(WASHINGTON, D.C.) The Real Facebook Oversight Board Report: Body bags claiming that “disinformation kills” line the streets today in front of Facebook’s headquarters #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – July.30: Disinformation about the vaccines is certainly contributing to their slow uptake in various parts of the U.S. as well as other countries: This disinformation is spreading through a variety of ways: Local communities, family WhatsApp groups, FOX television hosts, and yes, Facebook.

#CoronavirusNewsDesk says EFF REPORT: Disentangling Disinformation: Body bags claiming that “disinformation kills” line the streets today in front of Facebook’s Washington, D.C. headquarters….

EFF REPORT:

A group of protesters, affiliated with “The Real Facebook Oversight Board” (an organization that is, confusingly, not affiliated with Facebook or its Oversight Board), is urging Facebook’s shareholders to ban so-called misinformation “superspreaders”—that is, a specific number of accounts that have been deemed responsible for the majority of disinformation about the #COVID19 vaccines July. 28, 2021…..Here’s why?

The activists pushing for Facebook to remove these “superspreaders” are not wrong: while Facebook does currently ban some COVID-19 mis- and disinformation, urging the company to enforce its own rules more evenly is a tried-and-true tactic: But while disinformation “superspreaders” are easy to identify based on the sheer amount of information they disseminate, tackling disinformation at a systemic level is not an easy task, and some of the policy proposals we’re seeing have us concerned.

1. Disinformation is not always simple to identify.

In the United States, it was only a few decades ago that the medical community deemed homosexuality a mental illness. It took serious activism and societal debate for the medical community to come to an understanding that it was not. Had Facebook been around—and had we allowed it to be arbiter of truth—that debate might not have flourished.

Here’s a more recent example: There is much debate amongst the contemporary medical community as to the causes of ME/CFS, a chronic illness for which a definitive cause has not been determined—and which, just a few years ago, was thought by many not to be real. The Centers for Disease Control notes this and acknowledges that some healthcare providers may not take the illness seriously. Many sufferers of ME/CFS use platforms like Facebook and Twitter to discuss their illness and find community. If those platforms were to crack down on that discussion, relying on the views of the providers that deny the gravity of the illness, those who suffer from it would suffer more greatly.

2. Tasking an authority with determining disinfo has serious downsides.

As we’ve seen from the first example, there isn’t always agreement between authorities and society as to what is truthful—nor are authorities inherently correct.

In January, German newspaper Handelsblatt published a report stating that the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine was not efficacious for older adults, citing an anonymous government source and claiming that the German government’s vaccination scheme was risky.

AstraZeneca denied the claims, and no evidence that the vaccine was ineffective for older adults was procured, but it didn’t matter: Handelsblatt’s reporting set off a series of events that led to AstraZeneca’s reputation in Germany suffering considerably. 

Finally, it’s worth pointing out that even the CDC itself—the authority tasked with providing information about COVID-19—has gotten a few things wrong, most recently in May when it lifted its recommendation that people wear masks indoors, an event that was followed by a surge in COVID-19 cases. That shift was met with rigorous debate on social media, including from epidemiologists and sociologists—debate that was important for many individuals seeking to understand what was best for their health. Had Facebook relied on the CDC to guide its misinformation policy, that debate may well have been stifled.

3. Enforcing rules around disinformation is not an easy task.

We know that enforcing terms of service and community standards is a difficult task even for the most resourced, even for those with the best of intentions—like, say, a well-respected, well-funded German newspaper. But if a newspaper, with layers of editors, doesn’t always get it right, how can content moderators—who by all accounts are low-wage workers who must moderate a certain amount of content per hour—be expected to do so? And more to the point, how can we expect automated technologies—which already make a staggering amount of errors in moderation—to get it right?

The fact is, moderation is hard at any level and impossible at scale. Certainly, companies could do better when it comes to repeat offenders like the disinformation “superspreaders,” but the majority of content, spread across hundreds of languages and jurisdictions, will be much more difficult to moderate—and as with nearly every category of expression, plenty of good content will get caught in the net.

#AceNewsDesk report …….Published: July.30: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#facebook, #fox-news, #united-states, #washington, #whatsapp

(LONDON) #Coronavirus Travel Report: Senior cabinet ministers are to discuss allowing fully vaccinated travellers from the EU and US to avoid quarantine when they arrive in England #AceHealthDesk report

#AceHealthReport – July.28: A review of the border rules is due by 31 July – the second date in the Department for Transport’s plan for a safe return to international travel.

#CoronavirusNewsDesk says #COVID19 Travel: Fully jabbed from EU and US could avoid quarantine as ministers discuss with airlines on best way forward as U.S and E.U do not have an open border policy with rise in cases and lower vaccination rates than U.K. …as sources said the isolation exemption was likely to be discussed at the Covid Operations meeting on Wednesday over 31st July review of border rules….but todays cases are these below for 28/07/21 …

What is the EU vaccine ‘passport’ and can I use it?

By Joseph Lee & Francesca Gillett
BBC News

Woman arriving at Heathrow

But they said a decision on whether to proceed will not necessarily be taken.

Currently, people who have been fully vaccinated in the UK do not have to quarantine when travelling from the US and EU, apart from France, because those places are on the amber list (and some EU countries are on the green list). But that exemption does not apply to people who have been vaccinated outside the UK.

Downing Street and the Department for Transport declined to comment on newspaper reports the government would go ahead with the plan to also exempt people vaccinated in the US and EU. 

The travel industry has been pushing for this change in the rules so that people living abroad can more easily come to the UK for holidays or to visit loved ones.

“At the moment we’re in this slightly ridiculous situation where if I’m on a plane from Spain, because I’m lucky enough to have had two jabs, once we get to the UK I just wander off, no problem,” said travel expert Simon Calder.

“But the person sitting next to me, who happens to have had their vaccinations in Spain, not in the UK, has to go and sit in a room for 10 days. Doesn’t make sense.”

The aviation industry is also calling for a change after carrying out a 10-day trial of checking the vaccination status of passengers.

British Airways, Virgin Atlantic and Heathrow Airport wanted to demonstrate that vaccination status could be checked away from the border and allow safe entry to the UK from countries on the amber list.

The companies said 99% of documents were verified correctly during the trial, which involved about 250 fully-vaccinated participants from the US, the Caribbean and Europe, travelling to Heathrow.

Two passengers had their credentials rejected, the companies said: one because their vaccination was completed less than 14 days before travel, and the other because of a discrepancy between the name on the passport and on the vaccine card.

The relaxation of the quarantine rules for travellers into England from the EU and the US is backed by a broad coalition of government ministers, who see the benefits to the tourism industry and the economy in general. “There’s no reason not to do this,” said one advisor. Another warned that an airline could go bankrupt if it didn’t happen.

A decision may be imminent but it may take days or weeks to put it into practice. For example, airlines will need time to prepare because they’ll be the ones checking the documents.

And the recent creation of an “amber plus” category at the last minute and without the knowledge of some members of the government shows that sometimes the process doesn’t always go smoothly.

Then there’s travel in the other direction, with the US in no rush to allow in British travellers despite the high-profile launch of a transatlantic travel taskforce last month. British Airways, Virgin Atlantic and Heathrow Airport said the UK was falling behind the EU in opening up to international travellers.

BA chief executive Sean Doyle said the trial provides the evidence that the government needs to allow fully vaccinated visitors from low-risk countries to come to the UK without self-isolating.

Heathrow boss John Holland-Kaye said there was “no reason to delay with rolling out the solution from July 31”, while the head of EasyJet told LBC such a change was “the right thing” but a “little bit too late”.Freddie Julius runs tour company Tourist England which puts on trips for overseas visitors. He said around 80% of his customers are from the US and EU and “over the last 18 months we’ve seen almost none”.

Tourist EnglandTourist England said a rule change was critical for the revival of the travel sectorHe said changing the rules to allow vaccinated tourists to visit without quarantining was “critical for the revival of the inbound tourism sector”.But he told the BBC any change needed to be lasting, adding: “

The constant easing and tightening of restrictions have made it almost impossible to plan ahead, both for tour companies and tourists.” However, even if the UK changed its rules for the US, its citizens have been urged not to travel to the UK by the country’s health protection agency, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And the US border is currently closed to the UK, as well as many other countries, except for US citizens.

The UK and US have set up a taskforce to discuss a travel corridor, although earlier this week the White House said it had no plans to lift Covid-19 travel restrictions for non-Americans.Boris Johnson told LBC on Wednesday that “we’re talking to them the whole time”.

The EU has encouraged its members to gradually lift travel restrictions for the UK, and each country has its own rules.Labour’s deputy leader Angela Rayner told Sky News the potential plan was “reckless”, adding: “We also know that people who have had the vaccine of course can still get the virus so a testing regime is very important and crucial as well.”US to maintain Covid foreign travel restrictionsYour travel guide to seven Mediterranean countriesUnder current rules, other countries are granted a “traffic light” status for arrivals – red, amber or green.

The vast majority of countries, including the US and many European countries including Spain, Italy and Germany, are on the amber list. Adults who have been fully vaccinated in the UK, and under-18s who are UK residents, no longer have to self-isolate after visiting any amber country apart from France. But anyone who was fully vaccinated outside the UK still has to quarantine for 10 days on arrival, or pay for the test-to-release scheme to shorten their quarantine.

#AceHealthDesk report ………Published: July.28: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts from Twitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/ and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#eu, #health, #london, #travel, #u-k-u-s

(JAKARTA) #Coronavirus Report: The Indonesian island of Bali is running out of oxygen for its #COVID19 patients as infections surge, the chief of its health agency said, as Southeast Asia’s biggest country struggles with the region’s worst in the epidemic #AceHealthDesk report

#AceHealthReport – July.25: We’ve had an oxygen shortage since July 14 and it’s getting critical by the day because of a surge in new cases,” Ketut Suarjaya, the head of Bali’s health agency, said as quoted by Antara state news agency as saying on Friday.

#CoronavirusNewsDesk says there’s an oxygen crisis in Bali.” As Indonesia, the world’s fourth most populous country, has had more than 3 million #COVID19 infections and 80,598 deaths according to official data the spread being driven by the Delta variant, has shown no sign of slowing acording to Telegram Reuters Wires…

Telegram Reuters Wires

Reuters Wire News, [Jul 24, 2021 at 09:19:

Research organisation Our World in Data said the country had a death rate three times higher than the global average.

The debate over coronavirus restrictions has pitted health experts, who say it is premature to ease curbs during the surge of infections, against employer groups that have warned of mass layoffs unless the curbs are relaxed.

Suarjaya said patients in Bali needed 113.3 tonnes of oxygen on Thursday, while hospitals only had 40.5 tonnes. He was not immediately available for comment on Saturday.

Oxygen shortages have also been seen on Java. The government has begun to import oxygen supplies from countries such as the United States and China.

#AceHealthDesk report ……….Published: July.25: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts from Twitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/ and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#bali, #coronavirus, #covid, #delta, #indonesia, #jakarta, #variant

(WORLDWIDE) #Coronavirus Report: The Delta variant of #COVID19 has now been detected in 124 territories across world the WHO has said #AceHealthDesk report

#AceHealthReport – July.25: Infections are rising, particularly in Europe and the western Pacific region. Some Western countries have started to ease restrictions as death rates have dropped. But those without access to vaccines or with a slower vaccine rollout are facing a deadlier threat…

#CoronavirusNewsDesk#Covid19 Delta variant spreads globally as cases soar across 124 terrortories worldwide and its expected to become the dominant variant globally in the coming months, with the WHO predicting that there could be more than 200 million confirmed cases within a matter of weeks Read More Here:

https://www.mc.edu.ph/news/ArticleID/4074/covid-19-delta-variant

Reuters/BBC/Indonesia Media: Indonesia has seen cases soar in recent weeks after the Delta variant arrived in the country

Here, BBC journalists around the world give a sense of the toll the Delta variant is taking and what impact its spread could have:

Valdya Baraputri, BBC News Indonesia: Demand for funerals soars with more than 1,300 deaths in a day, Indonesia has become Asia’s new Covid epicentre. Hundreds of people have died in self-isolation – possibly because they could not get immediate treatment or were turned away by overwhelmed hospitals.Wirawan, a firefighter in the capital city of Jakarta, sees the worsening crisis first-hand. He and his team are tasked with picking up bodies from homes before finally delivering them for burial. Before the latest spike in cases, he arranged two or three funerals a day. Now, he gets calls for up to 24 funerals a day.That’s more than he can handle, so the bodies need to wait.

Dying alone in Indonesia’s grim battle with Covid-19 that is recording more than 50,000 new daily cases, and the government is keeping emergency restrictions until at least the end of this week. It is likely to extend the measures on Monday.As the new highly transmissible Delta variant, which was first detected in India, continues to ravage the country, Indonesia is racing to vaccine its people. From 208 million people eligible for vaccines, only around 16 million have received both doses.What is the Delta variant?

By Michelle Roberts, BBC Health Editor: First cases were identified in India, but it has been reported in lots of countries around the world It is a variant of concern, meaning it has undergone some genetic changes that are potentially worrying in terms of transmissibility and vaccine escapeIn some countries, including the UK, Delta has become the dominant type of Covid circulatingExperts say vaccines still work well to protect against severe disease caused by this variantTunisia – Pizza offers for vaccine registration.

By Rana Jawad, BBC North Africa correspondent: Tunisia is now witnessing the most devastating impact of Covid since the global pandemic took hold. It’s not known whether most of the new infections are the Delta variant specifically, but case numbers grew after its known arrival here. Hospitals across the country are completely overwhelmed, with some medics filmed crying over a shortage of oxygen concentrators as they are forced to decide who lives and who dies. Getty ImagesIn July a health ministry spokeswoman described the Covid situation in Tunisia as “catastrophic”Infection rates are soaring, and the vaccination campaign has been very slow with less than 8% of the population fully jabbed. Rights organisations have accused the government of mismanaging the crisis, and on Tuesday the health minister was sacked. In recent days, Tunisia’s national telecoms agency has offered 1GB of free internet for those who follow a mobile text prompt to register for a vaccine. At least one known pizza place in Tunis offered a 10% discount if customers showed proof of vaccine registration.The situation could turn a corner next month after Tunisia received donations of vaccines, oxygen tanks and other medical supplies from European and Arabic countries, with several countries pledging to deliver more aid.Mexico – People tire of the crisis.

By Marcos González Díaz, BBC Mundo correspondent: Mexico is facing its third wave of the pandemic. The number of infections has risen to more than 15,000 a day, reaching the peak we saw at the beginning of the year.Authorities are concerned about the advance of the Delta variant, which in the capital Mexico City already accounts for around 60% of cases.The government admitted that the spread of this variant in Mexico and the US is the reason they have extended the closure of the land border between the two countries to non-essential travel.Most of those affected in Mexico are young and unvaccinated people. Only one in four over 18 year-olds in the country are fully vaccinated: The Mexican villages refusing to vaccinate but with 65% of beds available, hospitals do not show for now the collapse seen in the worst moments of the pandemic.In the streets, the feeling is almost of apparent normality among a population exhausted by this crisis. Many of them must leave home daily to work selling food or in other informal jobs, in order to earn the money they need to survive.This is why the government does not plan to increase restrictive measures or shut down economic activities once again, despite the risk of Delta.

Samba Cyuzuzo, senior digital journalist for BBC Great Lakes recently, Rwanda had been praised for its swift and strong measures to contain the virus.But since mid-June, the virus has hit harder. Cases and deaths have spiked to record highs week after week. By early July, all Covid treatment centres were said to be full.”We have never been here before in this pandemic,” the health minister told the state broadcaster on 6 July. Two days later he confirmed the arrival of the faster spreading and deadlier Delta variant.On 17 July, the country announced a 10 day lockdown in the capital Kigali and eight districts to try to halt virus. Cases and casualties, however, remain relatively high.More than 400,000 people are fully vaccinated – around 3% of Rwanda’s population.

https://www.dw.com/en/fact-check-what-do-we-know-about-the-coronavirus-delta-variant/a-57949754

Global & USA Cases as 24/07/2021:

  • Global Confirmed193,832,974
  • Global Deaths4,154,933
  • U.S. Confirmed34,431,974
  • U.S. Deaths610,850

DATA IN MOTIONCOVID-19 Data in Motion: Saturday, July 24, 2021A 60-second, daily summary of the most important data on COVID-19 in the U.S., updated every morning.

