORTAGE, PRICE GOUGING

CHI: Organic Gardens Moisturizing Hand Sanitizer – $5.74 to $34.23 for bottles between 2.2 oz. and 26 oz.

(CHI)

Faber Distilling Co.: Hand Sanitizer – $9.99 for a 19-oz. bottle

(Faber Distilling Co.)

Griffo Distillery: Hand Sanitizer – $58 for a 1-gallon bottle (normally retails for $128)

(Griffo Distillery)

Highline Wellness: CBD Hand Sanitizer – $7 for a 2-oz. bottle

(Highline Wellness)

EXPIRED HAND SANITIZER SENT TO SOME SENATE MEMBERS AMID CORONAVIRUS

Pipette: Hand Sanitizer – $4.99 for an 8-oz. bottle

(Pipette)

Public Goods: Hand Sanitizer – $2 for a 2-oz. bottle

(Public Goods)

Stream2Sea: Alcohol Hand Sanitizer – $5.99 to $24.95 for bottles between 16 oz. and 32 oz.

(Stream2Sea)

Ulta Beauty: Megababe Squeaky Clean Hand Sanitizer – $6 for a 2-oz. bottle

(Megababe)

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Urban Outfitters: Yoobi Hand Sanitizer – $25 for a pack of 50

(Yoobi)

Votivo: Fragrance Free Liquid Hand Sanitizer – $50 for a 1-gallon bottle

(Votivo)

Wellnesse: Moisturizing Hand Sanitizer – $10 for a 1.9-oz. bottle

(Wellnesse)

Zoya: Hand Sanitizer with Pump – $2.99 to $8.50 for bottles between 2 oz. and 8 oz.

(Zoya)

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say consumers should look for a hand sanitizer that has an alcohol content of at least 60 percent to combat infectious diseases such as the coronavirus.

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As an in-demand item during the coronavirus, hand sanitizer stock is likely to fluctuate daily.

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Archie Panjabi: I Get Why People Ask About Julianna Margulies Feud

Her lips are sealed. The Good Wife alum Archie Panjabi played coy when discussing her rumored feud with Julianna Margulies — but isn’t surprised that it’s still such a hot topic among fans.

The 47-year-old Emmy winner didn’t spill any secrets when a “naughty” New York Times reporter asked about behind-the-scenes tension on the CBS drama. After Panjabi’s and Margulies’ characters stopped sharing scenes together in the fourth season, fans were quick to assume that there was a real-life feud brewing between the two actresses.

“We are living in a world where everybody wants to know everything. I completely understand why everyone asks about it,” Panjabi admitted to the New York Times on Sunday, April 26. “Everybody I meet asks me about it in some roundabout way.”

Panjabi left The Good Wife in 2015 after the sixth season of the series. She and Margulies both addressed the feud rumors the following year, after it was revealed that the show used body doubles to reunite their two characters on screen. While the ER alum dismissed the allegations as “silly gossip,” Panjabi hinted that there was more to the story of her exit than her former costar was willing to admit.

“In terms of anything that happened on The Good Wife, I think it’s only respectful for it to stay on The Good Wife,” she said during a panel at the Television Critics Association’s press tour in Los Angeles in August 2016. “It was time for me, for many reasons, to unzip the boots and step into another show.”

Even other Good Wife stars don’t see the tension between Panjabi and Margulies dying down any time soon. When told that fans of the series were begging for a reunion, Alan Cumming teased that they shouldn’t get their hopes up. “Good luck with that,” he told Us Weekly at a June 2019 fundraiser for HIV/AIDS research.

Despite the alleged drama that happened off camera, Panjabi admitted that she still has a lot of love for the CBS series that made her the star she is today.

“Before Kalinda, I was always coming in for a few lines and it was hard to get roles,” she told the New York Times. “If people always want to know what happened, OK, it’s a small price to pay for all the wonderful things that show has given me. It sounds diplomatic, but it’s how I feel.”

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You Can Get A Set Of These Mugs For Less Than $30 Right Now

Chances are your Keurig has never seen as much action as it has in the past few weeks. You’ve probably whipped up enough caffeinated drinks to call yourself a barista, and now that your coffee-making skills are A1, you’re only missing one thing: a good set of mugs. Well, you’re going to want to check out the Mcwhorter 6 Piece Coffee Mug Set from Wayfair because even the queen would sip tea from these.

