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Peace

The NI Protocol: what power do local MLAs have?
16 May 2022
The NI Protocol means that Northern Ireland remains in the EU’s single market for goods – unlike England, Scotland and Wales. It was agreed by

Economy

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Europe

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Explainer

Economic effects of the Northern Ireland Protocol
8 February 2022

The claim that the Northern Ireland Protocol “costs £900 million to Northern Ireland” annually is based on two articles by economist Dr Esmond Birnie.

While economic models are a recognised way of using simple frameworks to illustrate complex processes, they are often based on assumptions and are ultimately tested

Explainer

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Law

Changes in the Highway Code in Northern Ireland
1 February 2022

Social media and national newspapers have been highlighting upcoming changes to The Highway Code, inferring that the changes apply right across the United Kingdom.

Facebook Groups like the Ulster Roadwatch Community, newspapers like The Impartial Reporter, and the BBC News website have been sharing information inferring that the changes

Explainer

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Health

COVID-19 and face masks/coverings
14 January 2022

This article explains how to learn guidance and regulations of the use of face coverings in Northern Ireland and explores some of the available evidence regarding their use. 

What is the guidance on face coverings in Northern Ireland? The Northern Ireland Executive announced that the use of face coverings in certain indoor settings

Explainer

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Health

Seasonal flu and COVID-19
10 January 2022

Explaining seasonal flu, measuring outbreaks, and understanding excess winter mortality.

“Seasonal flu” is a very common illness, and tends to be more severe than the common cold. The most common symptoms are a sudden high

Explainer

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Health

COVID-19 and excess deaths in Northern Ireland and the world
10 January 2022

What are excess deaths, how is COVID-19 affecting them, and how does Northern Ireland compare to the rest of the world?

There has been a lot of discussion in relation to “excess deaths” and COVID-19. This term is not specific to this pandemic and has been

Economy

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Explainer

Childcare provision in Northern Ireland
8 December 2021

EXPLAINER: Updating FactCheckNI's previous analysis of childcare provision in Northern Ireland with comparison to other UK regions and Ireland.

A recent survey published by Employers For Childcare examined the status of childcare provision in Northern Ireland. This explainer article updates our previous analysis and

Explainer

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Health

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Peace

Comparing suicide statistics
24 August 2021

EXPLAINER: Comparing how deaths by suicide are measured across the UK and Ireland

During the pandemic, there have been claims that the number of deaths by suicide has increased, reflecting the acknowledged mental strain experienced by many. FactCheckNI

Explainer

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Health

COVID-19 vaccinations: fertility and pregnancy
5 August 2021

EXPLAINER: How do COVID-19 vaccines impact fertility and pregnancy?

The issue of how COVID-19 vaccines may impact fertility and/or pregnancy continues to be live. Health Minister Robin Swann told the Stormont health committee on

Explainer

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Health

Pregnancy and COVID-19 vaccines
28 July 2021

Explaining how guidance regarding vaccination against COVID-19 during pregnancy has changed as new research and evidence has emerged

On 16 April 2021, the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation advised that all pregnant people should be offered the COVID-19 vaccine at the same

Explainer

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Health

COVID-19 vaccines and aborted fetuses
27 July 2021

Concerns have been expressed on social media that COVID-19 vaccines are made from aborted fetuses, and some people object to the vaccines on religious and ethical grounds.

UPDATE: This article was updated on 27 July 2021, in response to a query about whether an mRNA vaccine by CureVac uses fetal cell lines

Explainer

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Health

Lateral flow device tests for COVID-19
9 July 2021

Lateral flow tests: their use, false positives and false negatives

Two biological tests are being used in the UK to control the spread of COVID-19: (1) the reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR, or PCR)