TOP TRENDING

Scientists say British should cancel Christmas gatherings


The British have been warned by scientists fearing another wave of Covid-19 infections could emerge in the New Year to reconsider Christmas gatherings that run the risk of infecting the vulnerable and the elderly we love.

Families across the UK can create a Christmas bubble and spend the holiday season between December 23rd and 27th with no more than three households.

This allows the British to travel between levels to join their "bubble", allowing groups to meet in private homes, gardens, places of worship and public outdoor areas.

However, experts have warned that the government is sending the "wrong message" by only asking families to "obey the rules". Some suggest that a third wave of infections could be triggered in the New Year.

Areas like London at risk of getting into Tier 3 have seen a surge in infections – with a case rate per 100,000 people of 191.8 on December 6, down from 158.1 the previous week.

Scientists are now urging the British to reconsider their Christmas plans, insisting that the best way to keep their loved ones safe is not to see them.

The British have been warned by scientists fearing another wave of Covid-19 infections could hit the UK in the New Year to reconsider Christmas gatherings that are not worth the risk. Pictured: shoppers in London today

In other coronavirus developments:

  • Councils, under England's toughest coronavirus restrictions, will roll out rapid community testing programs to lower Covid-19 transmission rates this winter
  • Doctors who will give the Pfizer / BioNtech vaccine next week have been told to give priority to elderly ethnic minority patients and patients with underlying health conditions if there is high demand for the vaccine.
  • Nadra Ahmed, chair of the National Care Association, said up to 40 percent of nursing home workers could choose not to take the coronavirus vaccine as it will be rolled out in the coming days.
  • Britain's daily Covid-19 cases increased 33 percent on Friday from seven days ago. A total of 21,672 new cases were announced, a slight increase from 20,964 on Thursday;
  • There were also 424 more deaths from coronavirus, a 15 percent decrease from the 504 reading last Friday and the 516 reading Thursday. This means that there have been a total of 63,506 deaths from the disease in the UK
  • SAGE, Number 10's Scientific Advisory Group on Emergencies, estimated the R-number to be 0.9 to 1.0 across the UK, after rising from 0.8 to 1.0 a week ago
  • The self-isolation period for contacts with a positive coronavirus case is to be reduced from Monday to 14 days to 10 days in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland. The change already applies in Wales.

Professor Devi Sridhar, the Chair of Global Public Health at the University of Edinburgh, told the Guardian, "If people are (not) careful, we will pay for our Christmas parties with locks in January and February."

"With a vaccine in a few weeks, why should we run the risk of infecting vulnerable and elderly people we love?"

Professor Susan Mitchie, a psychologist at University College London and a member of SAGE, added, "You have to respond to the situation as it is, not the situation we would like it to be."

And Professor Stephen Reicher, government advisor in the SAGE public health compliance sub-group, warned that a plea by Health Secretary Matt Hancock to abide by the rules "totally misses the point" .

"The danger is, when you say people can, you are implying that it is safe and therefore they should," he said.

Professor Reicher added that the government council should choose to meet with loved ones but warn that it is "dangerous" and should only be done when necessary.

He said, “There may be circumstances where there are other factors that lead you to believe that it is worth taking this risk – but people need to do it in order to know and be clear about what it is Risk is.

Linda Bauld of the University of Edinburgh has also warned that easing Covid restrictions for five days over the Christmas period is a "mistake" that will have "consequences".

She said, “I think people need to consider very carefully whether they can see their loved ones outside or in a very humble way. I also worry about travel, people moving from high to low prevalence areas. & # 39;

She told BBC Breakfast today: “I think there will be consequences. I fully understand why governments do this. Behavioral, people are fed up.

