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NHS doctor reveals reality of fighting coronavirus on front-line from ventilators running out to drunks adding to strain – The Sun

AN NHS doctor today lays bare the reality of life working on the front-line in the battle against coronavirus.

In a special seven-day diary, the A&E medic at a hospital in the North East describes how the NHS is on a “war footing”.

⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates

He slams the Government for leaving doctors and nurses as “sitting ducks” by not giving them proper protective gear.

And the medic, who wants to remain anonymous, fears ventilators could run out and says drunken revellers add to strain on the overstretched service.

Yet, as he warns the scale of this once-in-a-generation crisis is growing day by day, he says our amazing NHS workers are determined to beat it.

SUNDAY, MARCH 15

ARRIVE to find builders constructing a new hospital within the hospital, just to deal with Covid-19. It stops me dead.

If we were under any illusion as to how big this thing will get, we aren’t any longer.

I’ve been taken off my usual job to help the teams battling coronavirus. We know our rotas will be redundant soon.

Everyone is focused on the same thing. Stopping deaths from the virus.

I’m based on A&E where, as well as dealing with the usual cases, we get patients turning up saying they have Covid-19.

Our intensive care colleagues say most patients being treated at the moment are elderly with underlying health problems.

But word from other trusts is those coming in are getting younger. One had a 40-year-old patient. Frightening.

One hour into my shift and I realise we need more testing in the community. Dozens arrive fearing they have the virus.

One, a first-time mum, is cradling her bump. She is terrified she has got it but she’s showing no obvious signs so we send her home. It’s so hard but what can we do?

MONDAY

PENSIONER rushed in on a stretcher is taken straight to ICU. She was on oxygen and gasping for breath. The fear on her face is matched by that of her family following behind.

Paramedic says she’d been complaining of feeling worse and worse for days but the advice from 111 was to keep isolating at home.

For now we have ventilators and can stabilise her breathing. We think she will be OK. Thank God.

I think of all the elderly people who don’t have a family to keep an eye out for them.

7

How many will die in the days, weeks, months ahead?

Lots more activity in the hospital today. Areas of the intensive care unit are being cleared to make extra room. Operating theatres are being allocated as overflow areas for patients with

Covid-19. Work is going on everywhere to make the place spotless.

One of our team who was in the Army says the measures are the same as you’d see when constructing a field hospital. We know that soon we’ll be at war with the virus.

After my shift, I catch Boris Johnson’s announcement that we are effectively starting a national lockdown. “At last,” I say to myself. But I can’t help thinking, is it too late?

TUESDAY

A&E is increasingly becoming a drop-off zone for the angry and confused. Dozens arrive asking to be tested.

But unless they are showing signs of the illness they won’t be. Many claim they have a temperature. We check. If it’s normal, we have to send them home. A lot say they can’t get through to 111. Others say their GP surgery has closed for visits. I don’t get that.

It’s obvious we need much more testing in the community. That way, we can get people to self-isolate rather than angrily wandering around potentially infecting others.

The masks which myself and colleagues are being given to wear during this pandemic are a disgrace. We’re fighting the planet’s deadliest virus with a piece of tissue paper covering our mouths. It’s a joke.

Everyone working here is becoming increasingly scared about it.

It’s being reported today that the Chancellor will hand out billions to keep the economy afloat.

Maybe he could start by giving us the proper equipment to keep us safe. We feel like sitting ducks.

Our family and friends are worried sick.

I’ve become obsessed with keeping clean. Before I step back inside my front door at night, I clean my shoes in a bucket of water. Then I have a shower before I even speak to my family. I am terrified of passing the virus on.

WEDNESDAY

ON a late tonight and spent most of the shift dealing with drunks in A&E.

Stitched up three blokes who had been fighting. When they arrived, part of me wanted to shake them.

Either that or wheel them to ICU where patients are fighting for their lives.

When I am out and about, I still see people in bars, pubs and queueing for nightclubs. It is madness.

They should be closed down: now! It’s really selfish.

When is the country going to start taking this virus seriously and stay at home?

Many of my colleagues are also coming under pressure from their families to self-isolate. They know the heightened chances of us getting it.

It’s so hard for the families of NHS workers.

THURSDAY

SEVERAL new patients showing signs of the virus are admitted today. One is a long-time heavy smoker aged 50.

His breathing is all over the place. He says he feels as weak now as he did when he was recovering from cancer two years ago. We will definitely need to keep him in. He will need a ventilator to help stabilise him. I call up to ICU. Thankfully we can admit him.

At the moment we have enough ventilators but rumours are spreading about problems nationwide.

Colleagues in London are getting so overwhelmed they can’t ventilate patients and are having to transfer them.

If we are at that stage already, it is terrifying. Some colleagues have heard that we may start to run short of ventilators in May. That’s only weeks away. We need more now.

For now, my hospital is holding up well and the way everyone is pulling together is inspiring.

I’ve never been prouder to work in the NHS. But how long can we cope with a virus that is growing so fast?

Everyone has seen the pictures of the temporary morgues and Italy’s crowded hospitals where doctors are collapsing with exhaustion. No one dares to say it, but we know we could be facing that one day.

FRIDAY

THERE are hidden heroes in this fight against Covid-19 — hospital cleaners. No one mentions them on TV and you won’t see their faces in the newspapers but without them this hospital would fall apart.

Everywhere I look there is a cleaner mopping, scrubbing and spraying. Many are working overtime for no extra money.

One or two should have retired long ago and should probably be self-isolating soon due to their age. But they are proud of their role and carry on despite the huge risks that come with the job they do. Like us, they have flimsy paper masks. If they all got infected, the virus would take control.

The spread of the virus has led to a shake-up in the way we work. Emergency teams now effectively split into two — one half dealing with Covid-19 and the other “everything else”.