#AceHealthDesk report ………Published: July.25: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts from Twitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/ and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#coronavirus, #delta, #variants, #who, #worldwide

FEATURED: #Coronavirus Report: A mysterious marketing agency secretly offered to pay social media stars to spread disinformation about #COVID19 vaccines. Their plan failed when the influencers went public about the attempt to recruit them according to BBC News #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – July.25: This report was provided. By BBC Trending on the effort to use disinformation on vaccines with public, do what’s right in your heart always ….

#CoronavirusNewsDesk says that YouTubers who blew the whistle on an anti-vax plot and the The BBC reports they have made multiple attempts to contact AdNow by phone, email and even a letter couriered to their Moscow headquarters, but they have not responded.

By Charlie Haynes and Flora Carmichael
BBC Trending

Graphic composite image using the web page for Fazze - with options for "bloggers" and "advertisers". There are the profiles of superheroes in heroic poses with social media company logos on their their chests. To the left is a needle reaching into a vaccine bottle. The whole picture is coloured in red.
Mirko Drotschmann was offered money to spread disinformation on his social media accounts

“It started with an email” says Mirko Drotschmann, a German YouTuber and journalist.

Mirko normally ignores offers from brands asking him to advertise their products to his more than 1.5 million subscribers. But the sponsorship offer he received in May this year was unlike any other.

An influencer marketing agency called Fazze offered to pay him to promote what it said was leaked information that suggested the death rate among people who had the Pfizer vaccine was almost three times that of the AstraZeneca jab.

The information provided wasn’t true. 

It quickly became apparent to Mirko that he was being asked to spread disinformation to undermine public confidence in vaccines in the middle of a pandemic. 

“I was shocked,” says Mirko “then I was curious, what’s behind all that?”

Mirko DrotschmannMirko Drotschmann was offered money to spread disinformation on his social media accounts

In France, science YouTuber Léo Grasset received a similar offer. The agency offered him 2000 euros if he would take part. Fazze said it was acting for a client who wished to remain anonymous.

“That’s a huge red flag” says Léo. 

Both Léo and Mirko were appalled by the false claims.

They pretended to be interested in order to try to find out more and were provided with detailed instructions about what they should say in their videos.

In stilted English, the brief instructed them to “Act like you have the passion and interest in this topic.”

Léo GrassetLéo Grasset was horrified by the attempt to recruit him

It told them not to mention the video had a sponsor – and instead pretend they were spontaneously giving advice out of concern for their viewers. 

Social media platforms have rules that ban not disclosing that content is sponsored. In France and Germany it’s also illegal.

Fazze’s brief told influencers to share a story in French newspaper Le Monde about a data leak from the European Medicines Agency. 

The story was genuine, but didn’t include anything about vaccine deaths. But in this context it would give the false impression that the death rate statistics had come from the leak.

The data the influencers were asked to share had actually been cobbled together from different sources and taken out of context. 

It presented the numbers of people who had died in several countries some time after receiving different Covid vaccines. But just because someone dies after having a vaccine doesn’t mean they died because they had the vaccine. They could have been killed in a car accident.

In the countries the statistics were from, greater numbers of people had received the Pfizer vaccine at that time, so a higher number of people dying after having a Pfizer jab was to be expected.

“If you don’t have any scientific training, you could just say, ‘oh, there are these numbers, they are really different. So there must be a link.’ But you can make any spurious correlation as you want really,” Léo says.

The influencers were also provided with a list of links to share – dubious articles which all used the same set of figures that supposedly showed the Pfzer vaccine was dangerous. 

When Léo and Mirko exposed the Fazze campaign on Twitter all the articles, except the Le Monde story, disappeared from the web. 

By any measure the disinformation campaign was bungled.

Since Léo and Mirko blew the whistle at least four other influencers in France and Germany have gone public to reveal they also rejected Fazze’s attempts to recruit them.

But German journalist, Daniel Laufer, has identified two influencers who may have taken up the offer. 

Indian YouTuber Ashkar Techy usually makes jokey videos about cars and dating and Brazilian prankster Everson Zoio, has more than three million Instagram followers.

Each of them posted uncharacteristic videos in which they pushed the same message as the Fazze campaign and shared the fake news links from the agency’s brief. Both had also participated in previous Fazze promotions.

After Daniel Laufer contacted them, Everson Zoio and Ashkar Techy removed their videos but didn’t answer his questions. The BBC tried to contact both influencers, but they didn’t respond.

Ashkar TechyAshkar Techy shared the dubious data in his video

We tried emailing the people who approached Mirko and Léo. The emails bounced back, not from Fazze, but from the domain of a company called AdNow.

Fazze is a part of AdNow, which is a digital marketing company, registered in both Russia and the UK.

Eventually we managed to contact Ewan Tolladay, one of two directors of the British arm of AdNow – who lives in Durham.

Mr Tolladay said he had very little to do with Fazze – which he said was a joint venture between his fellow director – a Russian man called Stanislav Fesenko – and another person whose identity he didn’t know.

He said that he hadn’t been a part of the disinformation campaign. He said he hadn’t even known Fazze had taken on the contract before the story broke. He couldn’t enlighten us on who the mystery client was.

He said that in light of the scandal “we are doing the responsible thing and shutting down AdNow here in the UK”. He said Fazze was also being shut down.

We have tried to get Mr Fesenko to talk to us but had no success.

Both the French and German authorities have launched investigations into Fazze’s approaches to influencers.

But the identity of the agency’s mystery client remains unclear.

There has been speculation about the Russian connections to this scandal and the interests of the Russian state in promoting its own vaccine – Sputnik V.

Omid Nouripour, the foreign policy spokesman for the German Green party has suggested looking to Moscow for the motivation behind the Fazze campaign. 

He said: “Bad-mouthing vaccines in the West undermines trust in our democracies and is supposed to increase trust in Russia’s vaccines, and there is only one side that benefits and that is the Kremlin.”

But in a statement the Russian embassy in London said: “We treat Covid-19 as a global threat and, thus, are not interested in undermining global efforts in the fight against it, with vaccinating people with the Pfizer vaccine as one of the ways to cope with the virus.”

While Fazze’s campaign was a flop, Léo Grasset believes it won’t be the last attempt to use the power of social influencers to spread disinformation.

“If you want to manipulate public opinion, especially for young people, you don’t go to TV” says French YouTuber Léo Grasset. 

“Just spend the same money on TikTok creators, YouTube creators. The whole ecosystem is perfectly built for maximum efficiency of disinformation right now.” 

Listen to BBC Trending: The anti-vax influencer plot that flopped on the World Service. Download the podcast or listen online.

#AceNewsDesk report …..Published: July.25: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#coronavirus, #covid19, #france, #germany, #moscow

(BEIJING) #Coronavirus Report: A senior Chinese health official has firmly rejected the World Health Organisations’ plan for the second phase of a study into the origins of #COVID19 #AceHealthDesk report

#AceHealthReport – July.23: He dismissed the lab leak idea as a rumour that runs counter to common sense and science….

#AceHealthDesk says WHO’s plan to probe Wuhan lab leak theory ‘impossible’ for China to accept, says Chinese health official ………Zeng Yixin, the vice-minister of the National Health Commission, said on Thursday he was “rather taken aback” that the plan includes further investigation of the theory that the virus might have leaked from a Chinese lab.

Zeng Yixin at a press conference against a blue background.
Senior Chinese health official Zeng Yixin says the lab leak idea runs counter to common sense and science.(Reuters: Shubing Wang)

“It is impossible for us to accept such an origin-tracing plan,” he said at a news conference called to address the COVID-19 origins issue.

The search for where the virus came from has become a diplomatic issue that has fuelled China’s deteriorating relations with the US and many American allies.

The US and others say that China has not been transparent about what happened in the early days of the pandemic.

China accuses critics of seeking to blame it for the pandemic and politicising an issue that should be left to scientists.

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus wearing a surgical mask while appearing at a press conference.
WHO director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus hopes for better cooperation and access to data from China.(Reuters: Laurent Gillieron, file photo)

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the director-general of WHO, acknowledged last week that there had been a “premature push” after the first phase of the study to rule out the theory that the virus might have escaped from a Chinese government lab in Wuhan, the city where the disease was first detected in late 2019.I helped investigate where this coronavirus came fromI’m the Australian doctor who went to China for the WHO. This is what we found.

Most experts don’t think a lab leak is the likely cause.

The current question being asked is whether the possibility is so remote that it should be dropped, or whether it merits further study.

The first phase was conducted earlier this year by an international team of scientists who came to Wuhan to work with their Chinese counterparts.

The team was accused of bowing to demands from the Chinese side after it initially indicated that further study wasn’t necessary.

Mr Zeng said the Wuhan lab has no virus that can directly infect humans and noted that the WHO team concluded that a lab leak was highly unlikely.

He added that US speculation that staff and graduate students at the lab had been infected and might have started the spread of the virus in the city was untrue.

Yuan Zhiming addresses a news conference.
Yuan Zhiming, the director of biosafety at the Wuhan institute, also denied there was any truth to the lab leak theory.(Reuters: Shubing Wang)

Yuan Zhiming, the director of the biosafety lab at the Wuhan Institute of Virology, said they had not stored or studied the new coronavirus before the outbreak.

“I want to emphasise that …. the Wuhan Institute of Virology has never designed, made or leaked the novel coronavirus,” he said.

The WHO team concluded that the virus most likely jumped from animals to humans, probably from bats to an intermediate animal.

The experts visited markets in Wuhan that had sold live animals, and recommended further study of the farms that supplied the market.

“In the next step, I think animal tracing should still be the priority direction. It is the most valuable field for our efforts,” Liang Wannian, who headed the Chinese side, said at Thursday’s news conference.Defector may have to reveal COVID-19 origin, investigator saysWhile

Dr Tedros said last week that he hoped for better cooperation and access to data from China: While the United States investigates the origins of COVID-19, an Australian who spent time in Wuhan says “sometimes you need something like a whistleblower”

“We are asking China to be transparent, open and cooperate, especially on the information, raw data that we asked for in the early days of the pandemic,” he said.

His words were echoed at the same virtual news conference by Germany’s Health Minister, Jens Spahn, who called on China to intensify cooperation in the search for the origin of the virus.

Mr Zeng said China has always supported “scientific virus tracing” and wants to see the study extended to other countries and regions.

“However, we are opposed to politicising the tracing work,” he said.

China has frequently sought to deflect accusations that the pandemic originated in Wuhan and was allowed to spread by early bureaucratic missteps and an attempted cover-up.

Government representatives have called for an investigation into whether the virus might have been produced in a US military laboratory, a theory not widely shared in the scientific community.

China has largely ended local transmission of COVID-19 through lockdowns and mask-wearing requirements, and has now administered more than 1.4 billion doses of Chinese vaccines.

Just 12 new domestically spread cases were reported on Thursday and China’s death toll from the virus has remained unchanged for months at 4,636.

#AceHealthDesk report ……Published: July.23: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#beijing, #coronavirus, #coronavirusnewsdesk, #covid19, #who

(MEXICO CITY) #Coronavirus Report: Villages being refused vaccinations after with only 2% being given the jab for #COVID19 #AceHealthDesk report

#AceHealthReport – July.21: A few months later the pandemic had engulfed Mexico and thousands of people were dying every week. But Coquilteel and many small, indigenous towns in the state of Chiapas were left relatively unscathed. This has been a blessing but it also presents a problem.

#CoronavirusNewsDesk says cases have risen with men, women and children in this #pandemic and now Mexican villages refusing to vaccinate citizens with almost 30% of Mexicans have received one vaccine against #COVID19 so far but in the state of Chiapas the take-up rate is less than half of that. In Coquilteel, and many remote villages in the state, it’s likely to be closer to 2%. Last week Mexico’s President Andrés Manuel López Obrador remarked on the low vaccination rate in Chiapas and said the government needed to do more according to BBC Latin News

By Stephanie Hegarty
Population correspondent 

Relatives carry a woman with symptoms of Covid-19 in Chiapas state
Disinformation has led to indigenous communities choosing not to get vaccinated

In November Pascuala Vázquez Aguilar had a strange dream about her village Coquilteel, nestled among the trees in the mountains of southern Mexico.

A plague had come to the village and everyone ran to the forest. They hid in a hut under a tall canopy of oak trees.

“The plague couldn’t reach us there,” Pascuala says. “That’s what I saw in my dream.”

Pascuala is a community health leader for 364 communities in the area and she has been vaccinated. She travels in and out of the village and worries about bringing Covid back to her family and friends who, like most of their neighbours are not vaccinated.

They’re influenced by lies and rumours swirling around on WhatsApp. Pascuala has seen messages saying the vaccine will kill people after two years, that it’s a government plot to reduce the population or that it’s a sign of the devil that curses anyone who receives it.

AFPVaccination uptake in Chiapas state has been relatively low compared to other areas

This kind of disinformation is everywhere but in villages like Coquilteel, it can be particularly potent. “People don’t trust the government. They don’t see the government doing anything good, they just see a lot of corruption,” Pascuala says.

The community in Chilón are predominantly indigenous descendants of the Mayan civilisation. In Chiapas there are over 12 official traditional languages spoken. The first language in Coquilteel is Tzeltal and few people speak much Spanish.

The indigenous community in this part of Mexico has a history of resistance to the central authorities, culminating in the Zapatista uprising in 1994. “The government doesn’t consult people on how they want to be helped or how to govern,” says Pascuala. “The majority don’t believe that Covid exists.”

This isn’t just a problem in Mexico or in Latin America, it’s happening all over the world. In northern Nigeria in the early 2000s and later in parts of Pakistan, distrust of the authorities led to boycotts of the polio vaccine. Some of these communities believed a lie that the vaccine was sent by the US as part of the “War on Terror”, to cause infertility and reduce their Muslim population.

“There is fertile ground for rumours and misinformation where there’s already a lack of trust in authorities and maybe even in science,” says Lisa Menning, a social scientist at the World Health Organization (WHO) who researches barriers to vaccine uptake. “There are information gaps and perhaps poorly designed communications campaigns that have targeted these communities historically.”

Gerardo GonzálezPascuala, a vaccinated health worker, worries her unvaccinated friends and family might catch Covid

Nicolasa Guzmán García spends much of her day in Coquilteel tending to her chickens and growing fresh vegetable for her family. She does believe Covid is real but doesn’t feel the need to be vaccinated. “I don’t leave my home very much. I don’t travel to the city, I’m focused on looking after my animals,” she says.

She also believes that their traditional lifestyle protects the community – they eat healthy, fresh food and get a lot of fresh air and exercise. And like a lot of indigenous communities across Latin America, the Tzeltal practise a mix of Catholicism and their ancient spiritual religion.

“I can’t say if this vaccine is bad or good because I don’t know how it was made, who made it and what’s in it,” says Nicolasa. “But I prepare my traditional medicine myself so I have more confidence in it.”

She uses a mixture of cured tobacco, home-made alcohol and garlic to help with breathing problems, and tinctures made from Mexican marigold flowers or water of the rue plant for fever.

Medical doctor Gerardo González Figueroa has been treating indigenous communities in Chiapas for 15 years and says trust in herbal medicine is not just out of tradition but necessity – because medical facilities are often far away.

He believes there are some protective benefits from traditional diet, lifestyle and healing practices but he is extremely worried about low vaccination rates.

“I don’t think the efforts of the Mexican government have been strong enough in getting all of society involved,” he says. “These institutions have been acting in a paternalistic manner. It’s ‘go and get your vaccines’.”

AFPThe indigenous community in this part of Mexico has a history of resistance to the government

The federal government has said its vaccination programme is a success, with mortality declining by 80% amidst the third wave of Covid sweeping across Mexico’s more densely populated urban areas.

Pascuala believes the authorities gave up too easily when they saw that people were rejecting getting vaccinated in the village.

