The UK has recorded its highest number of daily coronavirus cases since late February, suggesting that the Delta variant, first detected in India, is spreading widely across the country.
Government figures showed on Wednesday that the United Kingdom recorded 7,540 new infections, the largest daily increase since February 26.
Cases have increased in recent weeks as a result of the Delta variant. The concern is that the increase will put pressure on the health system again.
Another 123 people were admitted to the hospital with symptoms related to the coronavirus, bringing the total to 1,024. The number of people dying after testing positive for COVID-19 increased by six to 127,860 confirmed deaths.
Health experts hope the rapid launch of vaccines will break the link between new cases and deaths. So far, a large proportion of those infected are in the less vulnerable younger age groups, many of whom have not yet received a first dose.
UK may delay end of June 21 lockdown
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said it was too early to say whether England’s lockdown can end on June 21, as data on whether the launch of the vaccine offers sufficient protection against the rapid spread of the vaccine is still being evaluated. the Delta coronavirus variant.
“On Monday… we will take a look at where we are. I think what everyone can see very clearly is that cases are increasing and, in some cases, hospitalizations are increasing, ”Johnson said Wednesday.
“What we have to assess is to what extent the launch of the vaccine, which has been phenomenal, has created protection in the population so that we can move to the next stage. And that’s what we’ll be seeing. “
The COVID-19 Delta variant is around 40% more transmissible than the Alpha (UK) variant, the UK health secretary said on Sunday.
The spread of this more communicable variant is believed to be responsible for the catastrophic increase in cases, hospitalizations and deaths in India weeks ago.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said that one shot of the COVID-19 vaccine appeared to be less effective against the Delta variant, encouraging people to opt for their second booster shots.
Less effective vaccines against the Delta variant
A recent UK study, for example, showed that one dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech and AstraZeneca vaccines were less effective against the Delta variant than the Alpha variant, which first emerged in the UK.
Hancock added that the majority of hospitalizations in the country were among people who were not vaccinated.
In France, 31 cases of the Delta variant in the southwestern Landes region are being closely followed by authorities who said on Friday that there were probably more cases as not all COVID-19 cases are sequenced.
The Delta variant is the fourth “variant of concern” identified by the World Health Organization using a new naming system with Greek letters of the alphabet. It has been identified in 62 countries globally, according to the latest WHO epidemiological update.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism