In Great Britain the numbers of the contagion from Covid-19, driven by the Delta variant and scientists, in a letter published in The Lancet, define the reopening decided by the government of Boris Johnson as “dangerous and premature”. Among the latest eases also the elimination of the quarantine on entry into the country for vaccinated people from Italy.
According to the latest analysis, weekly cases in the UK have seen an increase of 71%, reaching its highest level since the beginning of February. The Delta variant is also worrying across the English Channel. From Spain to Israel, there is a worrying increase in infections due to the greater transmissibility of the Delta strain which has already reached 104 countries in the world, seven more in the last week alone, according to the WHO ‘Weekly Epidemiological Update’.
The letter from the scientists
Covid cases in England increased by 71% in the week to June 30 compared to the previous seven days, with a total of 135,685 people testing positive, according to the latest Test and Trace data. This is the highest number from the week to February 3.
Over 100 world experts have written a letter, published by Lancet, asking British Prime Minister Boris Johnson to delay the reopening scheduled for July, defined ‘dangerous and premature’. Removing the restrictions, the experts write, risks causing millions of infections and arousing chronic problems and disabilities related to ‘long Covid’ in patients. There are five main reasons why the government’s chosen strategy is considered dangerous.
“For one thing, an unmitigated transmission will strike above all else unvaccinated children and young people, who have already suffered a lot – the experts write in the letter, which has Deepti Gurdasani of Queen Mary University as the first signature -. Second, the high rates of transmission in schools and children will lead to significant problems from the point of view ofeducation. Third, preliminary estimates suggest that this strategy could provide a breeding ground for the emergence of vaccine resistant variants.
Epsilon variant “reduces the effectiveness of Pfizer and Moderna”: because it is more resistant to vaccines
Fourth, this strategy will have a significant impact on health services and workers who have not yet recovered from previous waves. Fifth, since the most disadvantaged communities are more at risk from Covid-19, these policies will continue to disproportionately affect the most vulnerable people ». Vaccination, the letter points out, offers the prospect of achieving community immunity even without having the tens of thousands of cases due to reopening.
«In light of these serious risks – we read – we consider every strategy that tolerates high levels of infection unethical and illogical. The UK government needs to reconsider its current strategy and take urgent steps to protect the public, including children. We think that the government is embarking on a dangerous and unethical experiment, and we ask for a pause in the plan to abandon the mitigation measures on July 19 ”.
Delta variant, at Wembley there is a risk of outbreaks. Fear for the final: a thousand traveling from Italy
No quarantine for those vaccinated from Italy
Those who return to Britain from Italy and have obtained both doses of the coronavirus vaccine it will no longer have to undergo quarantine introduced to limit infections. This was confirmed by British Transport Minister Grant Shapps, explaining that the measure applies to all people who have completed the vaccination process for at least 14 days and who come from countries included in the so-called ‘ambrà list. In addition to Italy, therefore, those coming from Greece, Spain or Portugal, for example, must not self-isolate. But also from Austria, Belgium and Holland to name a few. The measure applies not only to vaccinated persons, but also to minors under 18 years of age.
First case of Delta Plus variant in Israel
For the third consecutive day, Israel has registered over 500 new infections due to the Delta variant. According to the ministry of health, there were 518 cases compared to 74,421 swabs carried out with a positivity rate that remains at 0.7%. The seriously ill have risen to at least 46 with a doubling compared to a week ago and the latest victim (in total now 6,429) was an 86-year-old man, doubly vaccinated, who died in Haifa from complications of covid. Furthermore, for the first time in Israel, the Delta plus variant was found on a passenger arriving from abroad at Ben Gurion airport.
“Delta variant at 90% by August”. WHO: cases on the rise, masks and distances even if vaccinated
Spain, Delta dominant in 4 regions
The Delta variant it is also rapidly expanding in Spain and advancing unevenly in the communities, but it is already predominant in Madrid, Catalonia, the Valencian Community and Navarre. The latest report from the Ministry of Health cited by El Pais, which corresponds to the week of June 14, indicates an increase in the expansion of the variant and places its presence in 11% of the samples analyzed, but the consulted experts agree that the actual circulation of this variant is currently greater. In Catalonia, the regional Health Department confirms that 60% of cases in the territory are due to the Delta variant. Even in Madrid, the strain already represents the majority of infections (44.3% against 41.6% caused by Alfa). In the Valencian Community, its regional president Ximo Puig has assured that the prevalence of this variant is around 50%. In Navarre, the Delta already causes around 80% of cases.
The French State Secretary for European Affairs, Clément Beaune, advises against booking summer holidays in Spain or Portugal, due to the coronavirus situation. “Those who have not yet booked their holidays, avoid, let’s avoid Portugal, Spain, among your destinations (…) Better to stay in France or go to other countries”, he told France 2 microphones, adding that some Countries have “opened their doors too much”, with the aim of benefiting from the tourist season. Beaune wanted to convey a “message of caution”, in particular, to summer travelers. “In general, the pandemic is not over”, he continued in a context in which fears are increasing, in particular, related to the Delta variant of the coronavirus. Still speaking of Spain and Portugal, Beaune did not rule out the adoption of “strengthened measures” against these two countries in the coming days if contamination continues to increase.
Russia, infections on the rise: effect of the Delta variant
Russia has exceeded 5.7 million cases of Coronavirus with 24,818 new infections recorded in the last 24 hours. The deaths were 734 and the total deaths from Covid-19 since the beginning of the pandemic 140,775. The increase in cases and deaths was attributed to the Delta variant by the authorities, who urged the population to abide by the health safety regulations adopted and to respect the restrictions.
State of emergency extended in Japan
The state of emergency imposed to contain the spread of the coronavirus will be extended in Japan until 22 August, thus covering the period of the Olympics. The official announcement by Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga is expected in the next few hours. The decision follows the continuous increase in infections in Japan. Yesterday 920 cases were confirmed against 714 a week ago. This is the highest number of infections since May, when the thousand cases were exceeded.
Olympics, towards a state of emergency in Tokyo. Doubts for the access of spectators to the stands
South Korea fears fourth wave
South Korea has recorded 1,275 new coronavirus cases in the past 24 hours, surpassing the previous record of 1,240 last December. South Korean authorities now fear a fourth pandemic wave in the country after recording almost double the number of infections compared to around 740 earlier this week. Kim Boo-kyum, South Korea’s prime minister, said the measures in place in the Greater Seoul area would remain in effect at least another week.