Families across the UK can create a Christmas bubble between December 23rd and 27th, spending the Christmas season with no more than three households. Image: People in Soho, London

Families across the UK can create a Christmas bubble and spend the holiday season between December 23rd and 27th with no more than three households. Image: People in Soho, London

Scientists are now calling on the British to reconsider their Christmas plans, insisting that the best way to keep their loved ones safe is not to see them. Pictured: People wait outside a Zara store on Oxford Street in London before it opened this morning

Scientists are now urging the British to reconsider their Christmas plans, insisting that the best way to keep their loved ones safe is not to see them. Pictured: People wait outside a Zara store on Oxford Street in London before it opened this morning

Pictured: Shoppers venture into Oxford Street for Christmas shopping this morning while London is close to Tier 3

Pictured: Shoppers venture into Oxford Street for Christmas shopping this morning while London is close to Tier 3

The fall rate per 100,000 inhabitants of the capital was 191.8 on December 6, compared to 158.1 in the previous week

The fall rate per 100,000 inhabitants of the capital was 191.8 on December 6, compared to 158.1 in the previous week

Weekly data from Public Health England shows that in many areas in London, east and south-east, infection rates have increased since the lockdown ended and Tier 3 rules could apply from next week

Weekly data from Public Health England shows that in many areas in London, east and south-east, infection rates have increased since the lockdown ended and Tier 3 rules could apply from next week

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) estimates a total of 481,500 patients had coronavirus in the seven days ended December 5, compared with 521,300 the week before (8 percent).

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) estimates a total of 481,500 patients had coronavirus in the seven days ended December 5, compared with 521,300 the week before (8 percent).

Tier 3 would "destroy" London's bars and restaurants

The government was warned on Friday to ponder the "devastating effects" of coronavirus restrictions on the hospitality industry as London was on the verge of Tier 3.

Teenagers were blamed for the huge surge in cases, which led to a mass testing program being introduced in secondary schools in the hardest hit districts.

MPs were instructed on Thursday evening to "expect the worst" after a PHE surveillance poll found the capital now has the highest rate of coronavirus infections in England.

It is believed that many MPs representing constituencies in the capital are ready to campaign for Tier 2 with Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

They believe mortality rates in London are comparatively low and the NHS can handle it.

A move to Tier 3 would be devastating for the pubs, restaurants and shopping sectors, especially so soon after the second national lockdown.

Kate Nicholls, UKHospitality's Chief Executive, said, “The impact of the restrictions on the hospitality industry has been so severe that the country's economic growth has effectively halved. Our sector is the only sector that is experiencing really negative growth.

& # 39; The constraints that are placed on us are devastating and go far beyond anything that can be experienced in other sectors. The scary reality is that those numbers will look tame compared to those for November and December when the lockdown was in place and the new, tougher animal system started to bite.

"When you meet people from other households indoors, the ventilation is poor, maybe older family members are in those bubbles, unfortunately because the virus hasn't been cleared … I think that means that Christmas time is a risk.

"From a public health perspective, I have to be completely honest, I think that's a mistake."

It comes as Christmas shoppers were warned by Downing Street on Friday to be cautious as London was about to move into Tier 3 amid an increase in coronavirus cases.

Teenagers were blamed for the huge surge in cases, which led to a mass testing program being introduced in secondary schools in the hardest hit districts.

The London fall rate per 100,000 population, which rose to 191.8 on December 6, means the capital is ahead of regions like the West Midlands that are already subject to Tier 3 restrictions.

Today the Mayor of London urged Christmas shoppers to stay away from public transport and wear face masks at all times when they are making £ 1.7 billion on the High Street.

More than £ 3 million is expected to be spent every minute in the UK's nine trading hours today as delays in online deliveries and an anticipated move to Tier 3 force some to speed up their festive purchases.

Mr Khan urged buyers "to keep a two-meter distance wherever possible" to prevent the capital from falling into the toughest restrictions next week.

In a joint statement with Cllr Rachael Robathan, chairman of Westminster City Council, he said: “We appeal directly to Londoners – when shopping it is important that you follow the rules.

“You have to wear face covering in shops and keep a distance of two meters wherever possible. Avoid using public transport during rush hour and walk and cycle where you can. If you have symptoms, don't take any chances or go out. Immediately self-isolate and have it tested.