“It’s a false binary to think of supply and demand as separate things,” says Lisa Menning of the WHO. She points to the US, where polling in March showed communities of colour had also been hesitant to get vaccinated until authorities put a major effort into making vaccination accessible. Vaccination rates in these communities are now much higher.

“Having easy, convenient and really affordable access to good services, where there’s a health worker who’s really well-trained and able to respond to any concerns and responds in a very caring and kind respectful way – that is what makes the difference.”

It can’t be a top-down approach, she says. “What works best is listening to communities, partnering with them, working with them.”

Coquilteel is one of millions of small, rural communities around the world where this is sorely lacking. For now, all Pascuala can do is keep trying to convince people to get vaccinated and she’s focusing her efforts on those who leave the village, like truck drivers. But until everyone is vaccinated, she can only put her trust in other powers.

“Thanks to God we live in a community where there are still trees, and where the air is still clean,” she says. “I think in some way, Mother Earth is protecting us.”

#AceHealthDesk report ……..Published: July.21: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#mexico-city, #vaccines

(LONDON) Parliament #Coronavirus Report: Amid England’s reopening, UK Vaccines Minister Nadhim Zahawi has revealed that proof of full inoculation against #COVID19 will soon be needed to enter clubs and big venues, and a booster shot programme is in the works #AceHealthDesk report

#AceNewsReport – July.20: Monday marked the long-anticipated reopening of England’s bars and clubs, and the dropping of most of the coronavirus restrictions that had been in place since last year. However, the government will soon make vaccination mandatory to enter these establishments, Zahawi announced on Monday.

#CoronavirusNewsDesk says Booster shots coming, vaccines will be MANDATORY for nightclubs, UK govt announces today in Parliament …as cases like this rise and daily cases soar …..

19 Jul, 2021 17:28 

Booster shots coming, vaccines will be MANDATORY for nightclubs, UK govt announces

“Vaccination holds the key for doing the things we love,” he told Parliament. “We plan to make full vaccination a condition of entry to nightclubs and other venues where large crowds gather. Proof of a negative test will no longer be sufficient.”

By September, Zahawi stated, every adult in the UK will have been given the opportunity to get fully vaccinated.

Zahawi had a different opinion on so-called ‘vaccine passports’ only a few months ago. Back in February he called such passes “discriminatory,” and told the BBC“That’s not how we do things. We do them by consent.”

In a BBC appearance shortly after Zahawi’s speech, Prime Minister Boris Johnson made the vaccination-only policy official, repeating the minister’s words verbatim.

“Proof of a negative test will no longer be enough”UK PM Boris Johnson says that after all over-18s have had the chance to get both Covid jabs, full vaccination will be required for entry into “nightclubs and other venues where large crowds gather”https://t.co/EZJkjkCXF1pic.twitter.com/q0UpIP3Hmr— BBC News (UK) (@BBCNews) July 19, 2021

With the efficacy of vaccines against the more contagious Delta variant of the coronavirus being questioned in some countries, Zahawi also told lawmakers that the government is drawing up plans to administer vaccine booster shots. Trials for such shots are already underway, and before his resignation last month, then-Health Secretary Matt Hancock said that a nationwide programme of booster jabs will likely be rolled out in autumn.

For the moment, children will be exempt from vaccination unless they suffer from pre-existing conditions, Zahawi said on Monday.

“We will be offering even more vulnerable people the protection that a vaccine brings and we will all be safer as a result,” he said, after the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation released new guidance stating that only children with severe neurodisabilities, Down’s syndrome, immunosuppression, and profound and multiple learning disabilities will be given the jab.

#AceHealthDesk report ……Published: July.20: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#covid19, #london, #parliament, #vaccines

(FRANCE) #Coronavirus Report: Health officials in areas of the country with relatively low vaccination rates are warning the public about an influx of unvaccinated patients who are becoming severely ill

#AceHealthReport – July.19: Over 100,000 people protested across France on Saturday against the government’s latest measures to push people to get vaccinated and curb rising infections by the delta variant of the #coronavirus

#CoronavirusNewsDesk says PARIS: Thousands of people marched around France to protest mandatory vaccinations for health care workers and #COVID19 passes that will be required to enter restaurants and other venues acording to AP

By CONSTANTIN GOUVY Associated Press: 17 July 2021, 21:47

CDC director: COVID-19 spreading among unvaccinated

In Paris, separate protest marches by the far-right and the far-left wound through different parts of the city. Demonstrations were also held in Strasbourg in the east, Lille in the north, Montpellier in the south and elsewhere.

Thousands of people answered calls to take to the streets by Florian Philippot, a fringe far-right politician and former right hand of Marine Le Pen who announced earlier this month that he would run in the 2022 presidential election. Gathered a stone’s throw away from the Louvre Museum, protesters chanted “Macron, clear off!”, “Freedom,” and banged metal spoons on saucepans.

While Philippot has organized small but regular protests against the government’s handling of the coronavirus crisis, Saturday’s demonstration drew a larger and more diverse crowd of people broadly disaffected with politics: yellow vest activists angry over perceived economic injustice, far-right supporters, medical staff and royalists.

They denounced the government’s decision on Monday to make vaccinescompulsory for all health care workers, and to require a “health pass” proving people are fully vaccinated, have recently tested negative or recovered from the virus in order to access restaurants and other public venues. President Emmanuel Macron’s government is presenting a draft law Monday to enshrine the measures.

“I will never get vaccinated,” Bruno Auquier, a 53-year-old town councilor who lives on the outskirts of Paris. “People need to wake up,” he said, questioning the safety of the vaccine.

While France already requires several vaccinations to enter public school, Auquier pledged to take his two children out of school if the coronavirus vaccine became mandatory. “These new measures are the last straw,” Auquier said.

The government warned of the continued spread of the delta variant, which authorities fear could again put pressure on hospitals if not enough people are vaccinated against the virus. The pandemic has cost France more than 111,000 lives and deeply damaged the economy.

During a visit to a pop-up vaccination center in the southwest, Prime Minister Jean Castex exhorted the French to stick together in order to overcome the crisis.

“There is only one solution: vaccination,” he said, stressing it “protects us, and will make us freer.”

At the Paris protest, a manual worker in his sixties expressed bitterness about jobs in his sector sent offshore. A 24-year-old royalist said he was there to demand “the return of God and the King.”

Lucien, a 28-year-old retail shop manager, said he wasn’t anti-vaccine, but thought that everyone should be able to do as they please with their own body. “The government is going too far,” he said. His 26-year-old friend Elise said, “I am vaccinated against diphtheria, tetanus, and polio. But the COVID vaccine is just too experimental.”

While a majority of French health care workers have had at least one vaccine dose, some are resisting the government’s decision to make vaccination compulsory for all staff in medical facilities.

At Saturday’s Paris protest, a 39-year-old green party supporter and hospital laboratory worker said she might resort to buying a fake vaccination certificate to avoid losing her job. A health care worker dressed as the Statue of Liberty called it “act of violence” to force people to get vaccinated.

In Montpellier, more than 1,000 people marched to the train station, chanting “Liberty!” and carrying signs reading “Our kids aren’t Guinea pigs.” Security officials closed the main entrance to travelers and a dozen police officers took posts in front.

The Interior Ministry said 114,000 people took part in protests nationwide.

Overnight on Friday, vandals ransacked a vaccination center in the southeast. Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin asked prefects and police chiefs to reinforce security for elected officials, after several complained they had received threats in recent days over the latest anti-COVID measures.

Vaccine hesitancy is considered widespread in France, though appears to have faded somewhat as 36 million French people have gotten coronavirus vaccine doses in recent months. Millions more have gotten injected or signed up for vaccinations since Monday’s announcement.

French health care workers have until Sept. 15 to get vaccinated. The requirement for COVID passes for all restaurants, bars, hospitals, shopping malls, trains, planes and other venues is being introduced in stages starting Wednesday.

Meanwhile, the French government announced tightened border controls starting Sunday, but also said it would allow in travelers from anywhere in the world who have been fully vaccinated.

That now includes people who received AstraZeneca’s Indian-manufactured vaccine. The move came after a global outcry over the fact that the European Union’s COVID-19 certificate only recognizes AstraZeneca vaccines manufactured in Europe.

———

Elaine Ganley in Montpellier and Angela Charlton in Paris contributed.

#AceHealthDesk report ……Published: July.19: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#france, #paris, #protestors, #vaccines

(LONDON) NIHR REPORT: 15 new studies across the UK will expand research into long #COVID to support thousands of vulnerable people, backed by nearly £20 million #AceHealthDesk report

#AceHealthReport – July.19: Thousands of people suffering with long COVID will benefit from new research programmes backed by £19.6 million to help better understand the condition, improve diagnosis and find new treatments.

#CoronavirusNewsDesk reports that DHSC Statement on New research into treatment and diagnosis of long #COVID with an extensive programme of 15 new research studies, backed by government funding through the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), will allow researchers across the UK to draw together their expertise from analysing long COVID among those suffering long-term effects and the health and care professionals supporting them.

  • 15 new studies across UK to expand research that will support thousands of vulnerable people
  • Nearly £20 million for research projects will help improve understanding of long COVID and identify effective treatments
  • Projects include the largest long COVID trial to date which will involve over 4,500 people

The latest research shows that although many people make a full recovery following COVID-19, a significant proportion of people continue to experience chronic symptoms for months. These ground breaking studies aim to help those people affected return to their normal lives.

The projects will focus on:

  • Better understanding the condition and identifying it
  • Evaluating the effectiveness of different care services
  • Better integrating specialist, hospital and community services for those suffering with long COVID
  • Identifying effective treatments, such as drugs, rehabilitation and recovery to treat people suffering from chronic symptoms
  • Improving home monitoring and self-management of symptoms, including looking at the impact of diet, and
  • Identifying and understanding the effect of particular symptoms of long COVID, such as breathlessness, reduced ability to exercise and brain fog

Health and Social Care Secretary, Sajid Javid, said:

Long COVID can have serious and debilitating long term effects for thousands of people across the UK which can make daily life extremely challenging.

This new research is absolutely essential to improve diagnosis and treatments and will be life-changing for those who are battling long-term symptoms of the virus.

It will build on our existing support with over 80 long COVID assessment services open across England as part of a £100 million expansion of care for those suffering from the condition and over £50 million invested in research to better understand the lasting effects of this condition.

Professor Nick Lemoine, Chair of NIHR’s long COVID funding committee and Medical Director of the NIHR Clinical Research Network (CRN), said:

This package of research will provide much needed hope to people with long-term health problems after COVID-19, accelerating development of new ways to diagnose and treat long COVID, as well as how to configure healthcare services to provide the absolute best care. Together with our earlier round of funding, NIHR has invested millions into research covering the full gamut of causes, mechanisms, diagnosis, treatment and rehabilitation of long COVID.

The selection process for this broad range of innovative studies into long COVID involved people with lived experience at every stage and their input has been invaluable in shaping the outcome of this call and the research projects which will receive funding.

The projects include:

  • STIMULATE-ICP at University College London which will be the largest long COVID trial to date, recruiting more than 4,500 people with the condition. With £6.8 million of funding, the project will test the effectiveness of existing drugs to treat long COVID by measuring the effects of 3 months’ treatment, including on people’s symptoms, mental health and outcomes such as returning to work. It will also assess the use of MRI scans to help diagnose potential organ damage, as well as enhanced rehabilitation through an app to track their symptoms.
  • The immunologic and virologic determinants of long COVID at Cardiff University with nearly £800,000, which will look at the role of the immune system in long-term disease and whether overactive or impaired immune responses could drive long COVID by causing widespread inflammation.
  • ReDIRECT at University of Glasgow backed by nearly £1 million, which will assess whether a weight management programme can reduce symptoms of long COVID in people who are overweight or obese.
  • LOCOMOTION at University of Leeds with £3.4 million, which focuses on identifying and promoting the most effective care, from accurate assessments in long COVID clinics to the best advice and treatment in surgeries, as well as home monitoring methods that can show flare-ups of symptoms. The research aims to establish a gold standard of care that can be shared across England and the rest of the UK.
  • EXPLAIN at University of Oxford backed by £1.8 million, which will seek to diagnose ongoing breathlessness in people with COVID-19 who were not admitted to hospital, using MRI scans to trace inhaled gas moving into and out of the lungs to assess their severity and whether they improve over time.

UK Government Minister for Scotland Iain Stewart said:

Long Covid is a terrible illness affecting thousands of people across the UK, and as it’s such a new disease, there’s still a lot we don’t know about it.

This UK Government funding, which is supporting studies led by the University of Glasgow and University of the West of Scotland, will help us make progress in understanding long Covid and hopefully improve treatment and support for patients right across the UK.

UK Government Minister for Wales Simon Hart said:

The development and distribution of the vaccine means we can now see an end to the pandemic and Wales has played a significant part via Wrexham’s Wockhardt facility where the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine continues to be produced.

Following this investment I hope Cardiff University can play a similarly important role in understanding and countering the long-term effects of the virus as we emerge from the pandemic.

Supportive quotes

Professor Amitava Banerjee, Associate Professor in Clinical Data Science and Honorary Consultant Cardiologist, University College London, Chief investigator of the STIMULATE-ICP (Symptoms, trajectory, inequalities and management: understanding long COVID to address and transform existing integrated care pathways) trial, said:

Individuals with long COVID have long been asking for recognition, research and rehabilitation. In our two-year study across six clinical sites around England, we will be working with patients, health professionals, scientists across different disciplines, as well as industry partners, to test and evaluate a new ‘integrated care’ pathway from diagnosis to rehabilitation, and potential drug treatments in the largest trial to-date. We will also be trying to improve inequalities in access to care and investigating how long COVID compares with other long-term conditions in terms of use of healthcare and burden of disease, which will help to plan services.

Dr Dennis Chan, Principal Research Fellow, Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, University College London, Chief investigator of the CICERO (Cognitive Impairment in long COVID: PhEnotyping and RehabilitatiOn) project, said:

Cognitive impairment, referred to informally as ‘brain fog’, is a major component of long COVID that compromises people’s daily activities and ability to return to work. The aim of this study is twofold; first, to understand better the nature of this ‘cognitive COVID’ in terms of the cognitive functions affected and the associated brain imaging changes, and second, to test whether neuropsychological rehabilitation can improve people’s outcomes. If this study is successful we will not only understand much better the way in which COVID affects the brain but also provide NHS services with new tools to help people recover from their cognitive difficulties.

Professor Fergus Gleeson, Professor of Radiology and Consultant Radiologist, Oxford University, Chief Investigator of EXPLAIN (HypErpolarised Xenon Magnetic Resonance PuLmonary Imaging in PAtIeNts with Long-COVID) project, said:

Following on from our earlier work using hyperpolarised xenon MRI in patients following hospitalisation with COVID-19 pneumonia, where we showed that their lungs may be damaged even when all other tests were normal, it is critical to determine how many patients with long COVID and breathlessness have damaged lungs, and if and how long it takes for their lungs to recover.

Hyperpolarised xenon MRI is a safe scanning test that requires the patient to lie in the MRI scanner and breathe in one litre of the inert gas xenon that has been hyperpolarised so that we can see it using MRI. The scan takes a few minutes and does not require radiation exposure, so it may be repeated over time to see lung changes. Using this technique, we can see the xenon – which behaves in a very similar way to oxygen – move from the lungs into the blood stream. In this way, we can see if there has been damage to the airways in the lungs, or to the areas where oxygen crosses into the blood stream, which appears to be the area damaged by COVID-19.

Background information

  • The projects were funded following a UK-wide research call for ambitious and comprehensive research into understanding and addressing the longer term physical and mental health effects of COVID-19 in non-hospitalised people and will build on the existing research already commissioned to look at long COVID.
  • In February 2021, 4 projects funded by NIHR and UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) were announced, following the first research call.
  • The UK began the commissioning of long COVID research in 2020 and some projects are already producing results that are informing the understanding of long COVID. This research call adds to the existing investment of over £30 million of research funding taking the total investment to £50 million.
  • The National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) has issued official guidance on best practice for recognising, investigating and rehabilitating patients with long COVID. According to NICE guidance, ‘long COVID describes signs and symptoms that continue or develop after acute COVID-19. It includes both ongoing symptomatic COVID-19 (from 4 to 12 weeks) and post-COVID-19 syndrome (12 weeks or more).’
  • In October 2020, NHS England and Improvement launched a 5 point plan for long COVID. There are now 89 specialist post COVID-19 clinics operating in England.
  • On 15 June 2021, NHSEI published a new 10 point plan and announced an additional £100 million expansion of care for patients with long COVID.

