Positive coronavirus stories – NHS deliveries and balcony weddings – Monday 23 March 

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

Members of the Henry Reeve medical brigade in Cuba
Members of the Henry Reeve medical brigade in Cuba have travelled to Italy to fight Covid-19 Credit: Ariel Ley Royero/Shutterstock
  • A brigade of doctors and nurses from Cuba have flown to Italy this weekend to help fight coronavirus – Italy is now the centre of the global crisis. It’s not the first time Cuba has been part of a global medical response, since 1959 it’s sent six groups of “armies of white robes” to tackle diseases abroad. The Cubans were applauded on arrival.  
  • Factories across the UK have converted their production lines to produce thousands more ventilators for the NHS. The McLaren F1 team, Coventry-based RDM Automotive, and vacuum manufacturer GTech have all switched their focus to ventilators. As of this morning, Heath Secretary Matt Hancock said the NHS now has 12,000 ventilators, up from 5,000. It’s thought the NHS needs at least 30,000.  
  • The UK Army is being brought in to distribute masks and protective suits to frontline NHS staff. NHS England has said “millions more items of personal protective equipment” have been delivered to NHS services over the last few days.   
  • Mainland China saw a drop in its daily tally of new coronavirus cases yesterday – there were also no new locally transmitted infections. In Wuhan residents were told they could return to work if they didn’t have a temperature and presented a green health code (which marks their virus-free status).  
  • Brazil's top football clubs are handing over their stadiums to allow health authorities to turn them into field hospitals and clinics to fight the coronavirus pandemic. "In this grim moment, I wanted to invite our great Red and Black nation to renew hope and work for better days. Let us take care of our elders, help those who need it most,"  said Rodolfo Landim, the club president of South American champions Flamengo.  
  • Wedding ceremonies are being held on balconies, out of windows and online around the world. Amanda Wheeler and Reilley Jennings were married on the streets of Manhatten by their friend who officiated from his window five stories up. A couple said – shouted – their vows on their balcony in Madrid. And here one man even asked a woman for a date via his drone.        

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