SHOP NOW

The McWhorter set is super-chic, and since they’re on sale, the price is just as appealing. The 16-ounce mugs are made with white porcelain, and each mug features a unique gold-plated design.

Sure, you can probably make-do with the old mugs in your kitchen, but these will instantly level up your morning coffee sessions and your kitchen decor (especially if you store them on a mug tree holder).

Countless reviews on Wayfair’s website are from people obsessed with design of these mugs.

“Another fine piece of art. Each one showcasing its’ beauty. Like “fine china” for me…luxurious!!!!,” wrote one customer.

“These coffee mugs are elegant and beautiful! Each design is intricate and different, which adds another layer of uniqueness. So happy with my purchase,” said another.

One reviewer said she even used the mugs as individual gift holders. That’s how pretty they are.

“Absolutely beautiful! They were used as adorable vases for me to make 6 individual gifts for family and friends.”

The mugs are 40 percent off at Wayfair, so you can get the whole set for just $28.99. But if you aren’t as obsessed with these mugs as I am, Wayfair has a ton of other options on sale right now. See for yourself.

Normand 4 Piece Teacup SetMint Pantrywayfair.com$21.99SHOP NOW

Aerne Coffee MugMint Pantrywayfair.com$27.99SHOP NOW

Connellsville Reactive Glaze Coffee MugFoundry Selectwayfair.com$35.99SHOP NOW

Oak Park Coffee MugZipcode Designwayfair.com$24.99SHOP NOW

You’re not giving your coffee-maker a break anytime soon, so go ahead and upgrade your mornings.

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People Can't Get Over How Weird Tony Stark and Wanda's Relationship Is in the MCU

Trying to recall the relationship between Iron Man and Scarlet Witch in the Marvel Cinematic Universe is no easy task. That’s not because their relationship is so strange – it’s that they barely have one. 

The two characters share the screen for probably less than five minutes across all the movies and haven’t spoken more than two or three lines to each other. That very fact has some Marvel fans puzzled, even to the point they look for any kind of interaction between Robert Downey Jr. and Elizabeth Olsen. 

What is the relationship between Iron Man and Scarlet Witch?

As in the comics, Wanda Maximoff started out as a villain in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Kind of. She and her brother Quicksilver were being held captive by what was left of Hydra, and they were forced to work against the Avengers.

Wanda’s first encounter with Tony is a big one, in that she implants a nightmare in his head that feeds off his PTSD about the New York attack in The Avengers, and that sets the whole plot in motion. 

Then they find themselves on opposite sides in Captain America Civil War, Wanda tells Tony, “You locked me in my room,” referring to the fact that Iron Man quarantined her after she accidentally killed people during a mission. And that’s pretty much it.

They have no scenes together in Infinity War or Endgame. Granted, she was one of the people who got snapped, so she was out of Endgame until the portals scene, and then she appeared at Tony’s funeral with his other comrades. 

There simply isn’t much meat on that bone, although it is interesting to note that in effect, Tony created Vision, with whom Wanda would fall in love, so Tony had a big impact on Wanda despite having such little contact with her in the movies.  So leave it to fans’ imaginations to fill in the gaps. 

How do fans remember the relationship between Wanda and Tony?

The person who started the Reddit thread went so far as to ask, “Do the actors hate each other and have a stipulation to never share a scene? I just find this whole thing odd, because he’s the very reason she got powers and ended up an Avenger in the first place, and he almost ruined her life again in Civil War.” 

Another fan responded, “I honestly don’t think there is any bad blood between the actors. I just think the writers didn’t prioritize their relationship. And honestly I have no problem with that cause there isn’t time to for Wanda to discuss her past with Tony.” That fan even posted this link to a photo of Downey and Olson looking quite chummy with each other. 

A Google search for Elizabeth Olsen and Robert Downey Jr. reveals some comments Olsen made where she talked about Tony’s ultimate fate: “It wasn’t even planned, but I believe [Jeremy] Renner took a knee first and then half the cast took a knee,” Olsen recalls. “It was a very powerful moment because you felt the weight of this franchise that [Downey Jr.] built and starred in. Now, we all get to be a part of something where he was the first.”

What is Wanda’s future in the MCU? 

Fans have often asked if there was some way Robert Downey Jr. could come back to Marvel despite Tony Stark’s death. It just so happens that Wanda’s reality-warping powers would be one of the few ways Downey could credibly make a return. There’s no indication that would happen, but Wanda stands to play an even more important part in the MCU’s Phase 4. 