I help support a woman in her 60s with a serious underlying health condition. For people like her, coronavirus is a ticking time-bomb. Now it’s gone off.

Her husband holds her hand loosely, almost looking guilty for doing so. Her breathing is very erratic so she is put on a ventilator. Thankfully, we still have enough. The big problem with this disease is there’s no way to beat it. That makes NHS staff feel helpless.

We can operate to save someone, stitch a person up, reattach bits . . . but when this virus takes hold there is little we can do. That’s why for the majority it is much better to try to treat the symptoms at home.

YESTERDAY

TAKES me longer to get to work as the traffic outside supermarkets is insane.

Suddenly realise that I haven’t thought about shopping this week. Thank God my family and friends are making sure my fridge has food in it.

Heard a rumour this week that a patient tried to steal hand sanitiser from the toilets. Totally out of order but with the way some are panic-buying I am not that surprised.

Get to work and there are two people there whose bodies ache all over. The pair, in their mid-60s, can’t get their breath. They have no energy. It’s the soundtrack to the hospital now.

Apparently, colleagues in ICU are using X-rays to help diagnose the condition. It may help speed up the rate of diagnosis. A bit of good news, maybe?

Lots of locums in today — emergency staff parachuted in to plug gaps. The Government is advertising for retired staff to come back and it is clear we will need lots more staff in the weeks and months ahead.

Everyone is talking about the situation down in London. You can feel the tension in the air.

Doctors down there are already talking about the surge in cases and soon having to choose who lives and dies. I’ve never had to deal with a situation like that and, to be honest, I don’t know how I’d cope.

I’ve got friends who work in the capital and send a couple of them a text message in my break.

“How bad is it?”, I ask.

But I know the answer. And I know it is only a matter of time before this place is under siege as well.

I hear the ambulance sirens in the distance getting louder and louder and make my way back upstairs.

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World News

Documentary reveals how Putin rose to become Russia's mobster in chief

New Channel 4 documentary reveals troubling story of how Vladimir Putin rose to become Russia’s mobster in chief

  • Documentary reveals how ex-spy Vladamir Putin became President of Russia
  • Putin was posted to Dresden in East Germany in 1985 with his wife and daughter
  • He was offered job in President Yeltsin’s legal department when his ascent began

Short of stature and with a strangely expressionless face, Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin seemed the image of a boring bureaucrat when he was elected Russia’s third president 20 years ago. 

Yet today Putin has become the Godfather of a vast Mafia state – and to do that he has combined the dirty skills of a former spy with a close knowledge of Russia’s violent underworld, according to a new three-part documentary that starts tomorrow night on Channel 4. 

Putin: A Russian Spy Story shows how much of the Russian’s political career was informed by his time as a KGB officer in the late 1980s – and, later, as a fixer at the heart of corrupt local politics and the criminal underworld of St Petersburg. 

Over the past two decades, Putin has put everything he learned from his days as a spy and fixer into devastating practice. The rule of law in Russia has been rendered almost meaningless by his embrace of corruption and the killings of opponents

As Vladimir Kara-Murz, a leading opposition politician, says: ‘Putin’s background is the Soviet KGB – one of the most repressive organisations in the history of humanity. He’s doing what he was taught to do. Manipulate. Lie. Recruit. Repress. He seems quite good at his job.’ 

In 1985, Putin was posted to Dresden in East Germany along with his wife Lyudmila and their newborn daughter. 

His KGB duties are said to have been humdrum, involving assembling press reports and attending official dinners.

But the excitement was to come with the fall of the Berlin Wall and the subsequent collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.

After helping to destroy incriminating KGB documents, Putin drove back with his family to a more uncertain future in his home city, St Petersburg.

How, then, in just eight years, did this 39-year-old ex-spy become the Acting President of Russia? 

His KGB duties are said to have been humdrum, involving assembling press reports and attending official dinners. But the excitement was to come with the fall of the Berlin Wall and the subsequent collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991

The answer lies in Putin’s ability to act as a cunning middleman between the worlds of politics, money, and criminality.

Putin found St Petersburg in chaos, with bombings and contract killings a part of daily life. As one observer puts it, it was like Chicago in the 1930s – but far, far worse. 

He honed his skills as a power broker by acting as an adviser on international affairs to the corrupt mayor, Anatoly Sobchak, and as an intermediary between the city’s gangs, politicians, and what passed for its legal system. 

‘There was a cosy relationship between local democrats and gangsters,’ says Gleb Pavlovsky, a former political adviser to both Putin and Boris Yeltsin. 

‘People went easily from the mayor’s office to so-called ‘mob summits’.’ 

In 1996, Sobchak was voted out of office – which meant Putin was out of a job. 

The shock made him realise two things – that democracy hampered his activities, and his future no longer lay in his home city.

It was when he was offered a job in Moscow in the legal department of President Yeltsin that his extraordinary ascent began. 

He made himself indispensable and in July 1998, he was appointed head of the FSB – the successor to the KGB.

Putin would turn the FSB into an organisation that could be hired by any gangster, criminal or corrupt businessman. Doubtless, it made Putin rich, although he always presented himself as a modest man in his ill-fitting suits.

One of his sternest critics was one of his officers, a young man called Alexander Litvinenko, who complained: ‘We don’t want to kidnap people, carry out contract killings, and participate in all that.’

He is pictured above in 1983. Putin: A Russian Spy Story shows how much of the Russian’s political career was informed by his time as a KGB officer in the late 1980s – and, later, as a fixer at the heart of corrupt local politics and the criminal underworld of St Petersburg

Litvinenko would be killed by radioactive poisoning in London in 2006. Putin also used his position to produce ‘kompromat’ – compromising material – about Yeltsin’s enemies.

Yeltsin rewarded Putin by making him prime minister in August 1999. Within a few months, Putin became acting president when Yeltsin resigned on New Year’s Eve. 

Over the past two decades, Putin has put everything he learned from his days as a spy and fixer into devastating practice. The rule of law in Russia has been rendered almost meaningless by his embrace of corruption and the killings of opponents. 

He has established and enjoys the support of a network of some 1,000 very wealthy individuals who rely on him for their riches and status. After he came to power, Putin reflected on his future, saying: ‘I do believe some day I’ll have a future as a private citizen, that I… will live the life of a normal person.’ 

Such sentiments were clearly false. For this month, Putin announced he would approve changes to the constitution allowing him to remain in power until 2036.

Putin has always wanted to be a monarch – and now his power is as awesome as that of any Tsar. 

Putin: A Russian Spy Story starts tomorrow at 9pm on Channel 4.

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World News

Mum-of-two reveals her terror after ex strangled her until she passed out and smashed her head into TV – The Sun

A MUM-of-two has spoken of her terror after her ex-boyfriend strangled her until she passed out and smashed her head into a TV.

Lexi Nicholas, 37, was twice assaulted by Robert Marsh after their two-year relationship ended and he was convicted of actual bodily harm last month –  though he escaped a prison sentence.


Lexi, a mum of two young girls who runs a successful beauty therapy business, and Marsh got together after being friends.

At first Marsh, who worked away during the week, was never abusive and got on well with the family so Lexi had nothing to worry about.

Together, the family were even meant to be spending the Christmas of a lifetime in the Caribbean.

But things started to go downhill in May last year when she decided to breakup with him after he quit working and his attitude “massively changed”.

Lexi was first assaulted on October 27, 2019, when she was at home alone and a drunk Marsh started to make a commotion outside her door in the early hours of the morning.

He knocked my head through the TV

“The moment I opened that door he assaulted me instantly,” she told WalesOnline.

“He was just in an absolute blind rage. He knocked my head through the TV, punched holes in the doors and completely trashed the bedroom.

“I had managed to ring the police, I was downstairs in the play room on the phone, and he kicked the playroom door completely down – and it’s a fire door.

“He grabbed the phone, the police were advising him to leave and that’s when he snapped my phone.

“He threw a bottle of water all over me, punched me again, strangled me and that’s when the police arrived.

“He was dipping from hysterical to calm, to hysterical to calm. I wanted to get out of the house but he had taken my keys as well.”


Marsh was arrested and pleaded guilty to assault and criminal damage and was released on bail.

To Lexi he appeared genuinely remorseful and told her was struggling to come to terms with their break-up but three days before Christmas he assaulted her again.

“I went into Cardiff with my friends, he went in on his works do and when we were coming home he asked if we could share a taxi because he had some stuff here,” she said.

“He came in absolutely fine and that’s when it kicked off. He lost it again. He was refusing to leave, it was like someone had flipped a switch.

STRANGLED UNTIL PASSED OUT

“He demanded food, he was rooting through the cupboards. Then he assaulted me again. He strangled me until I passed out on the bottom of the stairs.”

Marsh was found guilty of ABH and was given a two-year community order and fined £590 as well being ordered to attend rehabilitation activity.

But for Lexi, a non-custodial sentence is not enough to give her peace of mind and she takes medication for her anxiety, while her kids are worried Marsh will turn up.

He motivation for speaking out about her own experience is fuelled her determination to raise awareness of Clare's Law.

Named in memory of 36-year-old Clare Wood, who was murdered by her boyfriend in 2009, it gives people the power to check whether a partner, family member or even next-door neighbour has any previous
convictions for violence.

“It should be in schools, there should be posters everywhere, it should be on social media but it’s not. I want women to come forward, to know it’s okay."

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New York Gov reveals most of state’s 10,300 cases are under age of 50 and requests 8 hospitals

NEW YORK'S governor Andrew Cuomo has warned young people that they are "not invincible" as 55 per cent of the state's coronavirus cases are aged 18-49.

Troops will be called to New York State to help fight the coronavirus pandemic after Donald Trump declared it a major disaster area.


Gov. Cuomo said today that the state has officially asked for four military field hospitals  – each with a capacity of 250 beds.

It also wants four Army Corps hospitals.

He tweeted: "Younger people listen up: 55 per cent of New York State coronavirus cases are ages 18-49.

"Young people aren't invincible. You can get this and you can give it to someone older you love.

"You shouldn't endanger other people's health."

The governor – who says he hasn't been tested for the killer bug – added that the state will be transporting 1.5million N-95 masks to New York City and Long Island today.

New York's boss hit out at President Donald Trump, saying: "There is no Dow Jones Index for social decline."

Gov. Cuomo tweeted too about the impact of the pandemic upon people's mental health, given the strain placed on those having to self-isolate, stay away from loved ones, or who are losing jobs as a result of Covid-19.

There is no Dow Jones Index for social decline.

He said: "Mental health is a vital part of public health.

"We're asking psychologists and therapists to pitch in and volunteer their services to help with New York's coronavirus response."

The politician also said that the state has tracked down 6,000 ventilators, which health chiefs intend to buy to help seriously ill people who end up in intensive care during the pandemic.

Hospitals have been considering re-deploying older ventilators, which still work but have been abandoned because they don't connect to modern electronic records systems.

The US has equipment to provide ventilation to about 160,000 people, according to research compiled by the Johns Hopkins Center for Health and Security.

The pandemic means that the hardest hit states now are urgently seeking more.

That includes New York state, which is looking to add to the roughly 5,000 to 6,000 it already has, a figure that Gov. Cuomo has said meets only a fifth of the potential demand.



New York State's Major Disaster Declaration – announced on Friday –  will unlock a full disaster relief fund which opens up access to $42billion in aid.

It also enables the Army to be called in to assist the state.

New York City mayor, Bill de Blasio, pleaded for the Army's intervention – following similar military assistance in Italy, Spain and Jordan – saying they have the "best logistical capacity".

