Covid news live: Latest updates as PM expected to ease Plan B restrictions
Health Secretary Sajid Javid ‘cautiously optimistic’ UK restrictions will ease next week
Boris Johnson is set to announce a relaxation of England’s Covid-19 Plan B restrictions.
The Prime Minister will review the latest Covid-19 data with his ministers on Wednesday morning before delivering a statement to MPs this afternoon in the House of Commons.
Plan B restrictions, which were introduced before Christmas as part of the spread of the Omicron variant, include advice on working from home, Covid passes and the compulsory wearing of masks in shops and on public transport .
It comes as the World Health Organization (WHO) has warned that the Covid-19 pandemic is far from over, warning against taking the Omicron variant lightly.
WHO chief Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, speaking at a press conference from Geneva on Tuesday, said the Omicron variant had led to 18 million new infections worldwide in the past week. Although the variant may turn out to be less severe on average, “the narrative that it is a mild illness is misleading,” he said.
‘Nocebo effect’ may cause two-thirds of Covid vaccine symptoms, study finds
Nearly two-thirds of reported adverse effects of Covid-19 vaccination, such as headaches and fatigue, may be due to the “nocebo effect” – a negative version of the placebo effect – according to a new report. study.
While under the placebo effect, a person’s health improves after taking a treatment with no pharmacological therapeutic benefit, such as a sugar pill or a syringe full of saline solution, the nocebo effect occurs when individuals feel unpleasant side effects after similar treatment, scientists from Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) in the United States said.
Thomas KingleyJanuary 19, 2022 07:45
Doctors warn hospitals ‘not to cope’ as study links A&E expectations to deaths
Hospitals are unable to cope with the current pressures, experienced doctors have warned, as a new study links long A&E waits to an increased risk of death.
According to a study published in the Emergency Medicine Journal (EMJ), patients who wait more than five hours in an emergency department are at increased risk of dying.
The study findings come as emergency care performance across England continues to deteriorate and pressures in hospitals mean more patients are waiting longer than four hours in A&E wards than ever before.
Our health correspondent Rebecca Thomas has the full story below:
Thomas KingleyJanuary 19, 2022 07:33
Former FDA chief says Omicron could be the end of Covid
During an appearance on CBCC scream box, Dr Gottlieb said researchers were cautiously optimistic that Omicron would become the dominant strain of the coronavirus.
“We’ve seen this virus continue to drift and undergo gradual evolution… there’s a presumption at some point we’re going to have a dominant lineage,” he said. “The conventional wisdom right now is that it’s likely to be Omicron.”
Stuti MishraJanuary 19, 2022 06:39
England set to ease Plan B Covid restrictions
Boris Johnson is expected to lift the Covid Plan B measures in England after his cabinet meeting on Wednesday morning to review the restrictions.
The Prime Minister is due to make an announcement in Parliament in the afternoon, with directives on mask-wearing and working from home set to be scrapped.
Ahead of Wednesday’s meeting, Sajid Javid told MPs he was “cautiously optimistic” that regulations could be “significantly reduced” and that the peak of the Omicron wave had passed.
Stuti MishraJanuary 19, 2022 05:52
Pandemic is ‘far from over’, warns WHO chief
Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director-general of the WHO, said the pandemic was “far from over” and warned that new variants are likely to emerge during a press briefing on Tuesday.
“Omicron continues to sweep the world; last week there were over 18 million reported cases,” Dr. Tedros said. “The number of deaths remains stable at the moment but we are concerned about the impact Omicron is having on already exhausted health workers and overstretched health systems.”
“In some countries, cases appear to have peaked, giving hope that the worst of this latest wave has passed, but no country is off the hook yet,” he added. “I remain particularly concerned about many countries that have low vaccination rates because people are at much greater risk of serious illness and death if they are not vaccinated.”
“Omicron may be less severe, on average, but the narrative that it is a mild disease is misleading, harms the overall response and costs more lives,” he added. “Make no mistake, Omicron is causing hospitalizations and deaths, and even the mildest cases are flooding healthcare facilities.
“The virus is circulating far too intensely and many are still vulnerable.”
“For many countries, the next few weeks remain truly critical for health workers and health systems and I urge everyone to do their best to reduce the risk of infection so that you can help reduce the pressure. on the system.”
Stuti MishraJanuary 19, 2022 05:39
welcome to The IndependentLive coverage of the coronavirus pandemic. Stay tuned for ongoing updates and stats.
Stuti MishraJanuary 19, 2022 04:52