By Alex Glenn • 13 May 2021 • 7:59
Surge In UK Cases Of Indian Covid Variant ‘Could Delay Lockdown’.
Scientists fear that a surge in UK cases of the Indian Covid mutant variant “could delay lockdown”. This new news has expats in Spain worried as they are “desperately” hoping that they will soon be able to see relatives from the UK.
THE new Indian Covid variant is said to be highly transmissible and scientists now believe that it could become a threat to Boris Johnson’s plans to ease lockdown. The Prime Minister has told Parliament that the variant is of “increasing concern”. The double mutant variant has been named B.1617.2 and is beginning to take hold in the UK.
Reportedly experts from the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) are expected to meet today, Thursday, May 13, to discuss the increasing number of cases linked to this variant. As reported by inews, experts are becoming increasingly concerned that the growing number of cases could affect the government’s lockdown plans, as cases have more than tripled in only one week.
One concerned EWN reader commented that “I’m desperately waiting to see my family after not having seen them for many months. I truly hope this will not affect lockdown plans and they will be able to visit Spain soon.”
Speaking to inews, a Sage member explained that the next stage of lockdown restrictions being eased is expected to go ahead on Monday still, although a “delay is possible” for the final step of the plans which are expected to occur on June 21, as reported the Metro.
Speaking to the Mail Online, Professor Paul Hunter, an infectious diseases expert at the University of East Anglia commented that, “There has been a lot of debate about when and if a further wave of infection will happen in the UK. The reports today suggest that this wave may have already begun.
“That hospitalisations have yet to increase so would be consistent with the view that the vaccine is still effective at reducing the risk of severe disease and gives hope that this new wave, if it indeed continues, will be less damaging to the NHS.”
London and Bolton have been hardest hit by the new variant and according to Professor Hunter many of the cases detected can be linked to travel. Bolton Council’s director of public health, Dr Helen Lowey, explained that, “There is no evidence these variants cause more severe illness, there is some evidence that the Indian variant spreads more easily than other Covid-19 variants, so it is the one that we want to stop and contain.
“We are working closely with our partners across the community to identify people who have the virus, to increase the numbers of our eligible residents having the vaccine and to remind us all that Covid has not gone away.”
The Euro Weekly News is running a campaign to help reunite Brits in Spain with their family and friends by capping the costs of PCR tests for travel. Please help us urge the government to cap costs at http://www.euroweeklynews.com/2021/04/16/ewn-champions-the-rights-of-brits-in-spain-to-see-loved-ones-again/
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Originally from the UK, Alex is based in Almeria and is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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