The first vaccine jab does not protect the cancer patients fully. Students return to schools in Northern Ireland schools discussed. Have a look at the key updates of coronavirus.

Students return to schools in Northern Ireland to be discussed – The Northern Ireland Executive is said to discuss when all children should return to school. Education Minister Peter Weir desires all pupils in Northern Ireland back in classrooms by 12 April, and is suggesting all remaining primary school pupils (primaries four to seven) who have yet to return should start on 22 March. Earlier department of Health advisers warned against a full return of schools.

Cancer patients ‘less protected’ after the initial jab – Cancer patients are seemingly less protected against Covid-19 than other people after the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine, a study reveals. Nevertheless, it suggest s that their immune response was greatly enhaced by a second jab after three weeks, as endorsed before the government stretched the gap to 12 weeks to give some protection to greater numbers more rapidly. Senior study author Dr Sheeba Irshad, from King’s College London, remarks the “really worrying” findings should ask for an urgent review, although Cancer Research UK says the study is still to be reviewed and patients should continue to follow GPs’ advice.

Shop owners don’t have clarity over reopening – Shop owners remark that they are being “treated like children” with no detail about when non-essential shops in Wales can reopen. Ministers are expected to meet on Friday for a lockdown review. However, Lucy Hywel, secretar ,Y Fenni Business Community in Abergavenny, Monmouthshire, shares with 5 live,  “We’re days away from possibly opening and we have no idea whether we’re going to, or not.” The Welsh government pronounces it cannot provide as much certainty as it would like.

Youth finding things much more demanding – Young people have had to manage with anxiety over schoolwork. What worsened is the limit on their social lives and contact with friends. This is further showing an impact on their mental health.

Areas being tested for new variants – People over 16 are being requested to take tests for the Brazilian variant  to ensure whether or not they have symptoms if they reside or work in:

  • Parts of the BS32 and BS34 postcode areas in South Gloucestershire, near Bristol
  • London Borough of Wandsworth (parts of SW11 and SW15 postcode areas)
  • London Borough of Lambeth (parts of the SW8 and SW9 postcode areas)
  • London Borough of Brent (specific areas within North Wembley)
  • London Borough of Croydon (parts of the CR0 postcode and areas within South Norwood and Thornton Heath)
  • London Borough of Barnet (parts of N2 and NW4)
  • London Borough of Redbridge (Loxford and Clementswood wards)
  • The Stafford district in Staffordshire

Local experts in these zones are providing tests for people without symptoms through additional home testing kits and mobile testing sites.

However, those in the affected locations who have Covid symptoms are required to apply for a test in the normal way.

A lot of other zones across England have previously finished surge tests.

The Brazilian variant strain does not apparently cause more grave illness in the majority of people. But, it is assumed to spread more easily and that the vaccines may be not effective against it.