Annex A: Study summaries

Developing and testing the best ways to diagnose, treat and provide rehabilitation for people with long COVID

Dr Amitava Bannerjee, University College of London – £6.8m The wide-ranging symptoms of long COVID are debilitating and need coordinated care from specialists, hospitals and community services. The STIMULATE-ICP (Symptoms, trajectory, inequalities and management: understanding long COVID to address and transform existing integrated care pathways) trial, developed with the help of patient organisations, will be the largest long COVID trial to date, recruiting more than 4,500 people with the condition. This project will test the efficacy of existing drugs to treat long COVID, and measure the different effects of three months’ treatment on patients with regards to their symptoms, mental health and outcomes such as returning to work. It will also assess the use of MRI scans to help diagnose potential organ damage in those recovering from the coronavirus, as well as enhanced rehabilitation – the provision of joined-up specialist care centred around an app for patients allowing them to track their symptoms.

Optimising standards of care for long COVID in hospitals, doctors’ surgeries and at home

Dr Manoj Sivan, University of Leeds – £3.4m Although there are 83 long COVID clinics in England, most people have not had access to them, and face long waiting times to be seen. The LOCOMOTION (long COVID multidisciplinary consortium: optimising treatments and services across the NHS) project focuses on identifying and promoting the most effective care, ranging from accurate assessments in these clinics to the best advice and treatment in surgeries, as well as home monitoring methods that can show flare-ups of symptoms. Drawing from the experiences of current long COVID patients and NHS professionals, the research aims to establish a ‘gold standard’ of care that can be shared across England and the rest of the UK. Analysis will be conducted in 10 long COVID clinics, at home and in doctors’ surgeries, and the study will track referrals and evaluate different services through patient interviews to make sure they are efficient, accessible and cost-effective. Specialists in healthcare inequality will also ensure that views are sought and recorded from people who are not visiting clinics.

Explaining why long COVID patients experience breathlessness and a reduced ability to exercise

Professor Fergus Gleeson, University of Oxford – £1.8m One of the most prevalent and persistent symptoms among long COVID patients has been discomfort in breathing following physical activity. The EXPLAIN (Hyperpolarised xenon magnetic resonance pulmonary imaging in patients with Long-COVID) project will seek to diagnose ongoing breathlessness in coronavirus patients who were not admitted to hospital, using MRI scans to trace inhaled gas moving into and out of the lungs. A 15-minute scan using low levels of xenon gas will display lung function and – if abnormalities are found – comparisons of data across different groups of participants recruited from Oxford and Sheffield can help assess their severity and whether they improve over time. Some EXPLAIN patients will also have a separate scan to see if heart damage can be identified. If the MRI scans separate patients with and without lung disease, further CT scans can be analysed, using artificial intelligence and blood samples to identify associated conditions and inform the development of treatments.

Understanding and treating ‘brain fog’

Dr Dennis Chan, University College London – £1.2m Up to three quarters of people who experience long-term symptoms after COVID-19 report problems with memory, attention or other cognitive functions – symptoms known collectively as ‘brain fog’. The CICERO (Cognitive Impairment in long COVID: PhEnotyping and RehabilitatiOn) project will first determine which elements of brain function are most affected in people with long COVID. The relationship between brain function and other symptoms of long COVID, such as fatigue and anxiety, will be explored, and MRI scanning will be used to identify the affected brain networks. The researchers will then develop and test a new rehabilitation strategy to help people recover from the cognitive aspects of long COVID and return to normal life and working ability. This will support production of a freely available COVID-19 Cognitive Recovery Guide on how best to offer the new rehabilitation approach depending on the patient’s symptoms.

Co-designing personalised self-management for patients at home

Professor Fiona Jones, Kingston University – £1.1m Long COVID describes more than 200 different symptoms that can interact and fluctuate. Although fatigue and problems with brain function are the most common symptoms, each patient can experience a different set of symptoms. The LISTEN (Long COVID Personalised Self-managemenT support – co-design and EvaluatioN) project will work in partnership with people who have long COVID to design and evaluate a package of self-management support that can be personalised to individual needs. The researchers will first work with people living with or recovered from long COVID, plus a social enterprise with expertise in reaching seldom heard populations, to design the package and associated patient and training resources. The team will then test the self-management package alongside up to six one-to-one virtual coaching sessions from trained rehabilitation practitioners, to test whether the treatment improves how people with long COVID feel and how they cope with everyday activities. The researchers will also evaluate how the package could be implemented more widely, with the aim that self-management for people with long COVID can be delivered at scale.

ReDIRECT: Remote Diet Intervention to Reduce long Covid symptoms Trial

Dr David Blane, University of Glasgow – £999,679

The immunologic and virologic determinants of long COVID

Professor David Price, Cardiff University – £774,457

Quality-of-life in patients with long COVID: harnessing the scale of big data to quantify the health and economic costs

Dr Rosalind Eggo, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine – £674,679

Percutaneous Auricular Nerve Stimulation for Treating Post-COVID Fatigue (PAuSing-Post-COVID Fatigue)

Dr Mark Baker, Newcastle University – £640,180

Immune analysis of long COVID to inform rational choices in diagnostic testing and therapeutics

Professor Daniel Altmann, Imperial College – £573,769

Understanding and using family experiences of managing long COVID to support self care and timely access to services

Professor Sue Ziebland, University of Oxford – £557,674

Development of a robust T cell assay to retrospectively diagnose SARS-CoV-2 infection and IFN-γ release assay as diagnostic and monitoring assay in Long COVID patients

Dr Mark Wills, University of Cambridge – £372,864

Using Activity Tracking and Just-In-Time Messaging to Improve Adaptive Pacing: A Pragmatic Randomised Control Trial

Professor Nicholas Sculthorpe, University of the West of Scotland – £317,416

Impact of COVID-19 vaccination on preventing long COVID: a population-based cohort study using linked NHS data

Professor Daniel Prieto-Alhambra, University of Oxford – £224,344

Long COVID Core Outcome Set (LC-COS) project

Dr Tim Nicholson, King’s College London – £139,619

#AceHealthDesk report ……Published: July.19: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#covid19, #dhsc, #press-release, #u-k-london

(LONDON) GOVUK Press Release Statement Report: Change made to travel that anyone arriving from France will need to continue with quarantine for 10-days #AceHealthDesk report

#AceHealthReport – July17: Anyone arriving from France to England must continue to quarantine for 10 days, at home or in other accommodation, even if they are fully vaccinated against #COVID19.

#CoronavirusNewsDesk reports today that arrivals from France to England must continue to quarantine for 10 days at home or in other accommodation, even if they are fully vaccinated against #COVID19 and only existing amber list exemptions for key workers including hauliers will remain in place.

  • Measures for arrivals from France will remain in place from 19 July
  • Arrivals from France must continue to quarantine in their own accommodation for 10 days and complete a day 2 and day 8 test, regardless of vaccination status

From Monday 19 July, UK residents arriving from amber countries who are fully vaccinated will no longer have to quarantine, although they will still need to comply with necessary testing requirements. However, this will not apply to France following the persistent presence of cases in France of the Beta variant, which was first identified in South Africa.

Anyone who has been in France in the last 10 days will need to quarantine on arrival to England in their own accommodation and will need a Day 2 and Day 8 test, regardless of their vaccination status. This includes any fully vaccinated individual who transits through France from either a green or another amber country to reach England. The Test to Release scheme remains an option for travellers to shorten their quarantine period should they test negative after day 5.

Some operators may make specific arrangements compliant with the public health regulations that allow for transit without quarantine, for example those travelling by train from Belgium, so travellers should check with their operator.

Public health remains the government’s top priority. It has been clear that swift action will be taken on travel list allocations should the data show that a country’s risk to England has changed, including France.

While current cases of the Beta variant in France are not high enough to require arrivals to enter managed quarantine, it is important to consider the potential detection and transmission risk in light of the current situation in England. As a precautionary measure to protect the gains made in the UK’s vaccination programme, and as the country unlocks, anyone arriving from France to England will continue to quarantine for 10 days from early Monday morning, while we continue to assess the latest data and track prevalence of the Beta variant.

Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid said:

We have always been clear that we will not hesitate to take rapid action at our borders to stop the spread of COVID-19 and protect the gains made by our successful vaccination programme.

With restrictions lifting on Monday across the country, we will do everything we can to ensure international travel is conducted as safely as possible, and protect our borders from the threat of variants.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said:

Travel will be different this year and whilst we are committed to continuing to open up international travel safely, our absolute priority is to protect public health here in the UK.

We urge everyone thinking about going abroad this summer to check their terms and conditions as well as the travel restrictions abroad before they go.

UK Health Security Agency Chief Executive Dr Jenny Harries said:

As we ease restrictions and begin making our way back to a normal life, it’s more vital than ever that we listen to the data and act decisively when it changes.

While vaccines are helping us turn the tables against this virus, we need to continue to proceed cautiously. That means maintaining our defences against new variants and protecting our hard won progress through the exceptional vaccination rollout.

For those without an exemption, these rules will continue to apply to all arrivals from France into England, including those who live and work overseas, diplomats, and participants in authorised UK COVID-19 vaccine trials, as well as those who are under the age of 18.

Before travelling to England, everyone needs to take a pre-departure test, and fill in a passenger locator form, regardless of where they are coming from. Anyone not complying with health measures could face a fine, and carriers will be required to ensure proper checks are carried out.

#AceHealthDesk report ………Published: July.17: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#coronavirusnewsdeskreports, #govuk, #health, #london, #press-relase

(JAPAN) #Coronavirus Report: Just one week out from the #Olympics host city Tokyo has reported its highest number of new #COVID19 cases in almost six months #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – July.15: The surging numbers came on the same day that International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach paid a courtesy call in Tokyo on Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga….

#CoronavirusNewsDesk – Tokyo’s #COVID19 infections reach six-month high as athletes told to put on their own Olympic medals acording to Mr Suga and Mr Bach have both pledged that the Tokyo Olympics will be “safe and secure” despite the Games opening with Tokyo and neighbouring prefectures under a government-imposed state of emergency as Health Officials reported 1,149 new cases on Wednesday, the highest since 1,184 were reported almost six months ago on January 22.

A Japanese man in a face mask holds an umbrella while walking down a Tokyo street
Tokyo is under a state of emergency with COVID cases rising as the Olympics draw ever closer.(Reuters: Kim Kyung-Hoon)

The new fiures also marked the 25th straight day that cases were higher than they were a week earlier.

Mr Suga asked Mr Bach to ensure that the Olympics will be safe, particularly for the Japanese public, of which fewer than 20 per cent are fully vaccinated.

“To gain the understanding of our people, and also for the success of the Tokyo 2020 Games, it is absolutely necessary that all participants take appropriate actions and measures including countermeasures against the pandemic,” Mr Suga told Mr Bach.

“As the host of the Games, I do hope that the IOC will make the efforts so that all athletes and stakeholders will fully comply with these measures.”

International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach meets Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga
IOC President Thomas Bach (left) met Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga ahead of the Olympics.(AP: Kimimasa Mayama)

Mr Bach replied: “We’d like to reaffirm all our commitment on the side of the Olympic community to do everything, that we do not bring any risks to the Japanese people.”

Mr Bach told the Prime Minister that 85 per cent of the athletes and officials living in the Olympic Village on Tokyo Bay will be fully vaccinated.Tokyo Olympics to still go aheadTokyo’s Olympics chief says Japan remains committed to holding a safe games despite a surge of COVID-19 cases in the country.

He said almost 100 per cent of IOC members and IOC staff were “vaccinated or immune.” The IOC also says between 70-80 per cent of international medical representatives were vaccinated.

The IOC and Tokyo organisers last week banned fans from all venues in Tokyo and three neighbouring prefectures. A few outlying venues will allow some spectators, and fans from abroad were banned month ago.

About 11,000 athletes and tens of thousands of others will enter Japan for the Olympics. The Paralympics will add about 4,400 more athletes.

Japan has attributed about 15,000 deaths to COVID-19, a number low by many standards but not as good as most of its Asian neighbours.

The Olympic torch relay has also been pulled from Tokyo streets, with the Tokyo government fearing the relay would draw crowds and circulate the virus.

The opening ceremony is July 23 at Tokyo’s new $1.8 billion National Stadium.

Mr Bach is expected to travel Friday to Hiroshima, and his Australian vice-President John Coates to Nagasaki to use those two cities as backdrops for promoting the Games.

Olympics to be ‘well-appreciated’, IOC boss says

Mr Bach arrived in Tokyo last week and spent the first three days self-isolating in the five-star hotel that the IOC uses for its headquarters in Tokyo.

The IOC is pushing ahead with the Olympics, despite opposition in much of the Japanese medical community, partly because it is dependent for almost 75 per cent of its income on the sale of broadcasting rights.

A person in a white t-shirt bearing the Tokyo Olympics logo holding the golden Olympic torch
IOC President Thomas Bach said Japanese people will “have to gain confidence” from the protective measures in place at the games.(AP: Thanassis Stavrakis)

Mr Bach later acknowledged the IOC “always knew that there is this skepticism” among the Japanese people but that they “have to gain confidence” from the protective measures in place.

“You have already seen in the last couple of weeks it’s changing slowly but surely,” the IOC leader told international media in a conference call.

“When the athletes finally compete this will be well-appreciated here by the Japanese people.”

Mr Bach also revealed he had doubts “every day” about the Games going ahead in the 15 months since they were postponed but to voice them would have disrupted athletes preparing to qualify and compete.

“The challenge was that you could not speak about this,” he said.

“This could or would have become a self-fulfilling prophecy. They (athletes) trusted us.”

Meanwhile, a coronavirus cluster emerged at a hotel where dozens of Brazilian Olympic team members are staying. 

Seven staff at the hotel in Hamamatsu city, southwest of Tokyo, had tested positive for the coronavirus, an official said.

But a 31-strong Brazilian Olympic delegation, which includes judo athletes, are in a “bubble” in the hotel and separated from other guests and have not been infected.

The Russian women’s rugby sevens team were also in isolation after their masseur tested positive for COVID-19, the RIA news agency reported from Moscow — as was part of the South African men’s rugby team after a case on their inbound flight.

Participants to put on their own medals

In another measure aimed at preventing the the spread of COVID-19, athletes will put their medals around their own necks.

“The medals will not be given around the neck,” Mr Bach told international media on a conference call from Tokyo.

Womens_K4_Team
Athletes may not be socially distanced during events but they will be from anyone presenting medals.(Supplied: Shannon Reynolds)

“They will be presented to the athlete on a tray and then the athlete will take the medal him or herself.”

“It will be made sure that the person who will put the medal on tray will do so only with disinfected gloves so that the athlete can be sure that nobody touched them before,” Mr Bach added.

Mr Bach confirmed that “there will be no hand shakes and there will be no hugs there during the ceremony”.

Olympic medals are typically presented by an IOC member or a leading official in a sport’s governing body.

The IOC had previously said medalists and ceremony officials would have to wear masks.

AP/Reuters

#AceNewsDesk report ……Published: July.15: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#health, #japan

(LONDON) #Coronvirus Report: More than 1,200 scientists are urging the government to halt the lifting of #COVID19 rules in less than a week and called the move ‘unethical’ amid soaring cases numbers #AceHealthDesk report

#CoronavirusNewsDesk – PM statement at coronavirus press conference: 12 July 2021 as he confirms ending England lockdown on July 19 with #COVID19 cases estimated to rise to 100,000 but are as of todays date 14th July standing at …..

Having risen by around 8,000 in one day details below …..

People walk in the street wearing face masks

On July 19 a raft of #Coronavirus restrictions are set to be lifted including legal requirements on wearing masks and the ‘rule of six’ for meeting indoors and signatories said in the statement that the planned relaxation ‘involves recklessly exposing millions to the acute and long-term impacts of mass infection.’

