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Covid 19 coronavirus: Scientists warn the ‘long-term impact of Covid’ needs urgent attention | Instant News

Countries, including the US and UK, are investing millions into researching the long-term effects of the virus. Photo / 123RF

Scientists warn New Zealand’s health care system could be exposed to the “continuing burden” of people suffering from “COVID-19” – a “very real concern” that requires urgent attention.

Overseas research has found months after being infected with the virus, people experience disabling fatigue, “brain fog”, severe shortness of breath, palpitations, chest pain, severe muscle or joint pain, depression, anxiety and hair loss. .

Dozens of New Zealanders who are believed to have long been believed to have had Covid have come forward, prompting the launch of the “New Zealand Covid long haulers” Facebook group.

One of the biggest concerns is that people may not even know they have had Covid and then have lung or heart problems in their path without

doctors know the link, says University of Auckland immunologist Anna Brooks.

University of Auckland immunologist Anna Brooks said the prolonged impact of Covid was very concerning and needed urgent research.  Photo / Provided
University of Auckland immunologist Anna Brooks said the prolonged impact of Covid was very concerning and needed urgent research. Photo / Provided

However, any allocation of Government funds to research the long-term effects of Covid-19 on New Zealand is likely to be months away, even though overseas countries are investing millions.

The research proposal is being considered and will be released to the public at the end of the month, said a spokesman for the Ministry of Health.

Brooks said the old Covid research in New Zealand was important for a number of reasons including:

• Uncovering the longstanding prevalence of COVID-19 in New Zealand, especially among those returning who may have been infected with the virus overseas but never been diagnosed.

• Developing specific tests to provide assurance to individuals about whether or not they have the virus.

• Understand why patients develop COVID-19 symptoms by looking
mechanisms that may cause immune dysfunction.

• Monitor and support New Zealanders who have contracted Covid and could be at risk of developing long-term conditions.

Brooks said New Zealand also had the advantage of testing whether longtime Covid sufferers developed immunity to the virus because a large part of its population had not been vaccinated.

He said surprisingly very few people understood that the long-term and persistent symptoms of having Covid were very real and it was concerning that its prevalence was still unknown in New Zealand.

“Long Covid will be a continuing health burden and therefore research and support for the plight of New Zealanders is urgent.

“While the focus in New Zealand is on eradicating the virus and launching vaccines, there are concerns that those with Covid-19 will be forgotten.”

Dr Michael Maze, respiratory doctor and senior lecturer in medicine at the University of Otago, echoed Brooks’ comments last month, saying long-term suffering is real.

He and his team have followed people in the Canterbury region who contracted the virus during the first wave of the pandemic to assess their recovery.

“Talking to some people who have experienced these long symptoms, … the first thing they say is, ‘I really have a hard time getting people to admit I’m sick here’.

“They feel there is a perception that they have to get better and not be taken seriously,” he said.

University of Otago Professor Michael Baker is an epidemiologist and public health doctor.  Photos / Files
University of Otago Professor Michael Baker is an epidemiologist and public health doctor. Photos / Files

University of Otago professor of epidemiology, Michael Baker, said we needed to be open-minded about the long-tail effects of Covid-19 because much was still unknown.

“While we think it looks like the tail will decrease over time, there is no guarantee that there won’t be any other effects that get worse over time.

“People think once you’re cured of polio, it’s over but then decades later people emerge with this well-defined post-polio syndrome because polio destroys a certain class of neurons in the spinal cord and the neurons that are left over have compensated … and as it grows age, things get worse. “

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But Baker said keeping the virus away from New Zealand and launching a vaccine should be a priority and managing the consequences of infection is not immediate and the urgency is not as high for New Zealand compared to other countries.

The Herald asked the Ministry of Health how urgent the research is, what to consider, the types of research that could be done in New Zealand and when decisions about funding will be made. A spokesman said: “While this process is ongoing, there will be a limit to the amount of information we can provide.”

