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Live Reporting

Chris Bell, Kris Bramwell and Kelly-Leigh Cooper

All times stated are UK

  1. Thanks for following today

    We know it's a worrying time for many of you, so we hope the advice from our correspondents today has helped put your minds at ease a little.

    We're going to wrap up this special live page for today but our experts will continue to answer your questions across the BBC's television, radio and online output for as long as coronavirus is around.

    You can get in touch by emailing or tweet us using the hashtag #BBCYourQuestions

    Your questions answered branding graphics
  2. My wife's a hospital worker, I'm isolating. What now?

    Question from David

    Nick Triggle

    Health Correspondent

    If you haven't got symptoms you should just go about your daily life at home as you normally would David.

    Of course, you should follow good hand hygiene by regularly washing your hands, but if neither of you are showing symptoms then you don't need to distance yourself from your wife.

    Video content

    Video caption: Coronavirus: How to wash your hands - in 20 seconds

    However, if one of you starts showing symptoms of the virus then at that point you would need to try and distance yourself: sleep in separate bedrooms perhaps, use separate bathrooms if possible and keep that two metre distance.

    You mentioned that you have some underlying health conditions that make you vulnerable. There is specific advice on how you shield yourself from others for people who are in the most vulnerable groups, including chemotherapy patients for example. If you fall into that category then you should look out for that guidance.

  3. How long will getting a loan take?

    Question from Elizabeth on email

    Andy Verity

    BBC Economics correspondent

    Hello Elizabeth - local authorities are going to co-ordinate the grants for the retail, leisure and hospitality sectors but the loans guaranteed by the government are available through the banks.

    These will be available, by contrast to the grants, to all sectors of the economy and you should apply through your bank.

    Chancellor Rishi Sunak has promised the government-backed bank loans will be available starting next week and will carry no interest for months - so you should be able to walk into a bank branch and apply, if it's open.

    It hasn't yet been made clear if and when applications can be accepted online.

  4. What about zero hours workers?

    Question from Amy Wilson, London

    Simon Gompertz

    Personal finance correspondent

    Zero hours workers can claim sick pay. The problem is that to qualify for Statutory Sick Pay you need to have been earning £118 a week on average.

    So if you have not had sufficient hours you might not be eligible. You might also need to have worked at the place for three months.

  5. Is there help for people who lose their jobs?

    Question from Paula Rodrigues, in Nottingham

    Simon Gompertz

    Personal finance correspondent

    Paula sadly you are not alone in losing your job because of coronavirus. There are lots of people in this terrible situation.

    You can try a claim for Universal Credit. In theory, you can receive the money from day one by asking for an advance payment - though in practice it can take a few days to arrive.

    That way you avoid the usual five-week wait for Universal Credit. The problem is you have to pay back the advance later on.

    Charities are calling for the government to halt repayments of advances.

  6. I work in a school part time, will I still get paid every month?

    Question from Julie Blows

    Elaine Dunkley

    BBC Education correspondent

    The answer is yes, just as you would during the school holidays.

  7. How do you top up prepayment meters?

    Question from David Dennis via Twitter

    Simon Gompertz

    Personal finance correspondent

    View more on twitter

    The energy companies have promised to help you if you have a prepayment meter.

    So David, the options we are told will be on offer are: authorise a friend to top up your energy card for you or ask your supplier to send you a card by post which is already topped up.

    The government is saying that if it’s urgent the supplier should be able to add credit directly to your account.

    You need to ring the company and talk it through. The new scheme has only just been announced so we will have to see how well it works.

    You should be able to top up online as well.

  8. How do we apply for government business grants?

    Question from Elliott Bolton

    Andy Verity

    BBC Economics correspondent

    Hi Elliott - you can apply if you’re a business in the retail, leisure or hospitality sectors.

    Local authorities will provide the grants and they will then be compensated by central government.

    The Treasury is issuing guidance to local authorities in the coming days and local authorities will then write to those who qualify for the grants with instructions on how to claim.

  9. Who is a key worker?

    Question from Matt, whose wife is a social worker

    Elaine Dunkley

    BBC Education correspondent

    Hi Matt, key workers are people who work within the public sector in roles that are vital to the infrastructure of the community.

    They include teachers, police officers, armed forces personnel and NHS workers.

    Your wife is looking after the most vulnerable in society and so she is likely to be classed as a key worker.

    But hopefully there will be more clarification on this today from the government.

  10. What do you want to know?

    We've been answering your questions about coronavirus all day. On this page you can find all sorts of expert advice on everything from childcare to help for your business.

    We will keep answering your questions here until 17:00. So is there something you still want to know?

    BBC Your Questions Answered
  11. Are children allowed out with friends?

    Question by David Towns, who has a 15-year-old son

    Elaine Dunkley

    BBC Education correspondent

    Well David, parents of teenagers will know it can be pretty difficult keeping them in when they want to see their friends.

    It’s good for children to be able to interact and hang out with friends especially as there are so many things going on that may be causing them concern and anxiety.

