Ebene News – UA – ‘Covid loves crowds’: Brits urged to stay home on New Years Eve

Scientists say virus is rife in UK and advise people to avoid hanging out with family and friends

Scientists, police and the Prime Minister urge people to welcome the New Year to their own homes, with an NHS chief warning that it is “absolutely vital” to avoid meeting with family and friends because ” Covid loves crowds “

Professor Stephen Powis, national medical director for NHS England, told Press Conference No.10 on Wednesday that the new variant of the UK coronavirus was fueling a sharp rise in infections, and said any plans to meet people other households should be postponed

“It is absolutely vital that this year everyone continues to follow directions by staying home and avoiding mixing,” he said. “Covid likes crowds, so please quit the parties later in the year”

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has also called on people to respect local restrictions and see the New Year at home

“This means not meeting friends or family indoors, unless they are in the same household or the same supportive bubble, and avoiding large gatherings of any kind”, he declared

Professor Jonathan Van-Tam, Deputy Chief Medical Officer for England, said during the briefing: “I know the New Year is approaching, I know it is normally a time of great celebration and fun, but you just played your role now in bringing us back from this very dangerous situation we find ourselves in “

The UK on Wednesday reported 981 more Covid-related deaths, the highest daily toll since April, and 50,023 other infections in the past 24 hours The number of hospitalized patients with Covid in England is higher than that recorded during the peak of the first wave

Professor Peter Openshaw of Imperial College London, a member of the UK science advisory subgroup Nervtag, said the situation was very worrying

“New variants of Covid in the UK and [South] Africa show the virus is on the move We need to reduce infection rates, keep them there and vaccinate as many people as possible”, did he declare “Each transmission is another chance for the virus to mutate: the more viruses there are, the more it will evolve”

He added that the impact of the Christmas mix should show up in the number of cases and the number of deaths in the coming weeks.

Professor Kamlesh Khunti of the University of Leicester, who sits at Sage and is also a member of the Sage Independent Expert Panel, said the virus was endemic and the situation was serious

“The number of admissions is similar to [where] we were in April, and that’s without the infections we’re going to have from the Christmas Day mix,” he said, adding that admissions for other illnesses, typical in the winter months, would add further pressure on hospitals

Khunti added that no one should be complacent, noting that Covid has affected young people as well, and urged people to forgo meeting in person to host in 2021

“Please don’t go out to celebrate,” he said. “Some people have been very successful at hosting celebrations virtually. There is a way to do it,” he added, noting that technology allowed people to chat, drink and socialize together safely

Scottish Prime Minister Nicola Sturgeon urged Scots to avoid traditional celebrations for Hogmanay on Thursday, including neighbors and ‘first foot’ parents on New Years Day and hosting house parties to welcome the new year “We should introduce 2021 into our own homes, with our own households,” she told MSPs “This new strain is very serious I can’t stress this enough”

Police said most people obey restrictions in their area, but across the country they had discovered a number of raves, large-scale parties, and businesses, including hairdressers trying to stay open

Police say they will focus on the biggest violations of Covid rules on New Years Eve, such as ticketed events and unlicensed music events, including raves, with sources adding that officers will not go ‘house to house’ looking for violations Officers will try to encourage people to comply before imposing fines

Martin Hewitt, chairman of the National Council of Chiefs of Police, said while many people might want to celebrate after a difficult year, there is a need to adhere to restrictions to prevent the spread of the coronavirus

A poll conducted by YouGov between December 8 and 9 suggested most people would forgo the New Year’s festivities, with a survey of 2199 adults, conducted online and weighted to be nationally representative, revealing that 95% of people do not plan to break coronavirus restrictions to welcome in 2021

New Year’s Eve

Ebene News – UA – “Covid loves crowds”: Brits urged to stay home on New Years Eve

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/dec/30/britons-urged-to-stay-home-on-new-years-eve-as-covid-cases-soar