3rd April 2020

Good News Round Up Part 1

View all Coronavirus

Last week, we shared the story about a young man with cystic fibrosis who had recovered from coronavirus on our Facebook page. He also had a chronic lung condition. So many of you got in touch after the post, saying thank you for sharing a positive story.

Because, the news is dominated by devastation at the minute. They are focusing on the number of cases of COVID-19 and the number of people dying from it.

So this got us thinking. We know these are difficult times for everyone. However, it seems that often people are more robust than might be expected and despite what the news is saying, there are positives coming out of this situation and we are choosing to focus on them in our weekly Good News Round Up.

BBC radio presenter with chronic renal failure recovering after testing positive

DJ Ace, a BBC 1xtra radio presenter who has chronic renal failure and is on the waiting list for a new kidney, tested positive for coronavirus but is now recovering well at home.   

I’m putting this out there for people like me who have underlying health issues – you can get the virus and you can still be fine. I had symptoms for two days and I came out of it really well. I tested positive, and I’m fine. 

DJ Ace, on Instagram

He says he remains in self-isolation and stressed that it’s important to “do everything [experts] tell you to do – stay in, and keep washing your hands”.

Meanwhile, in Italy…

A 101-year-old man who tested positive for COVID-19 has been allowed home from hospital. Identified only as Mr P, he was born in the town of Rimini in 1919. He survived the flu pandemic that followed the First World War, and now he’s lived through COVID-19 too.

Gloria Lisi, the town’s Vice Mayor, says, “Mr. P made it. The family brought him home yesterday evening. So, even at 101 years, the future is not written.” She added that his “truly extraordinary” recovery gave “hope for the future.”

Closer to home…

Paul Cosford, Medical Director of NHS England, is responsible for organising testing NHS staff for the virus; a hugely demanding job.

It’s worth remembering that Paul is living with incurable cancers in both lungs and his liver. Yet he’s on the front-line of our health service, as he proved during a rigorous interview on BBC Radio 4’s flagship current affairs programme, ‘Today’.

He was grilled over the roll-out of testing procedures by presenter Nick Robinson – who himself had surgery to remove a bronchial tumour in 2015.

Both men remain very much at the top of their profession, showing that, despite the natural anxieties prompted by this virus, life can continue.

A breath of fresh air

In fact, the shutdown has led to an unexpected benefit: a big reduction in levels of air pollution. With far less traffic on our roads, levels of toxic pollutants are likely to fall even further.  

“The air is definitely much healthier,” said Prof James Lee at York University and the National Centre for Atmospheric Science.

The data shows reductions in particulate matter (PM2.5) pollution of a third to a half in London, Birmingham, Bristol and Cardiff, falls of about quarter in Manchester, York and Belfast, with smaller declines in Glasgow and Newcastle. These tiny carbon particles of can penetrate deep into our lungs, causing illnesses including lung cancer.

And to end on a lighter note…

Our now-empty towns and cities seem to be encouraging wildlife to become bolder.

In North Wales, wild Kashmir goats have descended from their usual grazing grounds on the slope of the Great Orme to stroll around the almost deserted streets of Llandudno. They’ve been spotted nibbling on hedges, fleeing from police and – sadly – failing to observe social distancing rules.

Andrew Stuart, a resident, notified North Wales Police after spotting the goats ‘hitting the town’ under the cover of darkness.

“The police sent a patrol car down and turned on the big red lights,” Mr Stuart wrote on Twitter. “I’m sorry if the goats got arrested. But they were being very naughty, gathering in groups of more than two.”