Here's a round-up of the main coronavirus news points from the last 24-hours.

  • Scientists have been given £4.3 million to investigate why people from black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) backgrounds are more likely to die from Covid-19, and find ways to mitigate the disproportionate death rate. UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) have funded six new research projects which will examine the link between coronavirus and ethnicity. Emerging evidence suggests BAME people are nearly twice as likely to die of Covid-19 than those who are white, after taking into account the age of the individuals and other sociodemographic factors.

The Northern Echo:

  • The UK Government does not agree with the claims of Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez that Britain has miscalculated the data on the rising number of Covid-19 cases in Spain, a minister has said. Mr Sanchez has called the UK Government's decision to impose a 14-day quarantine on everyone arriving from Spain "unjust". Local government minister Simon Clarke told the BBC: "We respectfully disagree with the Spanish government's position on this."We obviously continue to work closely with them and we wish them every success in managing this outbreak, but we've seen a very sharp increase in cases in Spain. "A 75% increase in cases reported between the middle of last week and the end of last week. That's why we took the action that we have.
  • The County Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust has revealed that 568 Covid-19 patients have been 'safely discharged' since the outbreak began. It is the first time the figures have been revealed for the area and shows how many patients no longer required hospital help at that time. This doesn't necessarily mean they have all recovered, but gives an indication as to how many people have left hospital after having the virus. Figures from the Office for National Statistics show there has been 346 Covid-19 hospital deaths of those with a County Durham and Darlington postcode. The figures, which were recorded between March and July 10 - registered by July 18 - shows 311 residents from County Durham died in hospital.  Meanwhile, 35 residents from Darlington died in a hospital with Covid-19 listed as a cause or contributing factor.

The Northern Echo:

  • There were a total of 8,823 deaths registered in England and Wales in the week to July 17, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), 270 fewer than the five-year average of 9,093. This is the fifth week in a row that deaths have been below the five-year average. Of the deaths registered in the week to July 17, 295 mentioned Covid-19 on the death certificate - the lowest number of deaths involving Covid-19 since the week ending March 20 (103 deaths).

The Northern Echo:

  • New measures to stop the spread of Covid-19 have been introduced in Oldham following a "dramatic" rise in cases. Residents are being asked not to have social visitors to their homes and to keep two metres apart when outside. Anyone shielding has been asked to continue to do so until August 14 and care homes will not relax restrictions. The new measures are essential to prevent a "strict local lockdown" like in Leicester, Oldham Council's deputy leader councillor Arooj Shah said.