Peggy’s story

    Peggy Mulligan, 31, still struggles to smell her body a year after contracting Covid-19.  Photo / Provided
Peggy Mulligan, 31, still struggles to smell her body a year after contracting Covid-19. Photo / Provided

A year after contracting Covid-19, Peggy Mulligan is still having trouble kissing.

“A few days ago, I smelled gasoline for the first time since I caught a strange virus,” the 31-year-old told the Herald.

The New Zealander caught the virus in March last year while he was living in London.

He said his flatmate came home feeling bad and he thought he was dizzy but it turned out to be Covid.

“He was completely unwell for a week and we had an ambulance around the apartment at one stage because he couldn’t breathe but it turned out to be a panic attack. His emotions were high,” said Mulligan.

About 10 days later, Mulligan fell.

Mulligan caught Covid-19 in London last March.  Photo / Provided
Mulligan caught Covid-19 in London last March. Photo / Provided

“I was really tired. Usually I did a little exercise but I didn’t do it that week … I had a lot of body aches and headaches but was still able to work from home.”

Mulligan said she recovered but then a week later she realized she couldn’t smell.

“My housemate was cooking bacon and I was in the kitchen and someone said ‘who cooked bacon’ and I thought it was weird, I couldn’t smell anything.

“Then, more and more in the media and one of the symptoms people experience is loss of smell so I tested myself by sniffing my perfume and toothpaste and couldn’t smell anything.

“It was very strange and never really came back,” he said.

Mulligan said 100 percent of New Zealand research is needed to tackle COVID-19 because while symptoms are mild, others are not, and much remains unknown.


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Cook Islands Bubble: Air New Zealand prepares for flight | Instant News


The one-way bubble with the Cook Islands has been around since January. Photo / Provided

Air New Zealand is gearing up for quarantine-free flights to and from the Cook Islands and said the news of the travel bubble was “very encouraging”.

The airline said its team was busy preparing to embark on a two-way journey between here and the Cook Islands and across Tasman.

This includes rehiring and retraining more than 300 cabin crew, bringing back some airport staff, regaining ground officers to ensure a smooth process for our aircraft and customers on arrival and reopening our international lounges.

Chief executive officer Greg Foran said today: “The news about the travel bubble with the Cook Islands is nuti mataora (good news) and very encouraging.”

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern disclosed details of a potential two-way travel bubble with the Cook Islands after speaking with the country’s Prime Minister Mark Brown today.

In today’s press conference, Brown said the Cook Islands had asked for a date for the bubble, which will start in “May”, he said. But it is unclear when the bubble will start in May.

Brown said there were still some areas where the two countries needed to find a deal, but he believed it could be found in May.

Foran said a large amount of work was being done to prepare for a two-way bubble after one-way arrangements to the country began two months ago.

Air New Zealand in January began operating two services a week between Auckland and Rarotonga.

“A large amount of work is being done across airlines to get ready when quarantine-free travel to and from the Cook Islands opens,” said Foran.

There will be thousands of people who want to go home and see friends and family or to rest in the sun.

“We are working closely with the government and the airport on requirements. Safety will remain our top priority,” said Foran

New Zealand statistics show that in the year to February last year, more than 108,000 Kiwis visited the Cook Islands. This is up 1.4 percent from the previous year.

Victoria Courtney, Flight Center’s product general manager, said there was a high demand for trips to Cooks.

“When the exact travel dates are announced, we can’t wait to start sending customers to the Cook Islands quarantine-free for both ways in May.”

The Cook Islands can accommodate about 8000 visitors at one point and the company hopes it will fill up quickly.

He also warned that travel insurance, which is tricky at the best of times, may not cover Covid-related disruptions.

After the Government declared the Cook Islands a safe travel destination, Flight Center insurance provider CoverMore plans to provide cover in case you or a close contact contract Covid and it interferes with your travel plans, if the person you plan to stay in must be quarantined, if your accommodation requires rest for deep cleaning, and even if you are an essential worker and have to go back to work because of the outbreak.

What insurers won’t cover are government-imposed lockdowns, he said.

“It’s a good idea to chat with a Travel Specialist not only to make sure you have the right policy for you, but also to have plans for extended stays in case of hiccups,” says Courtney.

