IT’S “too past due” to effectively halt the unfold of the omicron variation within the UNITED KINGDOM, a government technology adviser has warned.
On Saturday, it used to be announced all travellers arriving in England can be required to take a Covid-19 pre-departure check from Tuesday – while Nigeria is being added to the government’s trip pink checklist.
Ministers mentioned the additional take a look at was meant to be a short lived measure following new data showing an increase within the selection of instances of the brand new pressure linked to overseas travel.
However Prof Mark Woolhouse, who is a member of the Scientific Pandemic Influenza Staff on Modelling (Spi-M) which advises the government, said the measures wouldn’t make a “material difference” because the variant is already “spreading beautiful impulsively”.
He advised BBC One’s Andrew Marr Display on Sunday: “I Think that may be a case of shutting the strong door after the pony has bolted.
“If omicron is here in the UNITED KINGDOM, and it unquestionably is, if there is group transmission within the UNITED KINGDOM, and it certainly seems to be that manner, then it is that community transmission to be able to power a subsequent wave.
“The circumstances which might be being imported are essential, we want to stumble on those and isolate any sure circumstances we find, as we might for any case anywhere.
“But I Feel it is too late to make a fabric difference to the process the omicron wave, if we are going to have one.”
International Locations on England’s commute ‘pink checklist’
The trip business reacted with fury after the newest measures had been introduced, regardless of ministers insisting they were only “temporary”.
Dominic Raab defends new travel measures
Deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab told Sky News’s Trevor Phillips On Sunday programme: “I Know that may be a burden for the travel business but we’ve made huge, large strides in this usa.
“we have got to take the measures targeted forensically to stop the new variation seeding in this country to create a bigger drawback.
“we have now taken a balanced method however we are all the time alert to additional risk that takes us back no longer ahead.”
Prof Woolhouse said even if the numbers of people with the omicron variant are “still reasonably small” and sure stay in the masses, they’re “rising slightly speedy”.
Then Again, he insisted that vaccinations will nonetheless be “very, very good” at protecting against the new variation.
Statistician Prof Sir David Spiegelhalter told Sky News’s Trevor Phillips On Sunday programme: “It’s A very tough scenario as a result of we have not got so much of information yet in any respect, nearly nothing from this us of a approximately what the hazards are.
“In South Africa there’s information popping out appearing pretty sturdy evidence that the higher risk of transmission and a few proof about people going to sanatorium, but it surely may very well be milder but we have not got enough knowledge yet to be able to mention.
“It doesn’t glance as if it’s in reality serious in the event you get it, I Feel that is about all we can say on the moment.”
Asked if measures to struggle the unfold of omicron have gone some distance sufficient, Prof Sir David brought: “it is best to be precautionary, whilst there is such a lot we do not recognize… and whilst we don’t know it is better to be protected than sorry.”
Omicron ‘highly transmissible’ but causes ‘milder’ illness
A South African health researcher mentioned early knowledge shows omicron is extremely transmissible, but has a not up to 1% in keeping with cent chance of re-infection and usually ends up in “milder” illness.
Talking on the Andrew Marr Show, Professor Willem Hanekom, director of the Africa Well Being Analysis Institute in South Africa mentioned: “We All Know 3 things that we didn’t understand remaining week, the primary factor is that the virus is spreading extremely speedy in South Africa, the increase in circumstances is far steeper than it’s been within the earlier three waves so it seems that omicron is in a position to spread comfortably and just about all the cases that we see in South Africa at this time are omicron.
“the second one factor we have now information on is re-infections, in order you understand, after you might have had Covid you might have about a 1 in keeping with cent probability, or maybe even not up to a 1 in step with cent probability, of having re-inflamed or even getting illness again, in fact, through this virus.
“The 3rd little bit of information we have already relates to scientific instances and how critical the disease is. the one knowledge indicates the illness might occur extra in more youthful other people and mostly younger people who are unvaccinated and overall so far the illness has looked as if it would be milder but again I need to say now we have to be cautious – these are very early days.”