(Image: AFP via Getty Images)

A ban on nightclubs opening is also set to be scrapped.

It comes amid a surge in new infections with the highest daily rate seen since January, when the nation was once again plunged into lockdown.

With just days to go before the relaxation of more restrictions a group of doctors and health experts wrote to medical journal The Lancet to raise their concerns over the planned changes.Most lockdown restrictions will end on Monday(

The group said: “We believe this is a terrible mistake.

“This strategy is already putting intense pressure on struggling healthcare services and will lead to many avoidable deaths and long-term illness.

“The narrative of ‘caution, vigilance and personal responsibility’ is an abdication of the government’s fundamental duty to protect public health.

“‘Personal responsibility’ does not work in the face of an airborne, highly-contagious infectious disease.The group warned easing restrictions now was ‘a mistake'(Image: Getty Images)

“Infectious diseases are a matter of collective, rather than individual responsibility.”

More than 1,200 scientists have signed a letter to the Lancet setting out why they believe allowing mass infection in the summer is a ‘dangerous and unethical experiment’.

Dr Mike Ryan, Executive Director of the WHO Health Emergencies Programme, called a strategy of letting infection spread through a population “moral emptiness and epidemiological stupidity”.

Latest government figures reveal that more than 36,000 new cases were recorded on Tuesday, with daily cases numbers topping 30,000 every day over the last week.

It’s the highest tally since January. There were 50 deaths recorded yesterday, which is a relatively lower figure than from earlier this year.

Confirming the planned relaxation earlier Health Secretary Sajid Javidtold MPs there will “never be a perfect time” to lift the restrictions, and added: “To those who say ‘why take this step now’ I say ‘if not now, when?'” 

Despite admitting cases could soar to 100,000 per day later in the summer, Mr Javid said the vaccine programme would prevent a surge in deaths and hospitalisations.

Nearly 46 million first doses of a Covid vaccine have so far been administered, as well as nearly 35 million second shots.

#AceHealthDesk report …….Published: July.15: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#london

(SOUTH KOREA) #Coronavirus Report: Seoul posted its highest ever number of new daily #COVID19 infections within 24 hours, the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency has said, in a third consecutive day of record high new infections #AceHealthDesk report

#AceHealthReport – July.11: Starting on Monday, #coronavirus curbs will be tightened to the strictest level possible in Seoul and neighbouring regions for the first time:

#CoronavirusNewsDesk says that Seoul is preparing for strictest measures and lockdown starting on Monday after the country reported 1,378 new #COVID19 cases as of midnight on Friday, up from Thursday’s record of 1,316 and rising for the first time in neighbouring regions with about 11% of 52 million people having completed vaccination, including receiving both shots for vaccines requiring two doses, while 30% have received one dose, KDCA said in a statement according to Telegram Reuters Wire report

COVID19 REPORT:

People wait in line for a coronavirus disease (COVID-19) test at a testing site which is temporarily set up at a railway station in Seoul, South Korea, July 7, 2021. REUTERS/ Heo Ran

South Korea has so far fared better than many industrialised nations in infections and deaths, with a mortality rate of 1.22% and the number of severe cases at 148 as of Friday, which is much lower than the previous peak in late December.

However the rising trend has prompted a warning that new case numbers may nearly double by the end of July.

That has led to tougher curbs by the government including people being advised to stay home as much as possible and social gatherings restricted to two people after 6pm from four earlier in the day.

The country aims to reach herd immunity before November by inoculating 70% of the public with at least one shot by September.

South Korea’s total Covid-19 infections to date stand at 166,722 with 2,038 deaths.

The Delta variant is responsible for a growing wave of new cases in the region, which had previously managed the pandemic with some success, and the slow pace of vaccinations in countries including South Korea, Australia and Thailand is causing concern.

#AceHealthDesk report ………Published: July.11: 2021:

#AceHealthDesk report ………Published: July.11: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#south-korea

(NEW YORK) Stock Market Report: Wall Street’s main indexes fell on Thursday as the spread of the #COVID19 Delta variant cast doubts over an economic recovery, while a rout in Chinese tech stocks appeared to have spilled across markets #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – July.10: Investors globally turned wary of risk. Equities fell and bond prices rallied on worries about Beijing’s crackdown on foreign-listed Chinese firms and a sustained global economic recovery.

#CoronavirusNewsDesk – NEW YORK: Wall Street main indexes fall on economic growth over #COVID19 Delta Variant worries as crackdown on firms wipes $831 billion off Chinese tech stocks

Chinese Stockmarket Board

China News: July.08, 2021

Punch Reports: Chinese Stockmarket Board

China’s technology giants have seen a combined $823bn wiped from their market value since a February peak as the Xi Jinping-led government expands its crackdown, fueling continual sell-offs.

Bloomberg reported that Chinese authorities issued a sweeping warning to the nation’s biggest companies on Tuesday, and vowed to tighten oversight of data security and overseas listings just days after Didi Global Inc.’s contentious decision to go public in the United States.

The actions of the government has put further selling pressure on China’s biggest technology names including Tencent Holdings Ltd., Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., JD.Com Inc., Baidu Inc. and Meituan.

Paul Pong, managing director at Pegasus Fund Managers Ltd, was quoted by Bloomberg as saying, “The selling will continue in the third quarter.”

He said that he sold two-thirds of his technology stock holdings, including in Tencent and Alibaba, in May. “The measures from authorities will keep coming,” Pong added.

The losses have come from ten firms including three US-listed names. Didi’s ADRs fell 20 per cent on Tuesday, erasing about $15bn of its market value.

The Hang Seng Tech Index, whose members include many of China’s biggest tech companies, fell as much as 1.9 per cent before paring losses to 0.6 per cent on Wednesday, marking its sixth consecutive day of declines.

Tencent slid 1.9 per cent, among the biggest decliners on the Hang Seng Index. Alibaba dropped 1.7 per cent, while Meituan fell 1.3 per cent.

China’s sweeping warning on Tuesday followed the opening of a security review by the nation’s internet regulator last week into Didi and a demand for app stores to remove it.

The move stunned investors and industry executives and has hammered the Hong Kong shares of peers such as Tencent, which is one of Didi’s largest backers.

Stocks that led much of Wall Street’s rally this year and those that stand to benefit the most from an economic rebound were under pressure, with cyclical players including financials (.SPSY) and materials (.SPLRCM) leading declines among the 11 major S&P 500 sectors.

The S&P 500 banks (.SPXBK) fell 1.0%, tracking a fall in the 10-year Treasury yield to 1.25%.

The FAANG group, whose value rests heavily on future earnings, dropped between 0.7% and 1.3%. It had sent the Nasdaq and S&P 500 to record highs in the previous session.

Click here to read more.
Source: Reuters, Ambar Warrick, Devik Jain

#AceNewsDesk report ………..Published: July.10: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#new-york

(WASHINGTON) #Coronavirus FULL Report – Delta variant surges as Biden prepares to ramp up vaccinations in five areas including door-to-door outreach for health & care-workers #AceHealthDesk report

#AceHealthReport – July.07: Amid concerns over the spread of the delta variant, President Joe Biden is set to deliver remarks Tuesday afternoon about the state of his administration’s vaccination effort and the “strong progress” the U.S. has made as it nears 160 million people fully vaccinated by the week’s end, a White House official said.

#CoronavirusNewsDesk – Biden will outline five areas his team is focusing on to ramp up vaccination efforts, including door-to-door outreach, a larger emphasis on sending vaccines to health care providers and pediatricians who can encourage adolescents to get shots as part of their “back to school” check-ups and expanding mobile clinics and vaccination sites for workers, according to the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity to preview the president’s address.

USA News Today: Show Caption

The remarks will come after Biden is briefed by members of his COVID-19 response team. About 157 million Americans and 58% of U.S. adults have been fully vaccinated so far, and 67% of adults have had at least one vaccine shot – falling short of Biden’s goal to have 70% of U.S. adults receive at least one jab by July 4.

– Courtney Subramanian

Also in the news:

►About 7,550 out of 19.5 million fully vaccinated Californians have contracted the coronavirus, a rate of infection of one in 2,582 that’s a testament to the vaccines’ effectiveness, according to an analysis by CalMatters of state data through June 23.

►Hundreds of Italian health care workers have sued local health authorities to avoid being suspended after they refused to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

►Fourteen people have been arrested in Mumbai, India, in connection with a scheme to administer fake COVID-19 vaccines to thousands of people, who actually got injected with salt water.

►Prime Minister Boris Johnson says people in England will no longer be required by law to wear face masks in indoor public spaces and to keep at least 3 feet apart as soon as July 19, the country’s so-called “Freedom Day.”

►Germany will ease strict rules on travel from Britain, Portugal, Russia, India and Nepal that were imposed because of a surge in cases from the delta variant.

📈Today’s numbers: The U.S. has more than 33.7 million confirmed COVID-19 cases and more than 605,500 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University data. The global totals: More than 184.2 million cases and nearly 3.98 million deaths. More than 157.3  million Americans have been fully vaccinated – 47.4% of the population, according to the CDC.

📘What we’re reading: Since the beginning of the pandemic, a third of the 64 people who oversee the nation’s vaccination programs have left. In the midst of the largest vaccination effort in the country’s history, the nation lost a staggering amount of institutional knowledge. Read the full story.

Keep refreshing this page for the latest news. Want more? Sign up for our Coronavirus Watch newsletter for updates to your inbox and join our Facebook group.

Infections rising in nearly half of states

COVID-19 cases were up in nearly half of U.S. states, a USA TODAY Network analysis of Johns Hopkins University data shows. Alaska and Arkansas more than doubled cases in just the last week. South Carolina and Kansas are up more than 50%. 

In Missouri, the number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients jumped by nearly 30% over the Fourth of July weekend in a hard-hit area where immunization rates are low, leading to a temporary ventilator shortage and a public call for help from respiratory therapists. The delta variant, first identified in India, is spreading rapidly throughout the state, straining hospitals in Springfield and raising fresh fears that the situation could soon grow worse as holiday gatherings seed fresh cases. Missouri leads the nation with the most new cases per capita in the past 14 days; 39.4% of residents there are fully vaccinated.

COVID-19 cases in Mississippi increased by almost 15% in June. Mississippi’s fully vaccinated rate of 31% is the lowest in the nation.

“It feels very reminiscent of where we were in an early part of the pandemic,” State Epidemiologist Paul Byers said during a June 29 press conference. “It feels like we’re in the same situation now with the delta variant.”

As Olympics approach, Japan grapples with low vaccination rate, rising cases

With the beginning of the Summer Olympics a mere 17 days away, the host country of Japan has fully vaccinated less than 14% of its population against COVID-19, as a recent inoculation push has been undercut by supply shortages.Organizers have steadfastly resisted calls for canceling or postponing the Tokyo Games, scheduled to start July 23, and concerns are starting to turn into actual problems.Gaps in border controls have emerged, highlighted by the discovery of infections among the newly arrived team from Uganda and positive tests for the highly contagious delta variant. As cases grow in Tokyo, so have fears that the influx of tens of thousands of visitors – even with foreign spectators banned – will spread the virus.“We must stay on high alert,” Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga told reporters Thursday.  Noting the rising caseloads, he said “having no (domestic) spectators is a possibility.”

More than 60 Indonesians die after Java hospital runs out of oxygen

More than 60 people died when a public hospital on Indonesia’s main island of Java ran out of oxygen as COVID rages around the country and oxygen supplies dwindle, said a senior health official.At least 63 coronavirus patients died during treatment in the hospital since Saturday – 33 of them when the central liquid oxygen supply ran out – even though the hospital switched to using oxygen cylinders during the outage, the official said. Medical oxygen comes in liquid and compressed forms. The oxygen supply was stabilized early Sunday morning.After a slow vaccination rollout, Indonesia is now racing to inoculate as many people as possible as it battles an explosion of COVID-19 cases that have strained its health care. But inadequate global supply of vaccines, the complicated geography of the world’s largest archipelago nation and hesitancy among some Indonesians stand as major roadblocks.

England sticks to plan for lifting restrictions on ‘Freedom Day’

Residents of England got reassurances Monday that plans for the July 19 “Freedom Day” remain in place, just as they were learning that Duchess Kate is self-isolating after coming in contact last week with a person who has tested positive for the coronavirus.

She has received both doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, and on Tuesday the British government said that self-isolating requirement will be scrapped Aug. 16 for those who are fully vaccinated.

The juxtaposition of the approaching end of COVID-19 restrictions in England with Prince William’s wife being confined to home for 10 days underscores one of the key messages British Prime Minister Boris Johnson delivered with Monday’s announcement:

“I want to stress from the outset that this pandemic is far from over,” he said in a news conference. “It certainly won’t be over by the 19th.”

Johnson pointed out there has been a marked increase in coronavirus cases and hospitalizations recently, and the number of new infections could rise to 50,000 per day by July 19.

Contributing: The Associated Press

#AceHealthDesk report ……Published: July.06: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#biden, #covid19, #health, #vaccination, #washington

(LONDON) FULL PHE Statement Report: Numbers of Delta (VOC-21APR-02) variant in the UK have risen by 50,824 since last week to a total of 161,981 #AceHealthDesk report

#AceHealthReport – July.04: Public Health England (PHE) releases weekly updates on the number of confirmed new cases of variants of concern and variants under investigation identified in the UK.

#CoronavirusNewsDesk reports that confirmed cases of #COVID19 variants identified in UK together with latest updates on the SARS-CoV-2 in full since December.

Latest update

PHE’s weekly COVID-19 variant cases data show that numbers of the Delta (VOC-21APR-02) variant in the UK have risen by 50,824 since last week to a total of 161,981. This represents a 46% increase. Of these, 42 are the Delta AY.1 sub lineage.

The Delta variant currently accounts for approximately 95% of cases that are sequenced across the UK.

Dr Jenny Harries, Chief Executive of the UK Health Security Agency said:

Cases across the UK continue to rise and it is incredibly important that we do not forget to be careful. The best thing we can do to protect ourselves and the people we love is to get the vaccine if eligible, get tested twice a week and practice ‘hands, face, space, fresh air’ at all times.

Although cases are rising, we are not seeing a proportional rise in the number of people who are being admitted to hospital. The data suggest this is testament to the success of the vaccination programme so far and clearly demonstrates the importance of getting both doses of the vaccine. Come forward as soon as you are eligible. It will help us to break the chain of transmission, and it will save lives.

Previous

Friday 25 June

Public Health England (PHE) releases weekly updates on the number of confirmed new cases of variants of concern and variants under investigation identified in the UK.

Delta cases continue to rise across the UK

PHE’s weekly COVID-19 variant cases data show that numbers of the Delta (VOC-21APR-02) variant in the UK have risen by 35,204 since last week to a total of 111,157. This represents a 46% increase. Of these, 42 are the Delta AY.1 sub lineage. The Delta variant now accounts for approximately 95% of cases that are sequenced across the UK.

PHE has also published the new edition of the variant technical briefingwhich continues to show that the vaccines continue to have a crucial effect on hospitalisation and death.

An additional 514 people were admitted to hospital in England with a diagnosis of COVID-19 in the week up to 21 June. Of these, 304 were unvaccinated.

Dr Jenny Harries, Chief Executive of the UK Health Security Agency said:

Through the success of our vaccination programme, data suggest we have begun to break the link between cases and hospitalisations. This is hugely encouraging news, but we cannot become complacent. Two doses of vaccine are far more effective against COVID-19 than a single dose, so please make sure that you come forward to get your second dose as soon as you are invited.

Whilst vaccines provide excellent protection, they do not provide total protection, so it is still as important as ever that we continue to exercise caution. Protect yourself and the people around you by working from home where possible, and by practising ‘hands, face, space, fresh air’ at all times.

New Variant Under Investigation

A further variant, Lambda (C.37) has been designated as a Variant Under Investigation (VUI) on 23 June due to international expansion and several notable mutations including L452Q and F490S. The World Health Organization (WHO) classified Lambda as a Variant of Interest on 14 June.

Six cases of Lambda have been identified across the country to date, all have been linked to overseas travel. The earliest documented sample was reported in Peru and Lambda has been sequenced in 26 countries to date.

