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Coronavirus: Evening update as the Premier League returns

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  • Coronavirus pandemic

Here are five things you need to know about the coronavirus outbreak this Wednesday evening. We'll have another update for you on Thursday morning.

1. The Premier League is back

The Premier League restarts - behind closed doors - this evening after a 100-day hiatus caused by coronavirus. Aston Villa versus Sheffield United will be the first of 92 games that are scheduled to be packed into the next 40 days. Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said the "world will be watching" as he urged fans to watch from home and not gather with friends. We've got all you need to know here, as you follow the latest.

image copyrightGetty Images

2. Life-saving drug being used to treat patients today

On Tuesday, dexamethasone - a cheap, widely-available steroid - was being hailed a life-saving treatment for seriously-ill hospital patients with Covid-19 - today it is being used across the UK. Chief medical officers have written to NHS clinicians, telling them to use it now - and there's plenty of it, enough to treat more than 200,000 people. Here, we explain how it works.

image captionMarium Zumeer, 18, was back home from hospital one week after being given dexamethasone

3. MPs accuse unions of blocking school reopening

Teachers' unions have denied being "actively obstructive" over the full reopening of schools in England as Conservative MPs accuse them of running a political campaign to keep schools closed. Union leaders told MPs they wanted lessons to resume as quickly as possible, as long as it was safe. The row comes as more than 1,500 paediatricians call on the prime minister to make the opening of schools a priority or risk scarring the life chances of a generation.

image copyrightGetty Images

4. Hancock social distancing slip-up caught on camera

Health Secretary Matt Hancock has been spotted slapping a colleague on the back in the House of Commons, despite social distancing measures. He later apologised for "a human mistake", saying he "instinctively wanted to reach out" to a friend he had not seen in weeks. A government review of the two-metre rule is under way. Here, we consider whether reducing it could work.

image copyrightUK Parliament

5. New advice on shielding will be given 'very soon'

The government says the two million people in England most at risk from coronavirus, who have been told to stay at home since March, will soon be told when their lockdown can end. Health Secretary Matt Hancock said they would all be contacted. Scotland, meanwhile, has extended its advice to shield until at least the end of July. Should I go out? That's been the dilemma for many with medical conditions.

image copyrightPA Media

And don't forget...

... you can read more about who should be shielding, with our updated guide.

Find more information, advice and guides on our coronavirus page and get the latest in our live page.

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