Britain is in a “deeply worrying situation” with more than 58,000 new COVID-19 infections recorded on Friday, housing minister Michael Gove said after the crisis meeting, which is unheard of since January.
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During this meeting known as COBRA, which he presided over and which was devoted to the state of health, the heads of government of various countries in the United Kingdom learned “very difficult information”.
“We know that the UK has recorded the highest number of COVID infections today since 9 January,” the minister said on television.
He also noted that the number of Omicron-type cases “doubles every two or three days in England, and probably accelerates in Scotland as well.”
In England, “30% of cases reported in London are of the Omicron variant” which had been identified in the country a fortnight earlier.
Gove said the variant is spread in such a way that people who are twice vaccinated are “sick, infected and potentially hospitalized”.
To contain its spread, Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Wednesday announced a tightening of restrictions, including a return to telework from Monday and the introduction of vaccine passports for some large gatherings in England.
The United Kingdom, one of the most bereaved countries in Europe that has killed more than 146,000 people since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, is already to the dismay of tourism and transport sectors fighting border restrictions such as Omicron. measures were resumed. , and wearing masks in shops and on public transport.
In Scotland, Prime Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced a tightening of rules to fight the spread of Omicron, explaining that its rapid and high transmission potential raised fears of a “tsunami of contamination” that could overwhelm hospitals. .
From Saturday, people living in the same household will have to self-isolate for ten days to a person who tests positive, whether they have had the vaccination or not, or their PCR test is negative.
The UK Health Safety Agency (UKHSA) has said that it is expected to become the dominant version of Omron in the UK by mid-December. The UKHSA said in a briefing on Friday that if current trends continue, the UK will surpass one million omicron type infections by the end of the month.
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