The US Army Corps of Engineers intends to temporarily relocate to college dorms, hotels and sports centers to help provide additional hospital beds, reports the Daily Mail.

Mayor de Blasio said yesterday: "We constitute 30 per cent of the cases in the US and 70 per cent of the cases in New York State.

"Whether we like it or not, we are the epicenter."

He told MSNBC that there were now 4,000 cases across the five boroughs, while pleading for Trump to deploy federal military help.

De Blasio added: “If they got the order this hour to mobilize and get resources to the places in this country that are suffering, they would give it their all and they have the best logistical capacity of any organization in America."

His call is particularly urgent following revelations that the number of NYPD cops infected with Covid-19 has jumped from 20 to 35.

While none are seriously ill, Commissioner Dermot Shea warned "it's going to get worse".

And, shop owners fearing widespread looting in the wake of the coronavirus stay-at-home directives have begun boarding up premises.

Major disaster

Senate Minority Leader and New York Senator Charles Schumer said a major disaster declaration was approved by the federal government on Friday.

The announcement marks the first time in US history a major disaster has been declared due to a public health crisis.

Schumer said: “With more and more cases confirmed here each day, it’s imperative that the federal government does everything within its power to stem the spread of the deadly coronavirus.”

New York State has more than 7,100 confirmed coronavirus cases, and 46 deaths.

Senator Gillibrand called the approval an "essential step" in the COVID-19 battle.

She added: “All federal resources available must be used to help New York respond to the coronavirus outbreak.

"I’m glad the administration is taking the health and safety of New Yorkers seriously by releasing additional funding to help our state respond.”

Under the declaration, the federal government will pay for up to 75 per cent of the state's bills for its emergency response to the pandemic – and could even waive the bill altogether.

The announcement comes after New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo ordered all non-essential workers in the state to stay home.

More than one New Yorker died every hour in the city on Friday – with 14 coronavirus fatalities between just 10am and 6pm, the New York Post reported.

Dr. Oxiris Barbot, NYC Health Commissioner, warned that double-digit daily deaths could become the new normal in New York.

“I wouldn’t be surprised if we get to a day when we have double-digits new people dying every day,” she said at a City Hall press conference Friday afternoon.


De Blasio warned, too, that the city could run out of medical supplies in two weeks – as there are now at least 19,810 confirmed COVID-19 cases across America, with the total number of deaths past 249.

"We are now, whether we would like it or not, we are the epicenter," Mayor de Blasio said yesterday on CNN.

In just one day, US coronavirus cases jumped 4000, with New York, Washington State, and California being hit the hardest.

Other states that saw significant increases are Florida, New Jersey, Illinois, and Louisiana.

New York State now has the highest number of cases of any state in the country.

Illinois has joined New York and California in lockdowns to curb coronavirus spread,  limiting all residents to stay in their homes unless absolutely essential.

This goes into effect at 5pm on Saturday and will last until April 7, Governor J.B. Pritzker said.

Between New York, California and Illinois, more than 70 million residents are now being ordered to stay home amid the pandemic.

This accounts for more than 20 percent of the U.S. that is now under lockdown.

On Friday, in New York, Gov Cuomo ordered all barbershops, nail salons, tattoo parlors, piercing shops and other grooming services to be closed by 8pm Saturday due to the outbreak.

NYC Mayor de Blasio warned that the city's hospitals were just weeks away from not having enough crucial medical supplies to combat the novel coronavirus.

By April 3, NYC will need three million masks, 50 million surgical masks, and 15,000 ventilators, de Blasio explained.

The mayor said it would be imperative to have 25 million each of surgical gowns, coveralls, gloves, and face masks.

Full mobilization of the United States military is the "only way" those supplies can be provided in time, the Mayor added.


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Lifestyle

Astrologer reveals Prince William and Kate Middleton compatibility

Why Prince William and Kate Middleton are the perfect zodiac match: Princess Diana’s astrologer reveals how the Cambridges ‘feel at home with each other’ but have ‘enough differences to keep things interesting’

  • Princess Diana’s former astrologer told what she would think of the Cambridges
  • Debbie Frank said Prince William, 38, and Kate, 37, could create ‘solid family unit’
  • Pointed to signs the couple had ‘enough differences to keep things interesting’
  • Also said Kate has recently ‘experienced challenges’ and has had to ‘dig deep’
  • Meanwhile Prince William will ‘shift from an old cycle, into a new one’ this year

Princess Diana’s former astrologer has revealed how the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are a perfect zodiac match because they ‘feel at home with one another’ but also have ‘enough differences to make them interesting’.   

Debbie Frank said Kate Middleton, 37, was a ‘grounded’ Capricorn who could be ‘an anchor of emotional sensitivity’ for Prince William, 38. 

Writing in Hello magazine, Debbie revealed the Duke and Duchess are compatible on in a series of ways, explaining that there is ‘a unified force around Kate and William, enough differences to keep things interesting and enough shared values to build something long-lasting.’

She added that their signs indicated the couple would both feel a shift this year, with Prince William moving ‘into a new cycle’ and Kate being given ‘greater responsibilities’.  

Princess Diana’s former royal astrology has revealed how Prince William, 37, and Kate Middleton, 38, are compatible, but explained the pair have ‘enough differences to keep things interesting’

Speaking about the royal couple, Debbie revealed Kate’s sun sign is the opposite of Prince William’s.

She said opposite signs are ‘magnetically attracted’, with Kate’s Capricorn sign acting as an ‘anchor for the emotional sensitivity’ of Prince William’s Cancer sign.

Meanwhile she also said a Cancer sign would ‘instinctively know how to open up’ the ‘somewhat inhibited’ Capricorn. 

Debbie said the couple likely experienced a ‘hugely powerful attraction’ initially, but their relationships longevity had come from their compatibility elsewhere. 