This would happen not only through WandaVision, but also in the fact that she will reportedly play a pivotal role in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. How and when this will play out is a bigger mystery than usual because of the pandemic release date delays. 

WandaVision was originally slated for early 2021 then was moved up to late 2020. Now, production on that and all other Marvel shows has been halted, calling the 2020 time frame into question.

Multiverse of Madness got moved from July of 2021 to November of 2021, so WandaVision might have to move into 2021 as well. Marvel fans probably wish they had Scarlet Witch’s powers now. 

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'How to Get Away With Murder': Here's a Recap of Everyone Frank Delfino Murdered

With season 6 of How to Get Away With Murder wrapping up soon, it’s hard to remember all of the murders that everyone committed. Although Annalise Keating (Viola Davis) has the difficult job of covering up everyone’s deaths, Frank Delfino (Charlie Weber) is often the one getting his hands dirty. Let’s take a look at all of the murders Frank is responsible for over the past six seasons.

‘How to Get Away With Murder’ Season 1: Who killed Lila Stangard?

Although the pilot episode of How to Get Away With Murder opens with the murder of Sam Keating (Tom Verica), there was another murder before that one. Frank murdered Lila Stangard. However, it’s not all cut and dry. 

It turns out that Sam was cheating on Annalise with Lila. When Lila informed Sam that she was pregnant with his baby — that’s when Sam asked Frank to kill her. 

“You owe me,” Sam told Frank when he made the phone call. 

We found out later that Sam was referring to Frank’s involvement in the death of Sam and Annalise’s baby boy. 

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It's all in the details. #HTGAWM

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In ‘How to Get Away With Murder’ Season 3 Frank kills two more people

Throughout the six seasons that Frank is pretty much Annalise’s hitman, it is surprising that he doesn’t kill more people. In season 2, Bonnie Winterbottom (Liza Weil) was the one getting her hands dirty — with the death of Emily Sinclair (Sarah Burns). Of course, that one is also not cut and dry. Asher Millstone did run over Emily with his car before Bonnie covered it up by throwing Emily off a building.

In season 3, when Frank starts the season by killing the hitman that Annalise sent to track him down — Butchman. Frank is begging for forgiveness in the best way that he knows how. He can’t get Annalise to forgive him, so he works on Bonnie.

He pays a visit to Bonnie’s father, Robert Winterbottom, who is in jail. Frank poses as a guy named Kevin, who works at a prison in Coalport, Pennsylvania. There he finds Robert — who is serving time for his mistreatment of Bonnie as a child — and brutally murders him. In the next episode, Bonnie hugs Frank and thanks him for the gift. 

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Is it mutual? #HTGAWM

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In ‘How to Get Away With Murder’ Season 4 Frank’s rage gets the best of him

One of Laurel Castillo’s (Karla Souza) father’s hitmen, Dominic Flores (Nicholas Gonzalez), visits Caplan and Gold to find out what information was taken off of the hard drive. Meanwhile, we find out from Laurel that Dominic told her not to go through with the plan to take down her father. 

After Dominic is spotted attempting to track down Oliver Hampton (Conrad Ricamora), Frank quickly captures him. While tied up, Dominic confesses his love for Laurel. The hitman goes too far, taunting Frank about Laurel. We find out in the next scene that Frank killed him in a fit of rage, ruining Laurel’s hope of using him to get to her father and newborn baby.

Although it seems like he murdered more people throughout the six seasons, Frank is only directly responsible for the murder of four people. Find out if that number changes with the last few episodes of How to Get Away With Murder Thursdays at 10 p.m. EST on ABC.

Read more: ‘How to Get Away With Murder’: Will Laurel Castillo — Karla Souza — Return in the Final Episodes?

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How can I get tested for coronavirus in UK? – The Sun

THERE have been a few major set backs in the Government's plans for large scale testing, but the country is inching closer to finding reliable kits.

A new antibody testing kit could be out as soon as May. So how do you get tested?

⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates

How do I get tested for coronavirus in the UK?

Since spending millions of pounds on testing, the Government is lagging behind its targets.

Antibody test kits were ordered in the millions in the hopes they could be released to the general public.

But none of the kits so far have been accurate enough to be relied upon to give information about immunity and the scale of the spread.

One test kit got the wrong answer in 75 per cent of swabs.

Another was right 95 per cent of the time – but still wasn't good enough for Government checks.

