Shijiazhuang, Hebei’s capital, on alert; US reports 290,000 cases and 3,676 deaths in 24 hours as Australia changes rules for hotel quarantine
- Pfizer vaccine protects against new Covid variants, study suggests
- Iran bans importation of UK and US vaccines
- Which countries have reported the new UK Covid variant?
- Arizona becomes Covid hotspot of the world
Emphasising the severity of the situation in the UK, an epidemiologist at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine has said the new variant should be treated as a “new pandemic within a pandemic”.
Dr Adam Kucharski, an adviser to the UK government, told BBC Radio 4’s Today:
The early signals we’re seeing are suggesting that there is probably less movement in the population than there was in November, but perhaps slightly more than there was in April. And, obviously, that’s concerning because, with this new variant, essentially each interaction we have has become riskier than it was before.
Even if we went back to that last spring level of reduction in contacts, we couldn’t be confident we would see the same effects as we saw last year because of the increased transmission.
Fraudsters are targeting elderly and vulnerable people with a fake vaccine, the UK’s National Crime Agency (NCAA), has said.
Officers warned that the scammers are demanding bank details or cash payments for access to a jab – something the NHS would not do when administering a legitimate dose.