Meanwhile Debbie added that  Prince William would see a ‘shift’ into a new cycle in the next year, while Kate would be given ‘greater responsibility’ 

She pointed to their ‘top traditional compatibility’ because of their moon signs, adding: ‘It means you feel at home with each other and have the potential to create a solid base and family unit.’

Debbie also explained how the couple ‘shared Mars’, a planet of motivation, and both worked in the same sign of Libra.

This means the couple were likely ‘completely attuned to one another’ and could be ‘non-competitive’ about their work. 

Meanwhile, she added that the couples individual astrology revealed they both faced further changes in the year ahead.

Debbie added that the upcoming changes in the next two years would give Kate ‘greater responsibilities’.

Debbie revealed how Kate  had recently faced  ‘challenging aspects’ which required her to ‘dig deep’ (pictured, at the Commonwealth Day Service earlier this month) 

Meanwhile she revealed that Kate had recently experienced ‘challenging aspects’ which required her to ‘dig deep’ and ‘discover the full extent of her personal resources’.  

Debbie also pointed to a solar eclipse on Prince William’s birthday as ‘shifting’ him from an old cycle and into a new one.   

Debbie met Princess Debbie, with whom she shared a close bond, through a mutual friend in 1989. 

While the Cambridges always have a busy schedule, they are more in the spotlight than ever after Harry and Meghan’s departure and Prince Andrew’s ‘retirement’, and will certainly be aware of the need to step up to support the Queen.  

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Celebrities

Amanda Bynes Reveals She's Pregnant After Reuniting With Fiancé Paul Michael

Amanda Bynes is pregnant and expecting her first child with her fiancé Paul Michael, who announced the news in several since-deleted Instagrams: a photo of himself and Amanda captioned “Baby in the making,” and an ultrasound photo with Amanda’s last name on the image.

Amanda also shared (and then deleted) the ultrasound image, which she captioned “Baby on board!” Meanwhile, a source confirms to Us Weekly, “Amanda is just barely pregnant and she is very happy.”

As a reminder, Amanda and Paul announced their engagement back on on Valentine’s Day, with Amanda hitting Instagram to say, “Engaged to tha love of my life.” She also shared a video introducing her fans to her fiancé, saying “Hey, everyone, this is Paul, my fiancé. I’m so lucky. As you can see, he’s drop-dead gorgeous. He’s also the best person on the face of the Earth.”

Just three weeks later, Amanda and Paul appeared to end their relationship, with Paul confirming the news to In Touch, saying “We did. I love her though, she’s my best friend.”

The couple then reunited almost immediately, at least judging from Amanda posting this on Instagram:

View this post on Instagram

My love 🖤

A post shared by Amanda Bynes (@amandabynesreal) on

Unclear what their exact relationship status is at this point, but wow—big news!


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Celebrities

Tom Sandoval Reveals His Best Pickup Line in ‘Candlelight Confessions’

Baring it all! Tom Sandoval revealed his best pickup line in the newest installment of Us Weekly’s Candlelight Confessions series.

The Vanderpump Rules star, 36, told Us exclusively on the Tuesday, March 17, episode of Candlelight Confessions that his go-to line to land a date has to do with breakfast.

“How do you like your eggs in the morning? Fertilized?” he jokingly said of his perfect opening lines when talking to a woman.

The Tom Tom co-owner also reflected on his high school prom and his “priest-looking collar” with a silver tie and wing-tipped shoes. “I danced my ass off,” Sandoval said about the night.

As for what fans might not know about his girlfriend, Ariana Madix? “She used to play piano,” the Missouri native revealed. “She was a championship cheerleader.”

When asked which celebrity he would switch places with, Sandoval took it literally, choosing Brad Pitt’s body. “I think I would take his body,” he admitted.

If he was the Once Upon a Time in Hollywood star, 56, for the day, Sandoval would “maybe send a text to Angelina [Jolie]” or “take my private jet [and] fly around the world.”

“I would dress up in full Fight Club gear and go out to bars just to f—k with people,” he added.

Watch the video above to see what other confessions the Bravo star spilled to Us about his tattoo and where he got it done in Las Vegas and which movie makes him cry whenever he watches it.

Check out a new episode of Candlelight Confessions every Tuesday at 3 p.m. for more celebrity secrets and revelations!

For access to all our exclusive celebrity videos and interviews – Subscribe on YouTube!

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Celebrities

Actor Brian Cox, 73, reveals he's 'concerned' about Coronavirus

‘I am concerned, but I’ve lived a few years’: Brian Cox, 73, believes social media has exacerbated coronavirus concerns because we’re ‘more aware’

Brian Cox has detailed his fears of the coronavirus and told how he believes the virus has attracted more attention than past pandemics because of social media.

The Succession star, 73, appeared on Thursday’s Good Morning Britain to discuss his new play Sinners, but talk quickly turned to global worries surrounding COVID-19.

The acclaimed actor spoke with hosts Ben Shephard and Susanna Reid about the pandemic, and claimed viruses such as SARS ‘didn’t get the same attention’. 

Worried: Brian Cox has detailed his fears of the coronavirus and told how he believes the virus has attracted more attention than past pandemics because of social media

After talking about his new play, Brian told how ‘without a question’ the coronavirus would affect theatres, but more so the larger venues with a bigger capacity.  

When asked if he was concerned about the disease as an actor, he replied: ‘I am concerned, but I’ve lived a few years. 

‘Of course, it’s a very very serious thing. But I think of it in this way, before social media, and when you think of the SARS virus and the viruses we’ve had previous, it didn’t get the same attention.

‘And some of those viruses were a lot more serious than this present one… I’m not a doctor so don’t quote me on this’

Discussion point: The Succession star, 73, appeared on Thursday’s Good Morning Britain to discuss his new play Sinners, but talk quickly turned to global worries surrounding COVID-19 

Susanna then intercepted, stating: ‘You mean in terms of the percentage of fatality, this is much more serious in terms of its spread and contagion.’

