Covid: Jabs reduce long-Covid risk and NHS cuts warning

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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 this evening.

1. Vaccines cut risk of long Covid

Long Covid is somewhat of a mystery but it seems being fully vaccinated cuts the risk of developing the condition. Research led by King's College London suggests that the odds of developing symptoms lasting longer than four weeks are cut by 50% in the minority of people who have caught the virus despite having two jabs. It's not known for sure what causes long Covid but symptoms include extreme tiredness, changes to taste and smell and joint pain.

media captionLong Covid means brushing my hair can be "emotionally traumatising", says Megan Higgins

2. Call for £10bn for NHS to avoid service cuts

Although the government says it has already provided additional money to tackle backlogs, groups representing the NHS warn services may need to be cut in England unless an extra £10bn in funding is received next year. The NHS Confederation and NHS Providers say money is needed to cover pandemic-related costs and reduce the backlog in operations and treatments. They're warning patients could be put at risk.

3. 'I'm used to hunger pains'

Morgan is used to feeling hungry. Universal credit has kept him going since relations with his family broke down in 2018 and during the pandemic the government gave an extra £20 a week boost. But it will soon come to an end. Morgan, 23, says a £20 weekly drop in the payment is "literally like taking food off my table". Read more about his story here.

4. 'Some patients haven't eaten for days'

A mental health ambulance team has been supporting patients during the pandemic by providing food parcels with their wages. There has been a 65% rise in calls to Linda Shrimpton's Merseyside-based team during the pandemic and after seeing what provisions some patients had they decided to help those most in need.

media captionAmbulance worker Linda has been offering food parcels to patients in Merseyside.

5. Prince Harry's vaccine plea

The Duke of Sussex made a surprise appearance at the GQ Men of the Year awards urging governments to tackle the "huge disparity" in access to Covid vaccines worldwide. Presenting a prize to the team behind the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine virtually, Prince Harry said until everyone could access the jab "we are all at risk".

And there's more...

Being fully vaccinated reduces the risk of long Covid but what is it and what are the symptoms? We've taken a look.

Find further information, advice and guides on our coronavirus page.

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