Air New Zealand could face competition from Pacific Air real estate identity Mike Pero later in the year.

The new airline’s flights will operate from Christchurch and Wellington.

The airline is seeking regulatory approval for its operations.

“We remain committed to providing a new experience for Cantabrians and Wellingtonians who wish to fly direct on daytime flights. No airline has done this before,” Pero told Herald earlier this year.

Pero in January was sure that Pasifika Air would air in June and during the winter school holidays.


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Film ERG Italy turns to hydroelectric, gas plant sales: sources | Instant News

MILAN (Reuters) – Italian renewable energy company ERG has started a sale of more than 1 billion euros ($ 1.2 billion) worth of hydropower and gas-fired assets, attracting interest from funds and utilities, three sources told Reuters.

ERG wants to sell assets to reinvest its solar and wind businesses overseas, while maintaining credit stability, one source said, adding a decision has not yet been made whether to sell them separately or as a package.

The Italian company is more than 60% owned by the Italian Garrone-Mondini family and is one of Europe’s leading wind players with an installed capacity of nearly 2 gigawatts.

ERG also operates 527 megawatts of hydroelectric power in Italy which generates a core revenue of 87 million euros and has a gas-fired capacity (CCGT) of 480 MW.

Mediobanca and Rothschild are working on the sale and are starting to send out packages of information, said two sources.

“The non-binding offer is due at the end of April,” one added.

ERG, Mediobanca and Rothschild declined to comment.

Engie, Enel, A2A and Dolomiti Energie are among utilities interested while infrastructure funds such as Ardian can also look around, the first source said.

Hydro assets are attractive and could raise around a billion euros, one source said, although questions remain over the duration of concessions and the fact that factories are concentrated in central Italy.

The gas-fired power plant, located at a refinery in Sicily, could generate between 200 million euros and 300 million euros, the sources said.

($ 1 = 0.8405 euros)

Reporting by Stephen Jewkes; Edited by Alexander Smith


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SBP said that gender segregation “severely” hinders economic development | Instant News

KARACHI: Pakistan’s gaping gender gap in financial inclusion is seriously hindering national economic development, the governor of the central bank said on Monday.

“Women’s equal access to financial services is a top priority for a country like Pakistan where a female population of more than 100 million is significantly behind men in terms of financial inclusion and contribution to economic activity. Only 29 percent of women in Pakistan have a bank account, which is among the lowest in the world, ”said State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) Governor Reza Baqir speaking at an event to mark international women’s day.

Baqir emphasizes a gender perspective in existing industry policies and practices to build an inclusive financial system that serves women and men equally. “Even though Pakistan has made some progress in terms of financial inclusion in recent years, gaping gender differences remain in the country and without the active participation of women our country’s social and economic potential will remain hampered,” he said.

“SBP is taking the initiative under a comprehensive national financial inclusion strategy to prioritize women’s financial inclusion and will soon launch a gender mainstreaming policy called banking on equality.”

The SBP governor said promoting equal opportunities for women and men to access and pursue financial and professional endeavors is essential for sustainable and inclusive economic growth in any country. Increasing gender equality in financial and economic opportunities could improve socio-economic development outcomes not only for the present but also for future generations, he said.

Realizing the existing problems and difficulties faced by women in accessing financial services, SBP took the initiative to provide a more conducive environment, he said.

The initiative includes a comprehensive national financial inclusion strategy to prioritize women’s financial inclusion and the micro payment gateway Raast to offer cutting-edge digital solutions.

In addition to promoting financial literacy in rural and suburban women’s segments, SBP has launched a credit guarantee and refinancing scheme, which offers a zero percent refinance rate and 60 percent risk coverage for small businesses run by women entrepreneurs.

“SBP is also working on a gender mainstreaming policy called banking on equality, in consultation with other stakeholders to reduce the gender gap in financial inclusion,” he said.

The objective of the proposed policy is to create equality in banking and reduce gender disparities in financial inclusion. The proposed policy identifies five main pillars under which action is targeted at increasing institutional diversity, incorporating a gender lens for the development and marketing of tailored bank products, modifying the approach to female customer facilitation, collecting gender-disaggregated data, and prioritizing gender. focus on SBP policy.