Brian then replied: ‘Yes, in terms of its spread, but we’re also more aware.’  

Meanwhile, the veteran actor, who plays Logan Roy in HBO drama Succession, revealed that he’s not too worried about how Coronavirus would affect filming for the new series, which begins at the end of April.

He simply said: ‘I’m supposed to leave on 21st so I may have to get my plane early.’

When Ben joked that the issue may not affect private jet travel, Brian added: ‘] Maybe HBO may come up with something like that!’ 

Discussion: Brian spoke with hosts Ben Shephard and Susanna Reid about the pandemic, and told how viruses such as SARS ‘didn’t get the same attention’

Opinion: ‘Of course, it’s a very very serious thing. But I think of it in this way, before social media, and when you think of the SARS virus and the viruses we’ve had previous, it didn’t get the same attention’

Elsewhere, last month left Phillip Schofield close to tears after he told the presenter he was ‘very proud’ of him, after he came out as gay in February.

The actor from Dundee appeared on the show to talk about his role in hit series Succession, when he stopped to congratulate the presenter on his revelation.

Brian, who has three children – one of whom is also an actor – said that Phil, 57, had done a ‘remarkable thing’ by coming out.

Actor: Meanwhile, the veteran actor, who plays Logan Roy in HBO drama Succession, revealed that he’s not too worried about how Coronavirus would affect filming for the new series, which begins at the end of April

Philip, who shares two children with his wife of 27 years, emotionally revealed his sexuality in a lengthy social media post this month, before speaking about his sexuality to co-host and friend Holly Willoughby, 39, on This Morning.

After finishing their interview, hosts Holly and Phillip thanked Brian and started to say their usual goodbyes, before the actor stopped Phil and said: ‘And by the way, well done.’

‘Thank you’, replied Phil.

Brian went on: ‘Really, really well done. I was very proud of what you did I thought that was a remarkable thing, I really did’

Moved: Elsewhere, last month left Phillip Schofield close to tears after he told the presenter he was ‘very proud’ of him, after he came out as gay in February 

A clearly moved Phil, said: ‘Thank you, you’re going to make me cry.’

Viewers were warmed by the moment, with one hailing Brian ‘lovely’ while another said Brian showed ‘utter class’ after the comments.

One tweeted: ‘Brian Cox making Phil cry on This Morning by being lovely’, while another said: ‘Isn’t Brian Cox just lovely.’

A third said: ‘What a lovely thing to say on This Morning. Utter class’.

Good Morning Britain continues weekdays from 6am on ITV.  

The actor from Dundee appeared on the show last month, where he congratulated the presenter on his revelation and said that Phil had done a ‘remarkable thing’ by coming out

Everything you need to know about coronavirus

By Natalie Rahhal, Acting US Health Editor for DailyMail.com  

HOW DANGEROUS IS CORONAVIRUS?

About 14 percent of people who contract the Covid-19 coronavirus are taken to hospital – with severe symptoms including breathing problems and pneumonia. About 5 per cent need intensive care.

But the majority who get the virus suffer nothing more than a cough and may never know they are infected.

So far, some 51,000 people around the world have already recovered from coronavirus – and that just includes the numbers who received a diagnosis. 

HOW MANY PEOPLE DIE?

Officially, the death rate so far has been just over three percent. But experts believe the true mortality rate is probably between one and two percent. This is because most mild cases have not been picked up by doctors or reflected in the official numbers – so the death rate is inflated. 

HOW DOES THIS COMPARE WITH OTHER DISEASES?

Seasonal flu kills roughly 0.1 percent of people. So Covid-19 is between 10 and 20 times more fatal.

But it is far less dangerous than SARS – the virus that ripped across China in 2003 – which killed 10 percent of patients.

BUT DOESN’T CORONAVIRUS SPREAD MORE EASILY?

Yes, but not dramatically. The best estimates suggest every person with Covid-19 passes it on to 2.6 people, on average. For flu that number is 1.5. 

CAN IT BE SPREAD WITHOUT SYMPTOMS?

Initially scientists feared carriers who had no symptoms could pass it on. That is now in doubt.

What is likely, however, is those who have mild symptoms are putting it down to a cold and going about their normal lives – which puts others at risk.

HOW LONG IS IT BEFORE SYMPTOMS APPEAR?

Again, unclear. Initially scientists said this could take up to two weeks.

But recent evidence suggests the incubation period could be as long as a month – particularly among children.

The average, however, is much shorter. A Chinese study said the average period of symptom onset was 5.4 days for adults and 6.5 for children. 

WHO IS AT RISK?

The virus can affect anyone – with a study of the first 41 infected people revealing two thirds did not suffer from any pre-existing condition. But the middle-aged are most likely to get it – 78 percent of those infected in China have been aged 30 to 69.

WHAT ABOUT THE OLD?

Only 3 percent of people infected so far have been over 80 – but if they get it they are more vulnerable. Analysis of 72,000 cases in China suggests for over-80s the death rate is 15 percent. For those in their 70s the death rate is 8 percent and for those in their 60s, 4 percent.

WHO ELSE IS VULNERABLE?

Those with other conditions – such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure and kidney problems – are likely to suffer severe complications if they become infected.

WHAT ABOUT CHILDREN?

Children seem to be low-risk. Less than 1 percent of the Chinese cases have been under the age of ten – and if children do get the virus it’s often a mild form.

They do, however, retain the virus for longer than adults.

A study last week found the virus was still present in the stools of some children for a month after they contracted it.

DOES GENDER MATTER?

Men are marginally more likely to get the virus than women. It is not clear why this is.

HOW DO DOCTORS TEST FOR COVID-19?

Anyone who has symptoms –particularly if they have travelled to an at-risk area – are told to call ahead to their health care provider, local emergency department or clinics.