There is currently no evidence that this variant causes more severe disease or renders the vaccines currently deployed any less effective. PHE is carrying out laboratory testing to better understand the impact of mutations on the behaviour of the virus.

All appropriate public health interventions will be undertaken, including additional contact tracing and targeted testing. Where cases have been identified, additional follow-up of cases, testing of contacts and if required targeted case finding will be deployed to limit its spread.

Issue affecting data collection

The Wellcome Sanger Institute is currently investigating an operational issue in the pre-sequencing process which caused potential cross-contamination of a number of positive COVID-19 samples and therefore a delay in retrieving sequencing results. However, these samples were PCRtested before they were transferred to the Sanger Institute meaning all citizens will have received their correct test result and positive cases will have already been contacted and asked to isolate.

As a result of this issue, around 12,000 samples have not been included in the total number published today, so this number of confirmed variants to date is likely to be an underestimate.

PHE scientists, together with experts from the Wellcome Sanger Institute, are reviewing this data to establish to what extent genomic information may be recoverable from those that were sequenced.

As well as whole genome sequencing, a new technology called genotype assays is being used in NHS Test and Trace laboratories to rapidly detect COVID-19 mutations that indicate a Variant of Concern (VOC). This means there is still VOC data available for health protection teams and other public health professionals, giving them the intelligence they need to monitor the spread of variants.

Friday 18 June

Public Health England (PHE) releases weekly updates on the number of confirmed new cases of variants of concern and variants under investigation identified in the UK.

Delta variant cases continue to rise

PHE’s weekly COVID-19 variant cases data show that numbers of the Delta (VOC-21APR-02) variant in the UK have risen by 33,630 since last week to a total of 75,953. The most recent data show 99% of sequenced and genotyped cases across the country are the Delta variant.

Data show an increased risk of hospitalisation with Delta compared to Alpha, although PHE’s analysis shows that 2 doses of vaccine gives a high degree of protection against hospitalisation, estimated to be more than 90%.

According to PHE’s latest variant technical briefing, as of 14 June, a total of 806 people have been hospitalised with the Delta variant, an increase of 423 since last week. Of these, 527 were unvaccinated, and only 84 of the 806 had received both doses.

PHE now publishes the number of deaths among people who have tested positive for Delta within the past 28 days. The case fatality rate remains low for Delta. However, deaths tend to happen some weeks after infection and the majority of cases were confirmed less than 28 days ago. It is therefore too early to judge the case fatality of Delta compared to Alpha or other variants.

Dr Jenny Harries, Chief Executive, UK Health Security Agency said:

Cases are rising rapidly across the country and the Delta variant is now dominant. The increase is primarily in younger age groups, a large proportion of which were unvaccinated but are now being invited to receive the vaccine. It is encouraging to see that hospitalisations and deaths are not rising at the same rate but we will continue to monitor it closely. The vaccination programme and the care that we are all taking to follow the guidance are continuing to save lives.

Please make sure that you come forward to receive both doses of the vaccine as soon as you are eligible. Don’t drop your guard – practise ‘hands, face, space, fresh air’ at all times.

A breakdown of Delta variant cases by lower-tier local authority is available.

Friday 11 June

Public Health England (PHE) releases weekly updates on the number of confirmed new cases of variants of concern and variants under investigation identified in the UK.

Rapid genotyping test speeds up availability of Delta data as cases continue to rise

Novel genotyping tests are being used to detect the Delta (VOC-21APR-02) variant, giving a result for action within 48 hours. As cases of the variant continue to rise, the tests are helping to rapidly inform public health action.

Data from these tests is available for the first time this week, as PHEfigures show that cases have risen by 29,892 to 42,323.

The data indicates that over 90% of new COVID-19 cases in the UK are now the Delta variant, which continues to show a significantly higher rate of growth compared to the Alpha variant.

Positive tests identified through genotyping are subsequently confirmed through whole genome sequencing and recent data have shown them to be extremely accurate in indicating a positive variant result. This allows earlier detection of trends and improved public health response. These results have been available to Health Protection Teams for several weeks and are already being used to develop local and national activities. Most recently, the tests allowed for the early identification of rising cases in areas including Greater Manchester and Lancashire, triggering a support package to control the variant in these areas.

New research from PHE suggests that the Delta variant is associated with an approximately 60% increased risk of household transmission compared to the Alpha variant. Growth rates for Delta cases are high across the regions, with regional estimates for doubling time ranging from 4.5 days to 11.5 days

With this variant now accounting for the overwhelming majority of new cases in the UK, it is encouraging to see that the increase in cases is not yet accompanied by a similarly large increase in hospitalisations. PHE will continue to monitor closely over the next few weeks, but the data currently suggest that the vaccination programme continues to mitigate the impact of this variant in populations who have high 2 dose vaccine coverage.

Dr Jenny Harries, Chief Executive of the UK Health Security Agency, said:

With numbers of Delta variant cases on the rise across the country, vaccination is our best defence. If you are eligible, we urge you to come forward and be vaccinated. Remember that 2 doses provide significantly more protection than a single dose.

However, while vaccination reduces the risk of severe disease, it does not eliminate it. With data showing that Delta is significantly more transmissible than Alpha, it is just as important as ever to follow public health advice, which has not changed. Get vaccinated, work from home where you can and remember ‘hands, face, space, fresh air’ at all times. These measures work, and they save lives.

Thursday 3 June

Public Health England (PHE) releases weekly updates on the number of confirmed new cases of variants of concern and variants under investigation identified in the UK.

Delta (VOC-21APR-02) variant now dominant in the UK

PHE’s weekly coronavirus (COVID-19) variant cases data shows that cases of the Delta (VOC-21APR-02) variant in the UK have risen by 5,472 since last week to 12,431.

Although there is some regional variation, PHE experts now believe that Delta (VOC-21APR-02) has overtaken Alpha (VOC-20DEC-01) as the dominant SARS-CoV-2 variant in the UK.

Early evidence suggests there may be an increased risk of hospitalisation for Delta (VOC-21APR-02) compared to Alpha (VOC-20DEC-02) although more data is needed for us to have more confidence in that finding. This week, 278 people with the Delta (VOC-21APR-02) variant attended A&E, resulting in 94 people being admitted to hospital overnight. Last week, 201 people attended A&E, with 43 admissions. Once again, the majority of these had not been vaccinated.

The most affected areas remain Bolton, where cases have risen by 795 to 2149, and Blackburn with Darwen which has seen 368 new cases, bringing it to 724 in total. There are encouraging signs that the transmission rate in Bolton has begun to fall and that the actions taken by residents and local authority teams have been successful in reducing spread.

Dr Jenny Harries, Chief Executive, UK Health Security Agency, said:

With this variant now dominant across the UK, it remains vital that we all continue to exercise as much caution as possible. The way to tackle variants is to tackle the transmission of COVID-19 as a whole. Work from home where you can, and practise ‘hands, face, space, fresh air’ at all times.

If you are eligible and have not already done so, please come forward to be vaccinated and make sure you get your second jab. It will save lives.

In Bolton, local teams have gone door to door in targeted areas on consecutive weekends to distribute test kits, share vital safety messages and encourage people to get the vaccine at a local drop-in centre. Take up of both testing and the vaccine has been positive.

Blackburn with Darwen has also seen local teams making door-to-door visits, and over 10,000 additional PCR tests have been given out. Mobile testing units have been deployed to the area and wastewater sampling continues, in order to track the spread of the variant.

PHE has also published a breakdown of outbreaks and clusters of variants in schools and other settings.

Outbreaks and clusters in primary and secondary schools are at low levels but we have seen a slight increase over recent weeks, in line with higher levels of the Delta (VOC-21APR-02) variant circulating in the community.

The latest PHE data suggest that there have been 97 confirmed COVID-19 outbreaks in primary and secondary schools that have had at least one variant case linked to them over the most recent 4-week period. This represents around 1 in 250 schools.

PHE’s health protection teams continue to work with local authorities and schools to carry out surveillance of COVID-19 cases in schools to understand and reduce transmission in these settings.

PHE experts continue to urge everybody to remain cautious as the country approaches the next stage of the roadmap. Variant cases are on the increase in several areas and it is absolutely crucial that everyone plays their part in preventing their spread.

Thursday 27 May

Public Health England (PHE) releases weekly updates on the number of confirmed new cases of variants of concern and variants under investigation identified in the UK.

The dominant variant continues to be VOC-20DEC-01 (B.1.1.7) and PHEwill continue to monitor all variants closely. The best way to stop the spread of the virus is to remember: hands, face, space and follow the restrictions in place.

Public health leaders urge caution in areas of high variant prevalence

PHE’s latest weekly variant cases data shows that cases of VOC-21APR-02 have risen by 3,535 to 6,959 since last week.

The most affected areas continue to be Bolton, Bedford and Blackburn with Darwen, which have seen 1,354, 366 and 361 confirmed cases, respectively. There are small numbers of cases of VOC-21APR-02 in most parts of the country. PHE have published a full breakdown of VOC-21APR-02 cases by lower-tier local authority.

In some affected areas, hospitalisations are rising. Hospital attendances and admissions are predominantly in unvaccinated individuals, highlighting how crucial it is that people in these areas come forward to receive vaccination. Nationwide, up to 25 May, 201 people who were confirmed to have VOC-21APR-02 attended A&E, resulting in 43 admissions. These numbers will be updated with new sequencing results on a weekly basis.

Evidence shows that VOC-21APR-02 is likely to be more transmissible than the dominant B.1.1.7 ‘Kent’ variant. Cases of VOC-21APR-02 have continued to grow faster than B.1.1.7 but an increase in overall cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) infections has only been seen in a small number of areas. PHE experts are monitoring the situation closely to establish how much more transmissible VOC-21APR-02 may be. It is crucial that everybody, particularly in the most affected areas, take particular care to remain responsible and vigilant.

PHE study showed that 2 doses of vaccine offers high levels of protection against symptomatic disease from VOC-21APR-02. We expect the vaccines to be effective at preventing hospitalisation and death, so it is vital to get both doses to gain maximum protection against all existing and emerging variants.

Dr Jenny Harries, Chief Executive, UK Health Security Agency, said:

With cases of the variant first identified in India continuing to rise in some areas, we are urging people to be very cautious and follow the guidance on hygiene, face coverings, social distancing and meeting outdoors. We now know that getting both vaccine doses gives a high degree of protection against this variant and we urge everyone to have the vaccine when the NHS invites you.

Please follow the public health advice and make sure that you remain careful, work from home if you can, meet people outside where possible and remember ‘hands, face, space, fresh air’ at all times. This is the best way to protect yourself and your loved ones from this variant.

In London, PHE is working across the health system and with borough council leaders in parts of the city where cases have been identified. A targeted approach is being used throughout the city, including Hounslow and other parts of west London, where dispersed clusters have been detected. This includes whole genome sequencing, PCR testing, settings-based testing, enhanced contact tracing, self-isolation support, and enhanced vaccine deployment to ensure that second doses for priority groups are brought forward and that maximum uptake is achieved for first doses.

In Bolton, the army working with RE:SILIENT visited over 4,000 houses, delivering over 1,500 test kits. This was in addition to the national surge team efforts, which saw over 9,000 properties visited and over 3,000 kits given out

In Blackburn with Darwen, enhanced vaccine uptake support has resulted in over 82% of registered patients in cohorts 1 to 10 receiving their first dose.

NHS Test and Trace have supplied more than 400,000 additional PCRtest kits to the most affected areas to make sure that everyone who needs a test can get one.

In addition, over 190 existing test sites have been reassigned to provide PCR test kits in areas where VOC-21APR-02 prevalence is high. This means tests can be sequenced faster, so VOC-21APR-02 cases are found sooner.

Over 300 Mobile Testing Units (MTUs) have been deployed to provide PCR test kits for those without symptoms in high-prevalence areas, including to more than 35 schools so students, parents and staff can get a PCR test as quickly as possible.

National marketing support is in place to make sure that local communities are kept well informed about the situation in their area, how and where to get a test, and about any public health interventions, such as surge testing.

New Variant Under Investigation

A further variant, VUI-21MAY-02 (C.36.3), has been designated as a Variant Under Investigation (VUI) on 24 May on the basis of the mutation profile and increased importation from a widening international area.

There have been 109 cases of VUI-21MAY-02 dispersed across the country to date. The C.36.3 variant was first detected in Thailand, in cases who had travelled from Egypt.

There is currently no evidence that this variant causes more severe disease or renders the vaccines currently deployed any less effective. PHE is carrying out laboratory testing to better understand the impact of the mutations on the behaviour of the virus.

All appropriate public health interventions will be undertaken, including additional contact tracing and targeted testing. Where cases have been identified, additional follow-up of cases, testing of contacts and if required targeted case finding will limit its spread.

More information will be available in Variant Technical Briefing 13, which Public Health England will publish on Thursday 27 May.

Thursday 20 May

Further rise in VOC-21APR-02 detected and new VUIdesignated

Public Health England’s (PHE) latest weekly variant cases data shows that cases of VOC-21APR-02 have risen by 2,111 to 3,424 since last week.

Cases are still predominantly affecting the North West of England – particularly Bolton – and London, but we are seeing clusters of cases across the country.

There is evidence that VOC-21APR-02 is growing rapidly and may be more transmissible than VOC-20DEC-01, the ‘Kent variant’ that is currently dominant in the UK. Experts at PHE are monitoring the situation closely.

In London, PHE is working in close partnership across the health system and with borough council leaders in parts of the city where cases have been identified. A targeted approach is being used throughout the city to target London’s many small dispersed clusters. This includes whole genome sequencing, polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing, settings-based testing, enhanced contact tracing, self-isolation support, and enhanced vaccine deployment to ensure that second doses for priority groups are brought forward and that maximum uptake is achieved for first doses.

In Bolton, more than 33,000 test kits have been given out as part of the surge testing programme, not including tests taken by residents visiting Mobile Testing Units (MTU). Health officials visited more than 9,000 properties during door-to-door visits over the weekend, giving out over 3,400 test kits.

In Blackburn with Darwen and Sefton, targeted local testing is underway in response to the rise in VOC-21APR-02, including mobile and drive-through test centres being set up and pop-up tests sites in specific communities. New vaccination centres have opened to boost the delivery of vaccines and additional supply of first doses has been secured.

In total, more than 180,000 additional PCR test kits have been deployed to affected areas to make sure everyone who needs a test can get one, and over 170 existing test sites in those areas have been switched to provide PCR test kits – this means tests can be sequenced faster so variant cases are found sooner.

Over 150 MTUs have been deployed to provide PCR test kits for those without symptoms in the most affected areas.

NHS Test and Trace has activated marketing to let some local communities know if surge testing is happening in their area and to explain how, when and where to get their tests, and enhanced contact tracing is in place for all positive cases and their contacts in areas affected by VOC-21APR-02 to help identify and break any potential chains of transmission. All confirmed cases have been told to self-isolate and their contacts are being identified.

So far, more than 20,000 positive samples from the most affected areas have been analysed using the new genotype assay method. In parallel, the majority of positive samples undergo genome sequencing for definitive confirmation of the variant cases.

Wastewater monitoring has been increased in affected areas to help identify early warning signals of where variants may be present. Wastewater monitoring can detect the presence of variants in areas where it has not yet been detected through clinical testing. This allows us to notify local decision makers at an early stage so they can take early action to contain the spread of the virus. Where an outbreak has already been detected, wastewater monitoring can provide additional insights into its geographical spread.

Dr Meera Chand, COVID-19 Incident Director at PHE, said:

We are very grateful to those who have turned out in their thousands in Bolton to be vaccinated. As per advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccines and Immunisation (JCVI), we particularly urge anyone who is yet to have their second dose to make sure they come forward and take up the offer as soon as it is due.

This is vitally important in the light of our current assessment that VOC-21APR-02 has grown rapidly in England and may be highly transmissible. PHE will continue to monitor all variants closely, paying particular attention to the impact on hospitalisations and deaths which will help us to understand the protective effects of the vaccine.

