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Coronavirus: Talks on tighter curbs and long Covid 'works in four ways'

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Here are five things you need to know about the coronavirus pandemic this Thursday morning. We'll have another update for you at 18:00 BST.

1. Talks over new curbs for parts of England

No 10 is to continue talks with regional leaders over bringing more areas of England under the tightest coronavirus restrictions. Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham, whose region faces that prospect - along with neighbouring Lancashire, is resisting the move. In London, Mayor Sadiq Khan wants tougher restrictions, saying a shift to the second highest tier could happen "very soon, possibly this week". Both want more financial support for their area.

image copyrightPA Media

2. Long Covid 'could be four different syndromes'

Long Covid - the long-lasting impact of coronavirus infection - may be affecting people in four different ways, according to a review. A National Institute for Health Research report says patients could suffer from continuing Covid-19 symptoms, permanent damage to the lungs and heart, and both post-intensive-care and post-viral fatigue syndromes. They need more support, while healthcare staff require better information, its review adds.

image copyrightSCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

3. NHS testing was 'dismantled' in virus hotspots

Staff in some virus hotspots were unable to access coronavirus tests after a number of NHS trusts wound down their in-house testing, following government assurances about the capacity of centralised systems, a body representing health leaders says. The government says it has increased testing capacity.

image copyrightGetty Images

4. What's life like under tier two Covid restrictions?

Much of the country is under the second highest level of restrictions, with many areas facing the prospect of a further clampdown on daily life. We heard from people in Preston about their concerns.

media captionHow do people feel about the new restrictions in Preston?

5. Belated party for pupils with lockdown birthdays

Plenty of parents have had to break it to their children that they won't have a birthday party this year, with restrictions preventing gatherings during lockdown. But one school in Flintshire provided its pupils with a silver lining in the form of a big birthday bash for all those who had missed out - and it had a little help from some famous faces.

media captionCelebrations went on all day to make up for the lost birthday parties

And don't forget...

You can check the latest rules where you live.

Also, find more information, advice and guides on our coronavirus page.

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