This way, health care providers can be prepared, wearing masks, gloves and other personal protective equipment when they meet the possible patient and escort them to isolated areas of the facility.

They are tested using a cheek swab which is sent off for analysis at one of 12 Public Health England labs, a process that takes between 24 and 48 hours. Any positive test is double-checked at the main PHE lab in Colindale.

WHAT TREATMENT DO PATIENTS GET?

There is little doctors can do to tackle the virus, but they can treat the symptoms – such as fever and respiratory problems. Antivirals and antibiotics are also used, mainly to keep secondary problems at bay.

In the most serious cases patients are put on life-support equipment.

There are several clinical trials for potential coronavirus treatments ongoing worldwide, including one in Nebraska, where at least 13 patients are in quarantine, including two in biocontainment units. 

WHAT ABOUT A VACCINE?

Even though the Wuhan virus appeared only a few weeks ago, 20 teams around the world are already manufacturing vaccines.

Chinese authorities provided the DNA code for the virus early on in the outbreak, enabling scientists to get to work straight away.

At least 30 companies and research institutions in the US are racing to make a vaccine.

Last week, one of these companies, Moderna, shipped its candidate vaccine to the US, signalling the shot was ready to begin clinical trials.

Even so, US health authorities say it will likely be upwards of a year before a vaccine is actually ready.

 

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Cyrus Christie reveals all about suffering shocking racist abuse

‘When you are being sent an image of four black people hanging from a tree and nothing gets done, how do you feel?’: Fulham star Cyrus Christie on suffering shocking racist abuse and his tough upbringing in Coventry

  • Cyrus Christie revealed the shocking racist abuse he has suffered to Sportsmail
  • The star describes reporting racism but not hearing back from the authorities 
  • The Fulham full back also opened up about his tough upbringing in Coventry 
  • Christie supports a youth refugee programme and initiatives to aid mental health
  • He outlines his ambitions to set up an academy and also inspire young people 

When Cyrus Christie became a target for racist abuse while playing for the Republic of Ireland, he went to see the police.

‘They seemed like they would be great and gave me a number to call if I needed them,’ Christie told Sportsmail.

‘A while later I called it and it didn’t even work. We never heard from them again. It’s then that you realise there really is no point.’

Cyrus Christie has revealed the extent of shocking racist abuse he has suffered to Sportsmail

Christie, who plays for Fulham in the Championship, is so accustomed to racist harassment on social media that he picks and chooses what he reports. It is as though he has sliding scale in his head.

‘I have sat down many times and decided not to pursue something because nothing ever gets done,’ he shrugged.

‘When you are being sent an image of four black people hanging from a tree – representing my family – and nothing gets done, how do you feel?

‘Or when there is a petition calling for you to be lynched, how do you feel?

‘If it was the other way round, we know how quick it would be sorted. That’s the issue.’

At the start of the season, Christie’s sister complained she had been racially abused in the Fulham away end at Barnsley. Understandably, Christie went after that one, even though he knew it would bring him in to conflict with his club’s fans. Look beneath some of his Twitter posts now and some one-word replies remain. ‘Grass’.

The Fulham star is so accustomed to social media abuse that he now chooses what to report

A man was arrested after that incident but now the Crown Prosecution Service has dropped the case. It’s a blow but Christie refuses to miss a stride and Fulham may yet pursue a civil prosecution.

‘People are not sure about speaking up about racism because of the abuse that follows,’ he said.

‘But I won’t be like that. If you speak out you are branded a liar. They say you are soft, rising to the bait.

‘But I sat down with athletes at a Nike thing and listened to people’s stories. It is everywhere. A young girl, a footballer from Tottenham, said she had been racially abused.

‘But these athletes think they don’t have a big enough voice to speak out. So they don’t.’

Christie is a young black man from Coventry. He has witnessed racism almost from the day he was born. So he knows what it looks, sounds and feels like.

Despite his relatively low profile, his is becoming an important voice and he is exactly the kind of strong, intelligent individual the subject needs.

Christie is an important voice on racism after growing up a young black man in Coventry

Asked if the football authorities – or a body like Kick it Out – have ever been in touch, he laughed.

‘Hardly,’ he said. ‘It always takes the bigger voice to kick start something doesn’t it?

‘There is always more discrimination in the lower leagues but our voice isn’t as big as Raheem Sterling’s or Gary Neville’s.

‘Neville did a thing on racism on Sky and suddenly people think: ‘It must be true then’.

‘I have experienced many cases but you don’t hear from the FA or anyone. I think they know they should be doing a lot more.

‘It’s a tough job for people like Kick it Out. They don’t have the budget. But people like the FA are quicker to reach out to some people than others. That’s not right.’

Christie spoke last week in a classroom at the St Mary Magdalene School in Greenwich, East London. He was there to attend a Football Beyond Borders session with disadvantaged children.

FBB will help over 1000 children at 50 schools across the UK this academic year and is just one of many community initiatives Christie is involved with.

On Tuesday he is revealed by the EFL as the Championship’s PFA Player in the Community for this season. Given the list of charities he works with, it is hardly surprising.

The star is set to be revealed by the EFL as the Championship’s PFA Player in the Community 

In conjunction with Fulham, he has supported a youth refugee programme, initiatives to aid mental health and food bank collections. Outside of that, he works with FBB, Brixton soup kitchen and Carney Community Gym in Battersea. The latter is work he does in memory of his late uncle Errol, the former European Amateur middleweight champion.

Asked why he does quite so much, Christie jokes that it’s ‘better than sleeping in the afternoon’. But the truth is found in his upbringing in Coventry.

‘There were racial wars back then,’ he said.

‘My dad’s family were the only black people in the area and the skinheads used to come for them every day.

‘My school was sandwiched between two BNP areas. We would play football and people would monkey chant from their windows.

‘Lads would bring machetes to school. It was blacks against whites.