“Companies across London have worked very hard to make their premises Covid-proof – but we must all do our part to ensure compliance. So shop safely this weekend. & # 39;

On Friday, Boris Johnson's spokesman urged buyers to be careful.

When asked by MailOnline whether high street shoppers should be careful, he said "absolutely".

The UK's daily coronavirus cases increased 33 percent on Friday compared to seven days ago. A total of 21,672 new cases have been announced, a slight increase from 20,964 yesterday.

Christmas shoppers were warned by Downing Street on Friday to be cautious as London was close to moving into Tier 3 amid an increase in coronavirus cases. Pictured: Christmas shoppers on Oxford Street on Friday

Christmas shoppers were warned by Downing Street on Friday to be cautious as London was close to moving into Tier 3 amid an increase in coronavirus cases. Pictured: Christmas shoppers on Oxford Street on Friday

Pictured: Revelers took to the streets of London last night as the capital teeters on the brink of Tier 3 coronavirus restrictions

Pictured: Revelers took to the streets of London last night as the capital teeters on the brink of Tier 3 coronavirus restrictions

MailOnline's analysis of government numbers shows that because of its size, London is currently registering more cases per day than 27 out of 61 authorities currently living under Tier 3 curbs, including Nottingham, Leeds, Leicestershire, Bristol, Newcastle and Derby

MailOnline's analysis of government numbers shows that because of its size, London is currently registering more cases per day than 27 out of 61 authorities currently living under Tier 3 curbs, including Nottingham, Leeds, Leicestershire, Bristol, Newcastle and Derby

Mr Johnson's spokesman urged the public to follow the safety guidelines, saying, “I think we have been clear throughout the pandemic.

"We urge the public to follow the guidelines in relation to their activities to ensure we can further reduce the transmission rate and protect communities."

However, he stopped telling buyers to avoid busy times.

"I wouldn't go into the discussions to tell people how to shop, but I would just repeat what we would say to make sure people are following the guidelines in place," he said.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock hinted on Friday that Tier 3 measures would come for London.

'My message to everyone in London is' let's stick to the rules' and don't push the boundaries of the rules but try to limit the spread of this infection as the numbers of cases increase in parts of London and parts of Essex Unfortunately, in parts of Kent, and we know what happens when the number of cases increases, more people end up in the hospital and more people die, ”he told LBC Radio.

Councils, under England's toughest coronavirus restrictions, will roll out rapid community testing programs to lower Covid-19 transmission rates this winter. Pictured: where the test schemes will take place

Councils, under England's toughest coronavirus restrictions, will roll out rapid community testing programs to lower Covid-19 transmission rates this winter. Pictured: where the test schemes will take place

Mr Johnson's spokesman urged the public to follow the safety guidelines, saying, “I think we have been clear throughout the pandemic

Mr Johnson's spokesman urged the public to follow the safety guidelines, saying, “I think we have been clear throughout the pandemic

According to The Telegraph, experts and prison insiders believe the London coronavirus outbreak may have been fueled in part by prisons in Kent.

The newspaper pointed out that four of the five areas with the highest infection rates in England – which are on a commuting corridor in south east London – are around the Kent borough of Swale and the Isle of Sheppey, which have three prisons.

One of those prisons had one of the biggest Covid-19 prison breakouts this fall.

A move to Tier 3 would be devastating for the pubs, restaurants and shopping sectors in London, especially so soon after the second national lockdown.

Kate Nicholls, Chief Executive of UK Hospitality, said: “The impact of the restrictions on the hospitality industry has been so severe that the country's economic growth has effectively halved. Our sector is the only sector that is experiencing really negative growth.

& # 39; The constraints that are placed on us are devastating and go far beyond anything that can be experienced in other sectors.

"The frightening reality is that those numbers will look tame compared to those for November and December when the lockdown was in place and the new, tougher animal system started to bite."

(tagsToTranslate) Dailymail (t) Messages (t) Christmas