But we might now be "weeks away" from getting accurate tests after a few breakthroughs – including one from the UK's biggest biochemical firm, Roche.

Antibody tests can tell if you have had the virus in the past – but not if you have it when you take the test because it can take weeks for antibodies to develop.

At the moment only key workers, such as NHS staff, care staff, police and firefighters, with symptoms the virus are being tested.

Their household can also get tested if anyone is showing symptoms.

Otherwise only coronavirus patients who are hospitalised with symptoms are being tested.

I'm self-isolating at home, can I get tested?

At the moment there are no testing kits available for general home use.

Public Health England said a small number of tests will be trialled in a laboratory before being distributed by Boots and Amazon, but that will rely on having working tests.

It is not yet known when the tests will be available, however, if the Roche tests work, they could be available as soon as May.

The price of the kit is currently unknown, however, it would be wise for it to be affordable to ensure as many Brits as possible can purchase it.

Professor Sharon Peacock, from the National Infection Service, said they will be sold for a small fee or given away free of charge.

Chief Scientific Adviser Sir Patrick Vallance said that the Government was prioritising ensuring that tests are accurate over rolling them out quickly.

He said: “That is so important that if it means a delay to get there, that delay is worth having."

At the moment, to qualify for testing in hospital you will need to be showing at least two symptoms of coronavirus and be in a relatively severe stage before you will be admitted.

If you believe that you have symptoms, please check online first and call 111 to get advice before leaving your home.

Are NHS staff being tested for coronavirus?

NHS staff are not currently being tested for coronavirus unless they show key symptoms.

Many who have already been tested are now being re-tested due to the unreliable tests.

Things have been given a boost now though, with mobile testing units being deployed across the country to try and get 100,000 frontline workers tested.

These are antigen tests, also known as swab tests, that will show if you have it now, but not if you've had it before.

Ministers will now deploy 48 trucks to Covid-19 hotspots closer to homes in a bid to hit their target of 100,000 tests a day by the end of the month.

If medics aren't tested, they could be unwittingly transferring the disease to their patients and other clinicians as well as their families.

As many as 85 per cent of NHS staff off sick may not even have the bug, experts say – and are being kept away from hospitals because of a failure to speed up testing rates.

Accurate antigen tests would allow quick testing to ensure that NHS staff are safe, and help differentiate a common symptom from Covid-19 allowing them to return to work instead of having to self-isolate for weeks.

What are antigen and antibody tests and who can have one?

Antigen kits test for the virus in your system and can only tell if you are sick with it at the point you take the test.

Antibody kits can test people to see if they have had the virus – because your body will develop antibodies from coronavirus that will stay in your system weeks and months after you have had the virus.

They cannot tell if you have the virus right now.

Scientists in Oxford got "mixed results" from the first week of testing the latest tests, but the new test from Roche looks promising.

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The NHS and other key workers will be prioritised as it is essential that they remain active if possible, but test kits will be made available to everyone else as soon as possible.

Knowing how many people had had the virus would help the Government to model its spread and to estimate the proportion of the population that is currently immune.

Government advisers have said that the antibody tests will be a key step in slowing the outbreak and getting the country back to normal.

How do the antibody tests work?

Dr Hilary Jones, a GP and resident doctor on Good Morning Britain, explained that it's "almost like a pregnancy test, except you need a drop of blood".

Antibody tests show who has already had coronavirus and is therefore immune.

Tests vary, but will principally be the same as any other blood test, from the fingerprick test you you get just before you give blood, to a vail taken by a GP.

The new Roche test, for example, would be taken using a blood sample, which would then be sent to a laboratory and could give the results in 18 minutes.

The company is working with governments across the world to deliver the kits, and is aiming to increase “monthly production to high double-digit million tests by June”.

Recent efforts to produce antibody tests have been plagued by inaccurate results.

What is the current coronavirus test?

Testing for coronavirus looks for signs of infection in blood, other bodily fluids or secretions.

There are a number of ways the virus can be tested.

  • Blood – this involves the collection of a blood sample from a blood vessel in your arm.
  • Nasal – this is when a saline is inserted into the nose and removed with gentle suction.
  • Sputum – this involves the patient coughing up mucus from the lungs into a cup or a swab used to take mucus from the nose.
  • Tracheal aspirate – this requires a thin lighted tube inserted into the mouth and down the lungs, where a sample will be collected.

Testing for the virus comes with some minor side effects, including tingling and slight discomfort. These however, are temporary.

 

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