‘On my first day at school there was a crowd running at me and my friend. It was ‘get the blackie’. That was my friend as he was darker than me. We had to run.

‘I wouldn’t get served for an ice cream because I was black but there was real danger too, a few incidents where friends got stabbed. Maybe I was lucky.

Christie is heavily involved in community projects and also supports mental health initiatives 

‘We played 5-a-side and after a game one of the lads smashed a bottle and cut my mate from his eye to the corner of his mouth. Sliced his cheek right through. He needed plastic surgery.

‘People went out for retaliation the next day. Someone phoned and asked me to go but my nan wouldn’t let me. I was 14 and had homework.

‘I woke up the next day to the news that the guy who called me got stabbed 15 or 16 times. It was random, though. A completely different attack. Again, it could have been me.

‘A lot of people did die. I think about them all the time. In Coventry’s gang culture kids are still getting killed now.

‘I sit down with friends and family and try to find new ways to help kids. We have things in the pipeline.

‘Me and Callum Wilson [Bournemouth striker] want to set up an academy. We are not trying to find the next footballer or Anthony Joshua. We just want to help scared kids become better people and have a future.’

Christie made his debut for Coventry at 17. But it was on loan at Nuneaton several months later where he was racially abused for the first time in football. A senior team-mate referred to the colour of his skin and his manhood.

‘I had never met him before,’ Christie said. ‘I signed, turned up on the coach for a game and he just said it.

His future ambitions surround founding an academy with Bournemouth striker Callum Wilson

‘I wanted to fight him. I was more hot headed back then.

‘Does it still go on at that level? Maybe. There is a different mentality in non-league.

‘There will always be banter but there is a line you can’t cross. I had known that bloke for one minute. I hope he wouldn’t get away with it now but I don’t know…

‘Dressing room culture has changed but not as much as people think. It is still macho. A lot of players are too scared to speak.

‘You should be able to help each other. There should be someone there you can rely on.

‘A lad may be playing crap but he may have something going on at home.

‘It’s the same with the kids here. If you delve in to their background you will probably find something. They may not have food in their cupboards but they are embarrassed to say.

‘At the soup kitchen they do a discreet service as some people are too proud. People need to know they won’t be judged, in sport and in life.’

Recent controversies in football have not passed Christie by.

Christie has kept a close eye on recent controversies after Eric Dier confronted a supporter

Eric Dier jumped in to the crowd at Tottenham to confront a supporter while Jesse Lingard was racially abused after Manchester United’s game at Derby.

And then there is the case of Charlton’s Jonathan Leko who claimed he was not offered support from within football after being called a ‘n****r’ by Leeds goalkeeper Kiko Casilla.

The Kick it Out Group have since claimed they did contact Charlton but their message was not passed on.

Christie said: ‘That’s just incredible. It’s why people like Raheem [Sterling] feel they have to get involved.

‘We spoke to Twitter and their whole thing was about freedom of speech. We were wasting our time.

‘So you feel it will happen anyway and you have a choice either to ignore it or take things in to your own hands.

Raheem Sterling has aimed to raise awareness of racism amid concerns over a lack of support

‘Eric Dier had clearly just had enough. Footballers are human beings. Money doesn’t make you deaf or blind to abuse.

‘We have a right to stick up for ourselves but if we have a nibble back we are seen to be in the wrong. Some players will get sick of it soon so the authorities do need to do more.’

The FA, PFA and other football bodies are short of young minority figures in prominent positions.

‘There are certain players from previous generations who would be perfect,’ said Christie.

‘Look at Ian Wright. You put him in a job like that and he would be amazing wouldn’t he?

‘He didn’t turn pro ’til 24 and to achieve what he has is incredible and inspirational to young kids and players.

‘But only TV seem interested in him. Why?

‘It’s crazy that ex-footballers haven’t been given the high profile roles. You need people there who are visible.’

Christie has endured a tough season at Fulham but is a fan favourite due to his sheer desire

Christie is a remarkable young sportsman. Many do not know him now but surely one day they will. His season at Fulham has been difficult and he has only just broken back in to the team.

But they love him at Craven Cottage, for his desire to succeed and his innate ability to see the big picture. One would imagine it will take him far, on the pitch or off.

‘Coming from my background, you cannot let people walk over you because if you allow them to they will,’ he added.

‘If you have something to say, say it. If you have to fight, you have to fight.

‘But as I have got older I realise I have had to look at things from a different perspective.

‘Life is not just about me or about football.

‘I have to try and inspire young people. My uncle Errol came through a certain situation and made a name for himself. I am trying to do the same.

‘I am just trying to be the best version of me. If I died tomorrow, how would people remember me? A good person, a nice guy. I hope so anyway.

‘That would mean more than promotions and medals.’




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Christensen reveals Chelsea youth team coach used to make them wear microphones in training – The Sun

ANDREAS CHRISTENSEN revealed his former Chelsea youth coach made the players wear microphones in training to encourage them to speak up.

The defender, 23, joined the Blues academy in 2012 and was part of the set-up alongside the likes of Tammy Abraham and Ruben Loftus-Cheek.

But despite showing plenty of talent from an early age, he was criticised for not being loud enough by former coach Dermot Drummy.

So Drummy decided the best way to get Christensen and centre-back partner Nathan Ake talking was to mic them up and listen back.

Speaking to the Chelsea matchday programme ahead of the 4-0 win over Everton, he said: "Dermot's sessions were good.

"Training was always with the ball, and on the pitch he was very clear about what he wanted to do. He helped me a lot, and Nathan Ake as well, because we were coming through at the same time.

"He thought we didn't speak enough at the time, so he put microphones on our backs and then we'd listen to it afterwards.

"He'd say, 'Is the microphone broken or something?'

"We were too quiet, basically, even though we didn't want to shout just for the sake of shouting.

"He did special things to help us and I think those things are going to continue to help us."

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