The best way to halt the spread of any variant is to test regularly using lateral flow tests or using PCR if you have symptoms, and to isolate if you or someone in your household tests positive or if you have returned from an amber or red list country. You should continue to work from home where possible and remember that the virus is harder to spread outside.

There is currently no evidence to suggest the vaccines will be less effective in protecting people against severe illness and hospitalisation from VOC-21APR-02. It is highly likely that the vaccines offer significant protection against severe disease, hospitalisation and death, which is why it’s vital to get both vaccine doses as soon as you are offered them. Further work is being rapidly carried out to understand more about the protection the vaccines offer, including impact on transmission.

Everyone in the country, and especially those in areas where a Variant of Concern is present in high rates, should take up the offer of twice-weekly testing.

Although some restrictions have eased, PHE continues to urge caution. Follow the public health advice, get your vaccine when offered it, and practise ‘hands, face, space, fresh air’.

Dr Jenny Harries, Chief Executive, UK Health Security Agency, said:

As cases of VOC-21APR-02 continue to rise, it is absolutely vital that people living in areas where prevalence is high come forward to get the vaccine. It is the best defence we have against the spread of this disease.

As we start to get back to normal life, it is very important that we do not become complacent. All of us need to remain responsible and vigilant. Get tested regularly, get the vaccine when offered it, and practise ‘hands, face, space, fresh air’. It will save lives.

New Variant Under Investigation

A further variant, VUI-21MAY-01, has been designated as a Variant Under Investigation (VUI) by PHE.

The variant is from a lineage which was designated a signal in monitoring on 6 May 2021 based on an unusual mutation profile. PHE has been monitoring the variant since April.

There have been 49 cases of VUI-21MAY-01 across the country to date, mainly concentrated in Yorkshire and the Humber.

There is currently no evidence that this variant causes more severe disease or renders the vaccines currently deployed any less effective. PHE is carrying out increased laboratory testing to better understand the impact of the mutations on the behaviour of the virus.

All appropriate public health interventions are being undertaken, including additional contact tracing and targeted testing. Where cases have been identified, additional follow-up of cases, testing of contacts and targeted case finding will limit the spread of variants.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19 you should seek a PCR test as soon as possible. If you are tested positive then you and your household must stay at home and not leave the house for any reason for 10 days.

More information will be available in Variant Technical Briefing 12, which Public Health England will publish on Friday 21 May.

Thursday 13 May

Public Health England (PHE) releases weekly updates on the number of confirmed new cases of variants of concern and variants under investigation identified in the UK.

The dominant variant continues to be VOC-20DEC-01 (B.1.1.7) and PHEwill continue to monitor all variants closely. The best way to stop the spread of the virus is to remember: hands, face, space and follow the restrictions in place.

Further rise in VOC-21APR-02 cases detected

The latest PHE data show cases of the Variant of Concern, VOC-21APR-02, first detected in India, have risen from 520 to 1,313 cases this week in the UK. The variant was confirmed as a Variant of Concern on 7 May after a rise in cases and evidence of spread in some areas. PHE is actively monitoring the impact of this variant and its severity and is taking all appropriate public health actions to limit the spread.

Cases and clusters are being rapidly investigated to identify close contacts of those who test positive, encourage testing uptake and to ensure that people self-isolate when required. These measures, implemented by PHE health protection teams, NHS Test and Trace and local authorities, are the most effective way of breaking the chains of transmission. Additional control measures, including targeted case finding, will be implemented where there is evidence of increased spread and investigations are underway in specific settings to investigate clusters and outbreaks.

More than 60,000 additional PCR test kits have been distributed so far as part of ongoing surge testing activity for VOC-APR21-02, with cases and close contacts traced and asked to isolate. To find any new cases of the variant, over 150 existing test sites and 10 schools have distributed test kits, with 133 Mobile Testing Units deployed to provide PCR testing for people without symptoms.

Across the North West, significant work is underway with local councils and partners in specific areas where variant cases have been identified. In Bolton mobile testing units have been deployed and door to door PCRtesting has been offered to 22,000 residents. A vaccine bus has been established in the heart of the community to increase vaccine uptake as part of a wider drive.

In London, PHE is working in close partnership across the health system and with borough councils in parts of the city where cases have been identified. PCR testing, whole genome sequencing and enhanced contact tracing are being used throughout the city to target the many small dispersed clusters. Taking this community-led approach has already proved effective in reducing transmission of variants in London to date.

Dr Susan Hopkins, COVID-19 Strategic Response Director at PHE, said:

Cases of this variant are rising in the community and we are continuously monitoring its spread and severity to ensure we take rapid public health action. We need to act collectively and responsibly to ensure that variants do not impact on the progress we have all made to drive down levels of Covid-19 and the increased freedom that brings. That means you should pay attention to and act on the local health advice in your area. Testing and isolating when required not only limits spread, it helps us to better understand how the variant behaves in the community which is vital to taking effective and proportionate action moving forward.

If you’re asked to take a test please do. The way to limit the spread of all variants is the same. Keep your distance, wash your hands regularly and thoroughly, cover your nose and mouth when inside, keep buildings well ventilated and meet people from other households outside.

PHE is asking the public to continue to:

  • work from home where you can
  • follow the current guidance on mixing with others
  • take up the universal, free offer of twice weekly LFDs tests
  • if positive, order a confirmatory PCR test kit and stay at home
  • get vaccinated when you are called to do so

The other variants first detected in India, VUI-21APR-01 and VUI-21APR-03 have not been re-designated as VOCs, but this will be kept under constant review.

Following close monitoring, one Variant under Investigation VUI-21MAR-01, which includes the spike mutations E484K and N501Y, is now considered provisionally extinct in the UK. Designated a Variant under Investigation on 4 March, the contacts of confirmed cases were traced and followed public health advice to isolate. PHE defines a variant as provisionally extinct after 12 weeks without detection although we continue to monitor to see if they reappear.

Thursday 7 May

Public Health England (PHE) releases weekly updates on the number of confirmed new cases of variants of concern and variants under investigation identified in the UK.

The dominant variant continues to be VOC-20DEC-01 (B.1.1.7) and PHEwill continue to monitor all variants closely. The best way to stop the spread of the virus is to remember: hands, face, space and follow the restrictions in place.

VUI-21APR-02 reclassified as a Variant of Concern (VOC)

Following a rise in cases in the UK and evidence of community transmission, PHE has reclassified VUI-21APR-02 (B.1.617.2, classified as a Variant Under Investigation (VUI) on 28 April) as a Variant of Concern (VOC), now known as VOC-21APR-02.

This is based on evidence which suggests this variant, first detected in India, is at least as transmissible as B.1.1.7 (the Kent variant). The other characteristics of this variant are still being investigated.

There is currently insufficient evidence to indicate that any of the variants recently detected in India cause more severe disease or render the vaccines currently deployed any less effective. PHE is carrying out laboratory testing, in collaboration with academic and international partners to better understand the impact of the mutations on the behaviour of the virus.

Cases of VOC-21APR-02 have increased to 520 from 202 over the last week and almost half the cases are related to travel or contact with a traveller. The cases are spread across the country, however, the majority of the cases are in 2 areas – the North West (predominantly Bolton) and London – and this is where we are seeing the greatest transmission.

PHE health protection teams are working with local authorities, Directors of Public Health (DsPH) and NHS Test and Trace to detect cases and limit onward spread.

Surge and community testing is an effective way of finding and isolating new cases of variants and will be deployed where there is evidence of community transmission. This is in addition to the comprehensive work that is already underway to trace and test all contacts of cases.

Everyone in the affected areas will be asked to get a test, even if they don’t have symptoms. If someone tests positive, they must isolate to stop the spread.

In partnership with local DsPH, additional measures are being implemented across the country where there are clusters, to contain the spread. These include:

  • enhanced contact tracing for those testing positive with a VOC to define locations they may have acquired or transmitted infection to focus further testing
  • enhanced community and surge testing in areas defined by the local authorities and regional teams
  • working closely with communities and community leaders to ensure that individuals have the right support to test and isolate
  • increased community engagement, including ensuring that messages are accessible in languages that are used by communities and provided by trusted community representatives

Where clusters of other VOCs are detected, PHE will continue to take all appropriate public heath action to break the chains of transmission.

Understanding how this virus behaves in the community is key to assessing its transmissibility, severity and whether it responds to the vaccines currently in use, all of which help to determine the risk to the public from this variant. While overall rates of COVID-19 remain low, there are actions that everyone can take to reduce spread.

PHE is encouraging the public to continue to:

  • work from home where you can
  • follow the current guidance on mixing with others
  • take up the universal, free offer of twice weekly LFDs tests
  • if positive, order a confirmatory PCR test kit and stay at home
  • get vaccinated when you are called to do so

Dr Susan Hopkins, COVID-19 Strategic Response Director at PHE, said:

The way to limit the spread of all variants is the same and although we are all enjoying slightly more freedom, the virus is still with us. Keep your distance, wash your hands regularly and thoroughly, cover your nose and mouth when inside and keep buildings well ventilated and meet people from other households outside. If you are told to get a test, if you have any symptoms at all or have been in contact with someone who has tested positive, please make sure you get tested too.

We are monitoring all of these variants extremely closely and have taken the decision to classify this as a Variant of Concern because the indications are that this VOC-21APR-02 is a more transmissible variant.

The current evidence suggests that the other variants detected in India, VUI-21APR-01 and VUI-21APR-03 are not VOCs, but this will be kept under constant review and investigations are ongoing into the reasons behind the different behaviours of these variants.

Previous

Thursday 29 April

Public Health England (PHE) releases weekly updates on the number of confirmed new cases of variants of concern and variants under investigation identified in the UK.

The dominant variant continues to be VOC-20DEC-01 (B.1.1.7) and PHEwill continue to monitor all variants closely. The best way to stop the spread of the virus is to remember: hands, face, space and follow the restrictions in place.

Two VUIs added to B.1.617 group

Two variants have been designated Variants Under Investigation by PHE.

The 2 variants, VUI-21APR-02 and VUI-21APR-03, share the same parent lineage (B.1.617) as VUI-21APR-01, first identified in India. PHE has been monitoring these variants since early April.

VUI-21APR-01 was designated a Variant Under Investigation in April. The variant is from the B.1.617 lineage – a distinct fingerprint of genetic mutations. We have also identified cases of 2 additional variants, which are part of the same lineage and so are genetically similar.

While closely related, their genetic profiles are different and have been designated as separate Variants Under Investigation so that we can track them properly and take fast public health action as needed.

VUI-21APR-02 does not have the mutation E484Q while VUI-21APR-03 shares the L452R and E484Q mutations found in VUI-21-APR-01.

There is currently no evidence that these variants cause more severe disease or render the vaccines currently deployed any less effective. PHEis carrying out increased laboratory testing, in collaboration with international partners to better understand the impact of the mutations on the behaviour of the virus and to ensure all appropriate public health interventions are taken.

Identified case numbers remain low and are geographically dispersed in England. Where cases have been identified, additional follow up of cases, testing of contacts and targeted case finding will be used to limit the spread of these variants.

PHE has identified:

  • 172 cases of VUI-21APR-01
  • 202 cases of VUI-21APR-02
  • 5 cases of VUI-21APR-03

All appropriate public health interventions will be undertaken, including additional contact tracing and targeted testing.

Thursday 15 April

New Variant Under Investigation (VUI) designated

A new variant has been designated a Variant Under Investigation (VUI) by PHE.

The variant, first detected in India, includes a number of mutations including E484Q, L452R, and P681R.

PHE has identified 77 cases of this variant in the UK and all appropriate public health interventions will be undertaken, including enhanced contact tracing.

This variant has been designated VUI-21APR-01. PHE and international partners continue to monitor the situation closely.

Tuesday 16 March

Two additional cases of Variant of Concern VOC-21JAN-02 (P.1) found in England

Two more cases of the Variant of Concern VOC-21JAN-02 (P.1) have been identified in England – one in the West Midlands and one in Haringey, London.

Both cases are linked with international travel to Brazil. The case in the West Midlands was identified following their arrival at Birmingham Airport, where they were tested and quarantined as part of the managed hotel quarantine process.

The London case was picked up through surge testing. Surge testing will be stepped up in the affected area, and contact tracing teams have undertaken a comprehensive investigation to identify any further contacts.

The latest cases bring the total number of P.1 variant cases in the UK to 12 – 9 in England and 3 in Scotland, all of which have links to travel or to a previously confirmed case that has travelled to Brazil.

New Variant Under Investigation (VUI) designated

A new variant has been designated a Variant Under Investigation (VUI) by Public Health England (PHE).

On 9 March, PHE noted a report of 33 cases of a new variant reported by the Philippines. The variant includes a number of notable mutations including E484K and N501Y, which are found in several other variants of concern.

PHE has identified 2 cases of this variant in England. One of the cases is linked with international travel and the other is currently under investigation. All appropriate public health interventions are being undertaken.

This variant has been designated VUI-21MAR-02 (P.3). PHE and international partners continue to monitor the situation closely.

Saturday 13 March

Four more cases of Variant of Concern VOC-202101/02 (P.1) found in England

Four more cases of the Variant of Concern VOC-202101/02, also known as P.1, have been identified in England – 3 in South Gloucestershire and one in Bradford, West Yorkshire.

The cases in South Gloucestershire are all close or household contacts of the 2 existing P.1 cases in the area. They were offered testing in response to the initial cases.

Specialist contact tracing teams have undertaken a comprehensive investigation to identify any further contacts and additional testing has been in place since the initial cases were identified.

The individual in Bradford tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) in late February after travelling back from Brazil via Paris on 14 February 2021. Subsequent genomic sequencing confirmed the case as the P.1 variant. Contact tracing teams have followed up close contacts of the individual and advised them to isolate and get a test.

The latest cases bring the total number of P.1 variant cases in the UK to 10 – 7 in England and 3 in Scotland, all of which have links to travel or to a previously confirmed case that has travelled to Brazil.

New Variant Under Investigation (VUI) designated in UK

A new variant identified in the UK has been designated a Variant Under Investigation (VUI) by PHE.

VUI-202103/01 (lineage B.1.324.1) was designated a VUI on 4 March after 2 cases were found in the South East of England in individuals who had recently travelled to Antigua. Despite the travel history of these cases there is no scientific evidence to determine where this variant first emerged.

The variant contains the spike mutations E484K and N501Y, both usually associated with variants of concern (VOC), however it does not feature specific deletions that would lead to a designation as a VOC.

Contact tracing teams have completed thorough investigations to identify and follow up any close contacts and no additional cases have been found to date.

Friday 5 March

Contact tracers successfully identify sixth case of P.1 Variant of Concern

PHE and NHS Test and Trace teams have successfully located the third individual in England who tested positive for the P.1 Variant of Concern that originated in Manaus, Brazil.

Tracing teams narrowed their search to a small number of households in Croydon, South London, when an individual from the borough made themselves known by responding to calls made by specialist contact tracers.

NHS Test and Trace were then able to match the barcode from the individual’s testing pack to the variant test result.

PHE is now carrying out enhanced contact tracing with the individual and other members of their household. The case had been in contact with an individual who travelled from Brazil in early February.

Although investigations are ongoing, current early indications are that all members of the household isolated for the correct amount of time after the traveller returned and after the case developed symptoms.

Doctor Fu-Meng Khaw, Strategic Response Director for PHE and Deputy Chief Medical Adviser for Test and Trace, said:

The identification of this individual is the result of an enormous collaborative effort between specialist teams at NHS Test and Trace and Public Health England.

Staff have been working around the clock to pursue every line of investigation and this is a fantastic result that enables us to fully investigate the circumstances around the case and reduce the risk of onward transmission.

As an additional precaution, we’re working closely with Croydon Council to put in place further testing in the area.

We are continuing to monitor all variants closely and the best way to protect against all COVID-19 infections is to remember the basics of Hands, Face, Space.

Thursday 4 March

New Variant Under Investigation designated in the UK

Sixteen cases of a new variant, VUI-202102/04 (lineage B.1.1.318), have been identified in the UK. The variant has been designated a Variant Under Investigation (VUI) by Public Health England (PHE).

Cases of this variant, understood to have originated in the UK, were first identified on 15 February through genomic horizon scanning. All individuals who tested positive and their contacts have been traced and advised to isolate.

