UK Health Secretary Says Coronavirus Cases May Rise To 100,000 A Day In Winter

Passengers, some of whom are wearing masks to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, will ride the Transport for London (TfL) underground train in London on October 20, 2021.

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LONDON. UK Health Minister Sajid Javid said Wednesday that the government will not implement the so-called Plan B strategy of its Fall / Winter Covid Plan, ignoring warnings from health officials that the country is at risk of “facing a winter crisis.”

“We are looking closely at the data and we will not be implementing our contingency plan B at this stage,” Javid said at the first government press conference on coronavirus in more than a month.

“But we will remain vigilant, prepare for all contingencies, while at the same time strengthening our vital defenses that can help us fight this virus.”

Javid said the NHS “works with distinction,” admitting that the health service is under more pressure, but rejects the suggestion that it is unsustainable.

“We will do our best to make sure that this pressure does not become volatile and that we do not allow the NHS to be overwhelmed.”

Javid said winter poses “the greatest threat” to recovery from Covid, adding that the number of cases could be as high as 100,000 a day.

It emerged shortly after the National Confederation of Health Services, which represents organizations in the UK health sector. warned some Covid restrictions must be reintroduced “without delay” if the government wants to keep people healthy and prevent hospitals from overcrowding this winter.

They added that this is because the NHS is seeing an “alarming” rise in Covid cases in hospitals and the community as it prepares for a tense winter.

UK Health Minister Sajid Javid speaks at a press conference in Downing Street on October 20, 2021 in London, England.

Toby Melville | WPA Pool | Getty Images News

The UK reported 49,139 new cases of Covid and 179 deaths within 28 days of testing positive on Wednesday, according to the latest government data.

The seven-day average number of new Covid cases in the UK rose from 34,000 in early October. Meanwhile, the number of people in the hospital who have Covid increased by 11% in a week.

The UK has recorded over 8.5 million Covid cases and 139,265 deaths to date, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. The UK is among the countries with the highest death toll in the world.

The situation is aggravated by a new mutation in the delta variant, which is being closely watched by British experts.

Downing Street said earlier this week that it is closely monitoring the rise in cases, but the Cabinet has yet to discuss contingency measures.

Business secretary Kwasi Quarteng told Sky News on Wednesday that the time has not yet come for the government’s so-called “Plan B” strategy, saying the focus should instead be on more booster injections.

Quarteng also ruled out the prospect of new national isolation.

Increase in the number of cases in Europe

World Health Organization officials on Wednesday noted a rise in cases in Europe, including the UK, blaming it, at least in part, for easing Covid restrictions.

“The Northern Hemisphere is approaching a new winter, and we just need to worry a little about this surge in Europe as we enter late, late, deep autumn,” said Dr. Mike Ryan, head of WHO emergency programs. Questions and answers. “As societies open up, we see this number increase, and in a number of countries we are already seeing the health system starting to come under pressure, we are seeing the number of beds available in intensive care units decreasing.”

Last month the government outlined its fall / winter plan to tackle the coronavirus crisis, outlining a series of measures to prevent the need for additional lockdowns. These include vaccine administration, testing, tracking and isolation, NHS and social assistance support, government leadership and communication, and adopting an international approach to the pandemic.

Javid said that if the NHS was deemed to be under overwhelming pressure, these emergency measures could work across England. This includes the ability to make masks mandatory under certain conditions, vaccine passports for events, and encouraging teleworking.

Health and care policies are communicated throughout the UK, with various provisions adopted in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

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