Asthma and coronavirus — what are the risks?

Saudi Arabia Partially Lifts Restrictions, Keeps Mecca Curfew

Saudi Arabia joined nations around the world in gradually loosing restrictions that were put in place to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

The kingdom partially lifted a 24-hour curfew in all regions except Mecca and will allow resumption of some commercial and economic activities, state-run Saudi Press Agency reported.

  • Curfew lifted from April 26 to May 13 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    • 24-hour curfew will be enforced in Mecca city and the some previously isolated districts.

    New York starts antibody testing for front-line medical workers

    With coronavirus hospitalisations falling, the New York state turns its attention to antibody testing.

    The US state of New York has begun antibody tests for front-line healthcare workers.

    The screening programme will examine whether doctors and nurses working with infected patients have been contracting COVID-19 without showing any symptoms.

    Al Jazeera’s Heidi Zhou-Castro reports from Silver Spring, Maryland.

    931 new coronavirus cases in Singapore, of which 15 are Singaporeans and PRs

    SINGAPORE – The Health Ministry (MOH) confirmed 931 new cases of Covid-19 in Singapore as of noon on Sunday (April 26).

    The vast majority of these cases were work permit holders in foreign worker dormitories.

    Singaporeans and permanent residents made up 15 of the new cases.

    More updates will be provided later on Sunday, said the ministry.

    Coronavirus: Philippines death toll tops 500

    MANILA (REUTERS) – The Philippines Health Ministry on Sunday (April 26) reported seven more fatalities due to the novel coronavirus outbreak, taking the death toll in the South-east Asian country to 501.

    It recorded 285 new cases, bringing the country’s total number of confirmed infections to 7,579.

    A total of 862 patients have recovered.

    Malaysia reports 38 new coronavirus cases, no new deaths

    KUALA LUMPUR (REUTERS) – Malaysia reported 38 new coronavirus cases on Sunday (April 26) with no new deaths, Datuk Seri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah, the secretary-general of Malaysia’s Ministry of Health, told reporters at a news conference.

    It has so far recorded a total of 5,780 infections, with 98 fatalities.

    Indonesia reports 275 new coronavirus cases, 23 more deaths

    JAKARTA (REUTERS) – Indonesia reported on Sunday (April 26) 275 new coronavirus cases, raising the total to 8,882, data provided by health ministry official Achmad Yurianto showed.

    The data showed 23 people who tested positive for the virus died, raising the total deaths to 743.

    Zimbabwe food crisis worsens with COVID-19 lockdown extension

    Concerns in Zimbabwe that a lockdown extension will worsen a food crisis already affecting half the population.

    Zimbabwe has had to extend its nationwide lockdown because of a rise in coronavirus cases.

    But the restrictions have come at a cost, raising concerns that a food crisis affecting half the population will get worse.

    Al Jazeera’s Haru Mutasa reports from Norton, Zimbabwe.

    Bandit in PPE Skates Off After Dunkin’ Donuts Stickup

    Hicksville, N.Y. (AP) — A robber wearing in-line skates skated off into the night after sticking up a Dunkin’ Donuts on Long Island, police said.

    Nassau County police said the suspect glided into the Hicksville shop around 7:50 p.m. Friday, bought a cup of coffee and then demanded cash while making it seem like he had a gun under his clothing.

    The man got away with an undetermined amount of money and was last seen heading in the direction of a Long Island Rail Road station a few blocks away, police said. The Dunkin’ Donuts clerk wasn’t hurt.

    Along with the skates, the suspect was described as wearing a brown Carhartt jacket, blue sweatpants, red beanie cap and — in light of the coronavirus crisis — surgical mask, black rubber gloves, police said.

    No arrests have been made.

    Swiss ‘Crypto Valley’ In Talks for More Financing Help

    The finance official for Switzerland’s “crypto valley” near Zurich is in talks with the federal government about setting up a 100 million Swiss franc ($102.7 million) fund, newspaper SonntagsZeitung reported citing an interview.

    The fund would consist of private investments, contributions from local governments and federal guarantees, Cantonal Finance Director Heinz Taennler was quoted as saying.

    Bitcoin and blockchain firms are fighting for their survival as private equity investors pull out funding. Of the biggest 50 companies operating in the region, only half said in a survey that they will make it through the next 12 months under current conditions, according to the paper.

    The Swiss governmentannounced earlier this week that it will provide 154 million francs in credit guarantees for startups, but this will prove insufficient, Taennler said.

    Read more: Zurich’s Bankers Make Way for Techies and Bitcoin Startups

    Iraqi TV show producers hope to provide comfort for Ramadan

    Wilayat Batikh, a popular Iraqi sketch comedy show, continues filming episodes for Ramadan during COVID-19 lockdown.

    Watching TV is a popular pastime during the holy month of Ramadan, and Iraq is no exception.

    It is perhaps the only custom that has remained unaffected by the curfew imposed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

    And that has raised the stakes for those producing the shows.

    Al Jazeera’s Simona Foltyn reports from Baghdad, Iraq.

    Asthma and coronavirus — what are the risks?

    The outbreak of novel coronavirus – a virus that causes respiratory symptoms – has a lot of Canadians with asthma worried.

    Asthma is already a disease that can cause trouble breathing, and catching the virus could make things worse, experts warn.