Positive coronavirus stories – Sunday 22 March

As coronavirus spreads across the globe, so do positive stories of vaccines, treatments, survivors and communities rallying together

Premium
Positive coronavirus stories – Sunday 22 March
A parishioner at Our Lady and St Nicholas in Liverpool tunes in to the Most Rev Justin Welby for the Church of England’s first virtual Sunday service Credit: PA
  • The Archbishop of Canterbury has conducted the Church of England’s first virtual Sunday service  broadcast online and on the radio  after churches were closed to public worship. The Most Rev Justin Welby’s service, which called on people to care for others “in person or virtually”, was praised by the Reverend Richard Coles as “just right”.
  • Jack Ma, the billionaire founder of the Chinese technology company Alibaba, pledged on Saturday to donate emergency supplies including 1.8 million masks, 210,000 test kits and 36,000 protective suits to Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Cambodia and other Asian countries.
  • United States vice president Mike Pence and his wife Karen Pence tested negative for Covid-19 on Saturday after a staff member at Mr Pence’s office had tested positive for the virus. 
  • In Italy, more than 7,000 doctors of all ages have responded to the government’s call for help to create a special task force that will help hospitals face the coronavirus. Italy’s minister for regional affairs, Francesco Boccia, said “we have been literally overwhelmed by the best of Italy”.
  • Rival football clubs Manchester City and Manchester United have come together to donate £100,000 to The Trussell Trust. The charity will use the £50,000 from each club to boost its 19 food banks in Greater Manchester. Fans' groups at Liverpool and Everton also pledged £3,000 to the fund.
  • In other football-related good news, this time in Germany, Bayern Munich forward Robert Lewandowski and his wife Anna have donated €1 million to the We Kick Corona fund to fight the coronavirus. The fund was created by his Bayern team-mates Leon Goretzka and Joshua Kimmich.
  • In the United States, those wondering whether they have Covid-19 can now ask Siri, Apple’s voice assistant. They can ask questions like “Hey Siri, do I have the coronavirus?” before being taken through a questionnaire and offered advice. In the UK, the assistant will direct users to the government’s website. 
  • The NHS has made a deal with private hospitals to acquire an extra eight thousand beds, almost 1,200 ventilators and nearly 20,000 fully qualified staff to fight the virus. The extra resources, which will see the private sector move almost its entire national hospital capacity to the NHS, will also help the health service deliver other urgent treatments.
  • Finally, the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has authorised the use of the first rapid diagnostic test that could detect Covid-19 in around 45 minutes. The tests will be available in a week.

For more positive news stories, sign up to our weekly Bright Side newsletter.