    Younger people tend to be less susceptible when it comes to Covid-19 but I think the main thing is that they follow guidance in how to protect themselves and others. So social distancing staying two meters away from friends, washing hands regularly are beneficial.

    Close contact games like football are not a good idea in light of current guidance. It’s a confusing time for parents and children so talk with your son about how he’s feeling.

  12. What information can we trust?

    Question from John in Uganda

    Helen Briggs

    BBC News

    I’m sitting in front of the World Health Organization (WHO) website which has a huge amount of information on it, and it’s not just for scientists and doctors. In fact, there’s a series of myth-busters that have been developed by WHO.

    There is a lot of misinformation out there – people look at social media feeds and see all sorts of stories. But it’s just a case of looking at where the story has come from and whether it’s an accredited organisation. Look for information from WHO or from your own individual country’s public bodies.

    And of course, you can find all the latest coronavirus information on the BBC News website.

  13. How do people recover?

    Question from Mohamed in Sierra Leone

    Helen Briggs

    BBC News

    Our bodies are exposed to microbes, bacteria and viruses every day and we can fight them off.

    If we get something like a flu virus generally we’ve been exposed to it before, so the body has a sort of “memory” of the virus and it can fight it off. Coronavirus is a new virus so no one has built-in immunity to it. But that doesn’t mean you can’t recover from it and people are recovering from it.

    It means your body has to fight it off, and if you’re elderly or have medical complication that’s when it’s likely to be more serious. The majority of people can recover when they get it without needing special treatment.

  14. How long for symptoms to show?

    Question from Hassan in Uganda

    Helen Briggs

    BBC News

    What is being said is that it’s an average of five days, but there’s quite a lot of variability around that.

    Some people show symptoms within a couple of days and some show symptoms much later. Some people get infected but don’t show symptoms at all.

    It’s an unknown entity. We’re learning more about it every day.

    Video content

    Video caption: Coronavirus explained in 60 seconds
  15. Global concern

    We're getting questions from every part of the world. Helen Briggs, from the BBC Health team, will be answering listeners' questions from people across the globe on BBC Outside Source on World Service Radio.

    You can catch a few of her answers on this page or you can listen live this afternoon.

    And just a reminder, if you want us to answer your question, you need to tell us what you want to know.

  16. Should childminders keep working?

    Question from Claire, who is a childminder

    Branwen Jeffreys

    Education Editor

    Stock image of a woman with a small child

    It's an incredibly difficult situation for people providing childcare.

    Nurseries, which are obviously slightly different, have been told they should follow the advice to close. They tend to look after a larger number of children.

    You look after a much smaller number of children in your own home.

    There's one extra bit of advice which has been given to schools in the last week which might help you.

    If during the day you think a child is becoming unwell, you should take their temperature. if you're anxious about it they should be in a separate room from the other children until they're picked up. And the advice to schools has been to open windows for extra ventilation.

  17. Reality Check

    What's the truth about ibuprofen?

    There's so much floating around online about coronavirus that it can sometimes be difficult to keep up with what's true and what's not.

    One area in particular which has received a lot of attention concerns the safety of taking ibuprofen and other anti-inflammatories to manage the symptoms of coronavirus.

    Alongside genuine medical advice, false messages have been spreading on social media. So what's the truth?

    Person taking a pill

    Medical professionals told the BBC that ibuprofen is not recommended for managing coronavirus symptoms. But those already taking it should not stop without consulting a doctor.

    The NHS says although "there is currently no strong evidence that ibuprofen can make coronavirus worse", patients should take paracetamol until we have more information, unless a doctor has advised that paracetamol is unsuitable for you.

    BBC Reality Check has taken a closer look at the stories circulating online - and separated fact from fiction.

  18. How can I protect myself?

    Question from Twitter

    View more on twitter

    You're not the only one Nuraddeen. People all over the world have been asking the same question since the coronavirus pandemic began.

    Coronavirus BBC protection graphic

    Because Covid-19 is a new respiratory virus, scientists and governments all around the world are trying to work out the best way to fight it. Vaccine development is underway but for now the best protection is thought to be regular and thorough handwashing.

    You should also:

    • Avoid contact with people who are unwell
    • Catch coughs and sneezes with disposable tissue
    • Throw away any used tissues and wash your hands
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands

    Many places, including the UK, are also recommending and implementing social distancing measures.

  19. What is social distancing and what should I do?

    Generally, social distancing means trying to avoid contact with other people. But the UK's advice changes for different groups, so you may feel confused.

    Everybody in the UK has been asked to stop non-essential contact with other people and to avoid all unnecessary travel.

    BBC social distancing graphic

    For more details on social distancing and self-isolation, you can find out more here.

  20. What support will there be for pupils on free school meals?

    Question from Elaine, a school meal provider in Lancashire

    Elaine Dunkley

    BBC Education correspondent

    The Department for Education says it’s focusing on those children who get free school meals because they are vulnerable.

    Food poverty is a major issue for children who rely on breakfast clubs and free school meals.

    Making sure these children are feed is a priority. So this doesn’t mean all children getting universal free school meals in key stage one, as you specifically asked, just those who are of particular concern due to poverty.