Coronavirus live blog as it happened: latest as Chancellor unveils support package for self-employed

Follow the latest updates on the coronavirus outbreak in our live blog below

Thursday, 26th March 2020, 7:58 am
Updated Thursday, 26th March 2020, 7:19 pm

Scroll down and read our coronavirus live blog as it happens.

Before you do that here are some articles offering practical advice:

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Police Office and National Rail Staff are seen at an empty Waterloo Station in London (Photo: Alex Davidson/Getty Images)
(Image: WHO)

We will be providing live updates until 7pm this evening.

Coronavirus live blog, March 25

Last updated: Thursday, 26 March, 2020, 17:12

  • Financial support for the self-employed set to be unveiled
  • Number of UK deaths rises to 578 from 9,500 confirmed cases
  • Cases in the US jump once again, but New York state says hospital admissions are 'slowing'

Call for help in battle against misinformation

MPs are calling for social media users to pass on examples of coronavirus misinformation they discover online.

Social media firms will be called in to Parliament after the extended Easter recess to explain what they are doing to combat the spread of false information.

Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee chairman Julian Knight said: "The deliberate spreading of false information about Covid-19 could have serious consequences.

"Much of this is happening on social media through private channels, putting the onus on friends and family to identify whether the information they are seeing is misleading.

"There have been some shocking examples in recent weeks and we want people to send us what they've come across.

"We will call in social media companies as soon as the House returns to explain what they're doing to deal with harmful content like this to help give people the reassurances they need at this difficult time.

"Tech giants who allow this to proliferate on their platforms are morally responsible for tackling disinformation and should face penalties if they don't."

Checkpoints to be setup in Yorkshire to prevent non-essential travel

North Yorkshire Police said it will use checkpoints to stop vehicles and ask drivers if their journey is essential.

Officers will ask motorists where they are going, why they are going there, and reminding them of the message to stay at home, protect the NHS and save lives.

Assistant Chief Constable Mike Walker, said: "The new and significant restrictions announced by the Prime Minister on Monday evening spell out very clearly what each and every one of us must do to save lives. The message is clear and the warning stark. Stay at home, save lives.

"These are the lives of the people we know and love. Our partners, mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, children, grandparents.

"You may never be in such a position again where your simple actions will lead directly to saving lives."

The force said the checkpoints will be unannounced and could appear anywhere any time.

Public encouraged to clap for the NHS tonight

The Bank of England have decided to keep interest rates steady at a scheduled meeting, after twice slashing its rate down to an eventual 0.1% in recent weeks.

Earlier this month, the Bank cut its rate to 0.25% from 0.75%, just days before a second reduction to 0.1%, as the coronavirus crisis gripped the economy.

Simple tips on protecting your mental health

Gold medalist provides fitness tips

Joe Wicks has been keeping that nation's children fit with his daily PE classes - and now 5-time Olympic medalist has provided some expert tips. 

As many as 50,000 with coronavirus in Scotland

Scotland chief Medical Officer Dr Catherine Calderwood has said that as many as 50,000 people in Scotland could be infected with coronavirus

The claim came after it was revealed that there ar 894 confirmed cases of coronavirus in Scotland, a figure which Dr Calderwood described as a "very significant underestimate

WHO advises those in lockdown to avoid alcohol

WHO experts have advised that alcohol is an "unhelpful coping strategy" to combat stress during the coronavirus lockdown

Experts acknowledged that feeling stressed, anxious, fearful and lonely is "natural" at this time.

But they reminded people that using substances such as alcohol "will not help to manage the stress of self-isolation".

Government endorse 8pm applause for NHS

Shoppers observing social distancing

Assistant editor (news) for The Scotsman, Scotland on Sunday and Evening News Alan Young took this picture of shoppers observing social distancing rules in Scotland's capital city.

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