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The Bachelor NZ: Moses Mackay of Sol3 Mio, the famous face looking for love in the new season | Instant News

The next New Zealand scholar has been revealed, and he is a very familiar face.

Sol3 Mio’s famous Moses Mackay and co-host of the Flava’s Breakfast show will share roses in the hopes that he meets someone special in the new season of The Bachelor NZ.

Speaking to the Herald, Mackay talked about the time he decided to go on the fourth season of the reality show – and it wasn’t instant huh.

“Definitely not. That was the first thought that crossed my head when I got the phone,” said Mackay.

However, the 30-year-old musician changed his tone as he thought more of the opportunities and put himself out there, plus the pandemic meant he didn’t travel as much as playing in international shows.

Moses Mackay said to his bandmates "laugh and laugh" when he told them he was required to do The Bachelor NZ.  Photo / Provided
Moses Mackay said his bandmates “laughed and laughed” when he told them he was asked to take The Bachelor NZ. Photo / Provided

“I sat with him, I processed it, and thought, ‘life is all about adventure, so why not?'”

He admits his bandmates and cousins ​​Pene and Amitai laughed enough when he told them the news.

“They laughed, and they laughed, and they urged me to do it. Mainly because they wanted to watch the show and laugh,” but added that his Sol3 Mio bandmate was “100 percent supportive” of his decision to appear on the show.

This particular adventure will see Mackay looking for love openly, but in some ways, he’s used to being in the spotlight. Mackay competed on Celebrity Treasure Island in 2019 and it gave him a feeling of being on reality television.

“I don’t have control over how I’m portrayed,” he said, speaking of his attitude while filming the show.

“I just said to myself, ‘if I was just me’, all they describe is the version of me they see.”

When asked if there was a serenade in the shop when she met someone special on the show, Mackay admitted she hadn’t watched The Bachelorette NZ, the current female-led version of the show, so couldn’t speak to her. song that didn’t work from this season.

“With me being me, you might hear me sing!”

Will Moses Mackay seduce someone special on the show?  Photo / Provided
Will Moses Mackay seduce someone special on the show? Photo / Provided

Mackay shared that he’s been in love before, so he knows what it feels like when he’s connected with that special someone.

“A lot of creatives will be linked to this – we’re living a very unique life,” adds Mackay.

“I’m quite grateful that I’ve traveled the world and I’ve seen a lot of cool things and performing everywhere. I potentially don’t have much time to give to a relationship.

“I feel like I spend a lot of time giving to my family, and my friends and I are always giving to others.

“But I never really gave myself a chance to fall in love.

“I know how he feels. So I don’t shoot in the dark. But, life does things that make you move and grow, you flourish. So, yeah, now I finally do a TV show, which is still weird to me!”

What was Musa looking for in The Bachelor?

Mackay has given readers some ideas about the type of woman he is looking for on the show.

“For me, I’m looking for kindness and compassion, and all those great qualities in people.”

“I’m a pretty empathetic person, so I can understand when someone is not living.”

She told the Herald that her ideal first date is one where two people get to know each other well, and is not a fan of going to the movies for a first date for that reason.

On the other hand, “a cool dinner or adventure” fits the style more.

Art Green is back hosting the new season, following the host’s show at The Bachelorette NZ season two, which is streaming now. He is married to Matilda Green (nee Rice), whom he met in the first season of the NZ version of the franchise.

If she finds the right spark and perhaps soulful singing, Mackay might get lucky in love too.

• Bachelor New Zealand premiere on Tuesday, March 2, 7:30 pm on TVNZ 2, and tune in to hear Sol3 Mio weekday mornings at the Flava breakfast show.

Not satisfied with The Bachelorette NZ on TVNZ 2?

Watch ZM’s Carwen Jones and Celia Whitley as they break things down in the official podcast, Can I Steal You For A Second? After each episode airs, join the girls as they recap and dissect what happened. They’re the party-watching companions you never knew you needed.


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