Local COVID-19 restrictions could be reinstated if South African variants are not suppressed: British experts



Medical experts warn that the UK may need to re-impose COVID-19 restrictions in the region if ongoing mass testing fails to control South African variants.

Professor John Edmonds, an infectious disease expert at the London School of Economics and Tropical Medicine, told ITV: Plague Podcast..

But there is “great uncertainty” about how serious hospitalization and death will be, said Edmonds, a member of the UK Government’s Emergency Science Advisory Group (SAGE).

Regarding the various variants of the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, he said: “The South African variant is probably the most worried of what is known at the moment, so I think it’s right to do everything possible. Try to curb the case.”

UK health officials are conducting surge testing operations in several districts of London to identify and isolate cases of South African variants.

“What we’re seeing in South London is an example of what we’ll see in the coming months. We’re doing our best to keep that variant as low as possible,” Edmonds said. Told.

“No one wants to do it,” but “in that case, it may be necessary to reinstate some regional restrictions,” he said, if the mass test failed to curb the spread.

Department of Health (DHSC) Said On Wednesday, we confirmed that additional testing and genomic sequencing were provided in the target area within the N3 zip code area of ​​Burnett’s North London area, where confirmed cases of South African variants were found.

According to the results of genomic sequencing cited by DHSC, this case is not associated with a cluster previously identified in South London.

Surge tests are already underway in the South London area of ​​Southwark, Lambeth and Wandsworth, with at least 44 confirmed cases and 30 possible cases found.

Medical experts warn that South African variants are more resistant to antibodies than the original variants and may reduce the effectiveness of the vaccine.

According to a study published in February, the Oxford / AstraZeneca vaccine does not appear to provide protection against cases of mild and moderate COVID-19 due to South African variants.

Health Minister Matt Hancock said in February that British officials would “kill the mutant virus hard” to limit its spread to the community.

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