The UK coronavirus alert level is set to be raised from 4 to 5 – the highest level – for the first time.
The chief medical officers of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have warned that the NHS could be overwhelmed « in several areas » within 21 days without further action.
Level 5 or « red » means that there is a « material risk that health services will be overwhelmed » compared to level 4 when virus transmission is « high or exponentially increasing ». .
The COVID-19 alert level relates to the threat posed by the epidemic and is separate from the tiering system in England.
It is set by the Joint Biosecurity Center, to which the chief physicians of all four nations belong, and defines how strict the restrictions on coronaviruses should be.
The Chief Medical Officers, along with NHS England’s National Medical Director Professor Stephen Powis, agreed to raise the alert to 5.
In a joint statement they said: « Many parts of the health systems in the four nations are already under immense pressure.
« There are currently very high transmission rates in the community, with significant numbers of COVID patients in hospitals and intensive care units.
« In large parts of the country there are almost everywhere cases that are driven by the new, more transferable variant.
« We are not confident that the NHS can handle another sustained surge in cases and, without further action, there is a significant risk that the NHS will become overwhelmed in several areas over the next 21 days. «
Despite the « immense pressure » on the NHS, the Chief Medical Officer insisted that people could continue to receive life-saving care, adding, « It is absolutely important that people continue to register for emergency care. «
The coronavirus alert system was created in May when the government set a way out of the initial lockdown and moved the alert level from 4 to 3 at that point.
The alert level raised on Monday came when Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a new national lockdown for England amid the rapid spread of the new variant of the virus.
Scotland has already announced that it will lock almost the entire country from midnight on Tuesday. The schools are open until at least 1. Closed in February.
Northern Ireland’s First Secretary Arlene Foster was due to join a call to the UK Government before the announcement this evening.
The Welsh government announced Monday evening that all schools and colleges would be closed by April 18. January will be switching to online learning.
The Indian government will be stockpiling the Oxford AstraZeneca vaccine until March as part of a nationwide vaccination campaign, delaying its further spread in developing countries. The Serum Institute of India (SII), which has been licensed to manufacture at least one billion doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, was granted emergency clearance by the Indian government on Sunday, provided the shots are not exported. Global health experts have raised concerns that the move means « the developing world pharmacy has closed its doors » – India is the largest producer of generic medicines in low and middle income countries. But within the country, which has suffered from the world’s second largest Covid-19 epidemic, there is an urgent need to rapidly implement a mass vaccination program for India 1. 38 billion citizens are increasing. Although the number of new daily cases in India has dropped to its lowest level in six months, the presence of the highly contagious British strain Covid-19 has raised fears of a new spike. « India’s Covid-19 warriors – frontline health workers and key service providers – are now protected by the vaccine, » said Dr. Jyoti Joshi, Head of South Asia at the Center for Disease Dynamics, Economics and Politics. “This is welcome news as India is one of the countries hardest hit by the virus. ”
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Britain was placed under the highest Covid-19 alert today after the number of coronavirus infections hit a new daily high. The highest alert level means that the transmission is high or growing exponentially and health services are at risk of being overwhelmed. The national level is based on recommendations from the Joint Biosecurity Center (JBC). What do the five alerts contain and how are each set?
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United Kingdom, Coronavirus
World news – USA – COVID-19: UK Coronavirus alert to be raised as NHS « could be overwhelmed without further action ».
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