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The new COVID epidemic raises concerns about unlocking England on June 21


Oxford, UK (Reuters)-Estimated reproductive “R” numbers have almost doubled in the last week of May and the “Delta” variant has become more widespread. The surge will raise concerns about unlocking the country.

File Photo: Leicester, UK, May 27, 2021, showing signs of social distance as the new coronavirus infection (COVID-19) spreads. REUTERS / Andrew Boyers

The COVID-19 limit in the UK is expected to end on June 21, but the rapid spread of the first delta variant detected in India is currently threatening the schedule.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said Wednesday that he would be cautious about deregulation, but there was nothing in the current data to suggest a delay.

However, on Friday, the National Bureau of Statistics said that an estimated 1 in 640 people in the UK was infected with COVID-19 in the week leading up to May 29, one in 1,120 a week ago. It showed the highest percentage since the first half of April.

The UK Department of Health estimated that England’s reproduction “R” numbers ranged from 1.0 to 1.2, exceeding 1 in the second week, and the epidemic could increase by as much as 3% daily.

When asked if the data were going in the wrong direction, Health Minister Matt Hancock said the increase in cases was not unexpected given the deregulation in recent months.

“The important thing is the impact on the number of people who will be hospitalized in a certain number of cases,” he told Reuters after a G7 ministerial meeting in Oxford, central England on Friday.

“The connection was broken by the vaccine, but it hasn’t been completely blocked yet. This is one of the things we watch very carefully.”

He said it was too early to say whether a decision would be made on the final mitigation of lockdowns until the data were evaluated.

According to government data, 6,238 new coronavirus infections were reported across the UK on Friday, the highest number since late March, up from 5,274 on Thursday.

However, while the death toll remained relatively low, an additional 11 people were reported, reflecting the impact of the vaccination campaign, which was given once in three-quarters of adults and once in two to more than half. It was.

Last month, the Public Health Agency of England said a double dose of the COVID-19 vaccine was as effective against the Delta variant as it was against the UK variant.

According to Public Health England, the Delta subspecies that are currently predominant in the UK are believed to spread more rapidly than the previously predominant British subspecies, but experts say the vaccine is still serious. It states that it provides protection against illness.

Report by Alistair Smout and Sarah Young. Additional reports by Andy Bruce and Paul Sandle.Edited by Kate Holton and Grant McCool


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