U.K.’s New Daily Covid Cases Hit Highest Since January
(Bloomberg) -- The U.K. government is considering whether tougher rules are needed to curb a “deeply concerning” new wave of the pandemic, as daily infections soared to the highest level since the start of the year.
“We absolutely need to keep everything under review,” Cabinet minister Michael Gove told broadcasters on Friday after he led an emergency meeting with leaders of the devolved U.K. nations. The meeting was “presented with some very challenging new information” and the country is facing a “deeply concerning situation,” he said.
Gove’s warning came as more than 58,000 new cases were reported on Friday, the highest number since Jan. 9. The omicron variant was identified in 448 of the cases, compared to 249 a day earlier, and U.K. health officials expect it to become the dominant strain by the middle of December.
Johnson’s government announced a move to so-called Plan B measures this week, including indoor mask-wearing and work-from-home guidance, as omicron spreads rapidly. Certain settings, such as nightclubs or large venues, will be required to check for proof of vaccination or a negative test.
“As new data comes in, we will consider what action we do need to take in the face of that data,” Gove said. “The approach we are taking is proportionate.”
The number of people in hospital with coronavirus totaled 7,413, roughly on par with numbers from a week ago. A further 120 people have died from coronavirus in the past 24 hours.
©2021 Bloomberg L.P.