Following assessments, the variant was designated a VUI on 24 February. It contains the E484K mutation, which is also found in 2 existing VUIspresent in the UK, but does not feature the N501Y mutation, present in all variants of concern (VOCs).

The addition of this variant as a VUI means there are now a total of 4 VUIsand 4 VOCs currently being tracked in the UK.

Cases with no travel links

As of 3 March:

  • a total of 59 cases of the variant VOC-202012/02, first detected in South Africa, have been found in England where no travel links could be established
  • a total of 26 cases of the variant VUI-202101/01, the P2 variant first detected in Brazil, have been found in England where no travel links could be established

Previous

Tuesday 28 February

Cases of Variant of Concern first detected in Manaus identified in the UK

Up to 6 cases of the Variant of Concern first identified in Manaus, Brazil (P.1) have been detected in the UK. Public Health England (PHE) has identified 3 of these cases of the Variant of Concern in England.

Two of the cases in England are from one household in South Gloucestershire with a history of travel to Brazil and there is a third, currently unlinked case.

The cases in South Gloucestershire were rapidly followed up by the PHEHealth Protection Team – cases and their contacts have been identified and retested. One case that had travelled to Brazil has been isolating at home with their household since returning to the UK.

PHE and NHS Test and Trace are following up with all passengers on Swiss Air flight LX318 travelling from Sao Paulo via Zurich and landing in London Heathrow on 10 February, to provide public health advice and test them and their households. Anyone who returned to the UK at that time should have gone home immediately from the airport and isolated for 10 days.

If you were a passenger on the flight and have not been contacted, please call 01174 503 174 to arrange a test for you and your household contacts.

Although the risk to the wider community is considered low, as a precaution, PHE, working in collaboration with South Gloucestershire Council and NHS Test and Trace, is taking swift and decisive action to deploy surge asymptomatic testing as well as increasing sequencing of positive samples from the area. Residents of South Gloucestershire should visit the council’s website for more information on testing. The most important actions are identifying cases and their contacts and supporting these individuals to isolate effectively.

Further investigation is underway regarding the third case in England. The individual did not complete their test registration card so follow-up details are not available. We are therefore asking for anyone who undertook a test on 12 or 13 February and hasn’t received their result or has an uncompleted test registration card, to call 119 in England or 0300 303 2713 in Scotland for assistance as soon as possible.

The P.1 variant has been designated ‘of concern’ as it shares some important mutations with the variant first identified in South Africa (B.1.351), such as E484K and N501Y.  It is possible that this variant may respond less well to current vaccines, but more work is needed to understand this.

Dr Susan Hopkins, PHE strategic response director for COVID-19 and NHS Test and Trace Medical Advisor, said:

We have identified these cases thanks to the UK’s advanced sequencing capabilities which means we are finding more variants and mutations than many other countries and are therefore able to take action quickly.

The important thing to remember is that COVID-19, no matter what variant it is, spreads in the same way. That means the measures to stop it spreading do not change. Stay at home and if you do need to go out for essential reasons, cover your nose and mouth, wash your hands thoroughly and keep your distance.

We ask that individuals come forward for testing through the symptomatic and asymptomatic test sites across the countries in order to continue to drive down cases in the community.

Background

Three cases of the variant have also been identified in Scotland but these are not linked to these 3 cases in England.

Tuesday 16 February

Public Health England (PHE) has identified 38 cases of COVID-19 which genomic sequencing has shown to feature a specific set of mutations which are currently being referred to as lineage B.1.525. The set of mutations includes the E484K spike protein mutation, which is present on a number of other variants of concern and variants under investigation.

This variant has been designated a Variant Under Investigation (VUI) and will be referred to as VUI202102/03.

The variant has been detected in other countries, including Nigeria, Denmark and Canada.

Cases are geographically dispersed across England. Enhanced contact tracing and genomic sequencing is underway to monitor the situation as it develops.

Professor Yvonne Doyle, Medical Director at PHE, said:

PHE is monitoring data about emerging variants very closely and where necessary public health interventions are being undertaken, such as extra testing and enhanced contact tracing.

There is currently no evidence that this set of mutations causes more severe illness or increased transmissibility.

The best way to stop the spread of the virus is to follow the public health advice: wash your hands, wear a face covering and keep your distance from others. While in lockdown, it is important that people stay at home, where possible.

Regular updates of confirmed variant cases will be provided on this page.

Friday 15 January

As of Thursday 14 January 2021, 35 genomically confirmed and 12 genomically probable cases of the SARS-CoV-2 variant which originated in South Africa (called VOC202012/02 in the UK, also named B1.351 and 501Y.V2 internationally) have been identified in the UK.

Two variants of interest have also been identified in Brazil. The first variant is variant under investigation (VUI) 202101/01 – this variant has a small number of mutations. The spread and significance of this variant remains under investigation. In partnership with COG-UK, 8 genomically confirmed cases of this variant have now been identified in the UK. All necessary public health action is being taken to follow-up the cases.

The second variant has been designated a Variant of Concern by NERVTAG, now termed VOC202101/02, and this variant has more mutations. We have NOT detected this second Brazil originated strain in the UK– this has been detected in Manaus and travellers arriving in Japan.

Laboratory work has begun on the VOC 202012/02 in the UK and is routinely undertaken on all variants under investigation or of concern once samples are available.

Dr Susan Hopkins, COVID Strategic Response Director at Public Health England, said:

We are continuing efforts to understand the effect of the variants on transmissibility, severe disease, mortality, antibody response and vaccine efficacy.

For now, our advice remains the same following detection of a Brazilian variant in the UK, even though this is not the variant detected in Manaus with more mutations: the best way to stop the spread of the virus is to wash your hands, wear a face covering and keep your distance from others. Whilst in lockdown, it is important that we also stay at home unless it is absolutely essential to go out.

Through COG-UK, the UK is a global leader in SARS-CoV-2 genomics, providing around 48% of the genomic data supplied to GISAID, the scientific initiative which allows global, real-time surveillance of the COVID-19 pandemic.

WGS is vital to the global response to the pandemic, allowing us to monitor and understand the evolution of new COVID-19 variants and respond with timely public health interventions.

In addition to the travel ban imposed on South Africa on 23 December 2020, the Department for Transport (DfT) has announced new restrictions for everyone arriving into the country from Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Eswatini, Zambia, Malawi, Lesotho, Mozambique, Angola, Mauritius and Seychelles.

The restrictions follow new data on the steep rise in incidence of the B1.351 variant, which has vastly increased the risk of community transmission between these 9 southern African countries, as well as the Seychelles and Mauritius which have strong travel links with South Africa.

From 15 January 2021, the DfT has also imposed a subsequent travel ban to the UK from several South American countries and countries with strong travel links to Brazil. Passengers who have been in or transited through Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Chile, Cape Verde, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guyana, Paraguay, Panama, Portugal (including Madeira and the Azores), Peru, Suriname, Uruguay and Venezuela in the last 10 days will no longer be granted access to the UK.

British and Irish Nationals (and or third country nationals with residence rights in the UK) who have travelled from or transited through these countries must self-isolate for 10 days, as must members of their household. Contact tracing and testing of close contacts of confirmed cases will be used to identify and manage potential transmission. The decision to impose these restrictions has been taken to prevent the spread of the variant of coronavirus, known as VOC202101/02, into the UK.

The Isolation Assurance Service (IAS) will be contacting all returnees from all southern African countries, Mauritius and Seychelles to reinforce the advice to self-isolate, to encourage testing even if asymptomatic and to inform anyone treating/testing them of their recent travel.

Wednesday 23 December

The 2 cases were identified in the UK on 22 December 2020 and both have been in contact with someone who has travelled from South Africa. PHE’s Health Protection Teams have followed up with both cases and contact tracing is underway.

The new variant named B1.351 (also referred to as 501Y.V2) was first detected in Nelson Mandela Bay, South Africa, in samples at the beginning of October. Molecular dating suggests that it could have been in circulation from the end of August.

The rapid spread of the variant in South Africa could be an indication of increased transmissibility but this is not yet confirmed. PHE is investigating this variant and will share its findings in due course. There is currently no evidence to suggest that the variant has any impact on disease severity, antibody response or vaccine efficacy. Epidemiological and virological investigations are also ongoing in South Africa.

It is not uncommon for viruses to undergo mutations; seasonal influenza mutates every year. More than 4,000 variants of SARS-CoV-2 have been identified in the UK and variants have been observed in many other countries.

Dr Susan Hopkins, Chief Medical Adviser on COVID-19 to PHE & Test and Trace, said:

We are investigating this new variant of SARS-CoV-2 which originated in South Africa. Viruses often evolve and this is not unusual. We are carrying out work as a priority to understand the potential risk this variant may cause. It is important to say that there is currently no evidence that this variant causes more severe illness, or that the regulated vaccine would not protect against it.

The best way to stop infection is to stick to the rules – wash our hands, wear a face covering and keep our distance from others.

The recommended control measures to limit the spread of the new variant continue to be testing, following the existing public health guidance and abiding by the restrictions, including ‘Hands, Face, Space’ and limiting your number of contacts. DfT have announced new restrictions for everyone arriving in the country from South Africa.

#AceHealthDesk report ……Published: July.04: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here:  https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

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(LONDON) PHE Analysis Report: #COVID19 Vaccines have prevented 7.2-million infections & at least 27,000-deaths #AceHealthDesk report

#AceHealthReport – July.03: This is the first analysis giving an estimated number of vaccine-prevented infections, providing further evidence of the staggering impact of the vaccination programme so far.

#CoronavirusNewsDesk reports that a new analysis suggests the vaccination programme has prevented between 6.4 and 7.9 million infections and 26,000 and 28,000 deaths in England alone in the latest modelling analysis from Public Health England (PHE) and the University of Cambridge’s MRC Biostatistics Unit suggests that the coronavirus #COVID19 vaccination programme has so far prevented an estimated 7.2 million infections and 27,000 deaths in England alone.

PHE Head of Immunisation Dr Mary Ramsay said:

These findings remind us once again why getting both doses of your vaccine is the most important thing you can do to stop the spread of this terrible disease.

As well as preventing the deaths of tens of thousands from COVID-19, for the first time we can now appreciate the huge impact that the vaccines have had on stopping people getting infected, and therefore passing the virus on to others.

The results were produced using the PHE and Cambridge real-time pandemic surveillance model, looking at the direct and indirect impact of the COVID-19 vaccination programme on infections and mortality.

The total was calculated by comparing the estimated impact of vaccination on infection and mortality against a worst-case scenario where no vaccines were in place to reduce infections and mortality.

Dr Paul Birrell, Senior Research Associate at the MRC Biostatistics Unit, University of Cambridge and Senior Principal Modeller at PHE, said:

The number of infections and deaths saved by the vaccination programme is not only astoundingly high, but continues to grow exponentially as the vaccination programme continues.

In practice, this analysis highlights that the vaccination programme has given us a path back towards a normal life that wouldn’t otherwise have been possible. This is why it’s so important that we all get 2 doses of the vaccine as soon as we can.

#AceHealthDesk report ……Published: July.03: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts fromTwitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

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(SCOTLAND) #Coronavirus Report: Cases have risen to nearly 2,000 #COVID19 linked-to-people watching Euro 2020 football matches #AceNewsDesk report

#AceNewsReport – July.02: This included 397 fans who were inside Wembley for the match: A relatively small number of cases reported attending the Fanzone in Glasgow, or Scotland’s two home matches at Hampden.

#CoronavirusNewsDesk – Football linked to 2,000 Scottish #COVID19 cases Public Health Scotland (PHS) said two thirds of the 1,991 cases were people who travelled to London for Scotland’s game with England on 18 June: On Wednesday Scotland recorded 3,887 new cases, which was 9.8% of all tests carried out. In the past seven days 20,511 positive results have been returned:

Hospital admissions have risen and deaths related to #COVID19 are also up, but they are nowhere near the numbers seen during the first two waves of the pandemic: Health Secretary Humza Yousaf told BBC Scotland earlier this week that the data clearly showed the number of people testing positive was “skewed disproportionately towards young males”.And he said several public health experts had partly put the increase down to the large number of indoor gatherings to watch Euro 2020 matches and many gathered together in large groups in central London ahead of the game, with those in Leicester Square being moved on by police shortly after half-time as thousands of Scotland fans gather in central London

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon had previously denied claims that the Scottish government took a lenient approach to football fans while Scotland was playing in the tournament. She told a briefing on Tuesday: “We haven’t taken a softly, softly approach.”We were very explicit in saying to fans who didn’t have a ticket for Wembley not to travel.”We can’t physically stop every person travelling and significant numbers of people did travel.”

Scotland was only allocated 2,600 tickets for the match at Wembley because of Covid restrictions.

But tens of thousands of fans are believed to have travelled to London despite warnings not to do so unless they had a ticket.

The country’s national clinical director, Prof Jason Leitch said he was disappointed that 2,000 of the 32,000 cases recorded in Scotland since 11 July had been linked to Euro 2020 events.

But he said it was impossible to know whether people had contracted the virus while watching a match or somewhere else, or how many people they may have subsequently infected.

Prof Leitch added: “Some of them may have taken it to London with them, some of them may have got it when they came home.

“But the increasing number of males, the increasing number of young people and the increasing numbers with tagged Euro events, particularly indoor Euro events, and buses and travel would suggest that there is certainly a connection between some of that travel and the Euros”. 

He stressed that it was important “not to let everyone else off the hook” because “this is not a Euros virus”.

He added: “It is of course an important part of the last few weeks, but you can catch the virus even if you weren’t at the Euros and were not watching the football.”

Getty Images: Nearly 400 of the 2,600 Scotland fans inside Wembley later tested positive for the virus

Public Health Scotland said it had tagged positive Covid cases if they attended either a Euro 2020 organised event, such as a match at Hampden or Wembley Stadium or the Fanzone at Glasgow Green.

People who tested positive after attending an informal gathering, such as a pub or a house party to watch a match, were also tagged. 

The report said that 1,294 of the 1,991 total cases had reported travelling to London, including 397 who were actually at the match.

Only 55 of those who tested positive reported being at the Fanzone, while 38 had been at Scotland’s match with Croatia at Hampden, and 37 at the team’s opening fixture against the Czech Republic.

About 90% of the cases were male, with three quarters of the total – 1,470 cases – being aged between 20 and 39.

There has been a lot of talk about the mixing prompted by watching football being a cause of spread of the virus in Scotland.

It is an easy target given the images of people together in stadiums and fanzone sites.But the problem with this data is it does not provide the answer to that.It is contact tracing data used to establish who should be asked to isolate because they may be a close contact of an infected person.

It does not tell you where the individual caught the virus – just where they had been when they were infectious.So this tells us that 6% of positive cases during this period attended a match, Fanzone, someone’s home or the pub to watch a game of football.

The fact that people were out enjoying Scotland’s first tournament for 23 years is no surprise: It’s quite likely that led to some transmission – although remember it is indoor settings such as having a drink in the pub or sharing public transport on the way to the game that is more risky than watching a match outdoors – but it’s hardly an explanation for Scotland’s big rise in cases.

Scotland fan Michael MacLean told BBC Radio Scotland’s Drivetime programme that he tested positive for Covid following his trip to London for the match against England.

The 21-year-old travelled from Inverness on the train, visiting pubs and celebrating with other supporters in Leicester Square during his three-night stay in the city.A few days after returning to Scotland, he showed symptoms of coronavirus.He said: “Leicester Square, I would say, was the spreader. “It was an amazing experience, but I am quite gutted I got Covid because that has affected me, affected my work, it has affected my friends.”

#AceNewsDesk report ……….Published: July.02: 2021:

Editor says …Sterling Publishing & Media Service Agency is not responsible for the content of external site or from any reports, posts or links, and can also be found here on Telegram: https://t.me/acenewsdaily all of our posts from Twitter can be found here: https://acetwitternews.wordpress.com/ and all wordpress and live posts and links here: https://acenewsroom.wordpress.com/ and thanks for following as always appreciate every like, reblog or retweet and free help and guidance tips on your PC software or need help & guidance from our experts AcePCHelp.WordPress.Com

#phs, #scotland