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UK hospitals witness a surge in the number of virus-infected patients

According to renowned specialists attempting to calm fears about the ‘new wave,’ Britain’s Covid revival was unavoidable.

The number of cases has risen in the last two weeks, and hospitals have witnessed a surge in the number of virus-infected patients, raising fears that the worst is yet to come. Experts worry that it will put even greater on on an already overburdened health system.

Left-leaning scientists, who were critical of No10’s decision to relax regulations, have already called for a return to mask-wearing and urged Britons to gather outside due to an increase in infections caused by more transmissible strains of Omicron.

However, an ex-Government adviser today stated such fears were unfounded, claiming that the virus no longer poses the same threat it previously did due to the country’s high levels of immunity resulting from multiple waves and vaccine efforts.

‘It’s vital not to allow ourselves get scared by any increase of positive tests unless it’s evident that these are genuinely resulting in increases in serious sickness,’ Professor Robert Dingwall, a sociologist at Nottingham Trent University, told MailOnline.

‘Vaccination and past infection have given the population a high level of immunity.’

‘Reviving restrictions such as mask regulations would be premature, especially given the lack of proof that there is any widespread benefit.’

Other specialists predicted that cases of the virus, which many believe is evolving into a new cause of the common cold, would resurface on a regular basis.

Cases have begun to climb for the first time since April, when the final batch of restrictions were lifted and No10 formally ushered in the post-pandemic period, according to data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS), the only reliable source of infection data.

In its most recent weekly report, the government estimated that 797,500 people in England were infected, or one in every 70 people.

The amount was up 1.7% from the previous week’s estimate of 784,100 people infected with the virus.

The increase comes after two months of falling instances, which had reached record highs at the end of March, when 4.1 million people in England were thought to be infected.

And the most recent forecast, for the week ending June 2, was the second-lowest since September.

In the meantime, the number of Covid admissions in England has risen by 24.1% in the last week. On June 12, 659 people were admitted to the hospital, up from 531 the week before.

Although the number of ventilator beds occupied by infected patients has increased, it is still less than 150, which is up to 25 times lower than levels reported during the pandemic’s deadliest days.

However, evidence suggests that two-thirds of Covid patients in hospitals aren’t actually sick with the virus and only test positive by chance.

The spread of BA.4 and BA.5, Omicron sub-variants thought to be much more infectious than the currently prevalent strain BA.2, has been blamed for the rise in cases.

Some have cited the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee festivities, which saw millions of people attend street parties around the UK and 22,000 people attend a concert at Buckingham Palace over the bank holiday weekend.

Independent SAGE, a pressure organization that previously advocated for a zero-Covid policy, turned to Twitter to demand that masks be worn indoors and meetings be held outside.

‘There is another wave of Covid kicking off,’ said Dr Kit Yates, a mathematician at the University of Bath and a member of Indy SAGE.

‘The good news is that the same strategies that worked in the past will also work against new varieties.’ In enclosed settings, wear a mask. If possible, meet outside rather than indoors. Indoor rooms should be ventilated.’

‘We may expect the current UK wave to add to stresses on an already beleaguered NHS – sadly, if hospitalizations increase (as they do now), deaths will inevitably increase with a lag,’ said Dr Deepti Gurdasani, a clinical epidemiologist at Queen Mary University London.

‘Long Covid, which has already increased significantly during the Omicron waves, will do the same.

‘Given that transmission is high and increasing (and that we don’t know what current infection rates are based on lagged surveillance alone), it’s worth taking precautions.

‘Even supercharged folks can have lengthy Covid. The rate of occurrence is still high.’

BA.4 and BA.5 are considered varieties of concern by the UK Health Security Agency.

According to data from the Sanger Institute, one of the UK’s main Covid surveillance centers, their frequency has virtually doubled every week.

Both strains combined accounted for 41.7 percent of infections in the week ending June 4, up from 21.2 percent in the week ending May 28 and just 11 percent in the week prior.

When infections reached pandemic levels in March, the dominant strain BA.2, which was responsible for nearly all cases, currently accounted for only 57 percent of cases.

In comparison to BA.2, UKHSA scientists believe the two strains can better evade immunity gained from past infection and vaccination.

Professor Paul Hunter, an epidemiologist at the University of East Anglia, told MailOnline that the death of BA.2 made it “inevitable” that instances would rise, and that the bank holiday weekend may have exacerbated infections.

Professor Hunter, on the other hand, believes the recent increase in hospital admissions in England is ‘probably too soon’ to be due to the BA.4 and BA.5 strains.

The increase in cases in March did not result in debilitating ICU pressure or deaths, demonstrating the efficacy of the immunization campaign.

The NHS, on the other hand, warned that the surge in patients was making it difficult to keep up with the Covid-fueled backlog of normal treatment.

Following the spring deployment, millions of the most vulnerable have already received four immunizations.

Another campaign will begin this autumn, with over-65s, care home residents, frontline NHS professionals, and at-risk over-16s receiving booster shots to protect them from a winter revival.

Despite worry from certain quarters, when Boris Johnson decided to treat Covid like flu in the spring, he promised not to reinstall any economically ruinous restrictions.

It comes as Imperial College London researchers today warned that catching Omicron does not protect you from catching it again, which could explain why instances are ‘persistently high.’

Earlier strains, such as Alpha, Beta, and Delta, were found to provide cross-protection against other strains, according to studies conducted during the pandemic. This meant that those who had been infected before were less likely to become sick again if they came into touch with someone who was.

However, Imperial experts claim that Omicron provides ‘absolutely no further immunity,’ putting them at danger of contracting the virus again.

The researchers looked at blood samples from 731 NHS personnel who had been triple-jabbed with Pfizer or Moderna to figure out why so many people had been reinfected with Omicron.

An Omicron infection enhanced immunity against previous strains of the virus but not against Omicron itself in doctors who had never tested positive for Covid.

There was no ‘any immune boosting’ in the group that had previously been infected and later caught Omicron.

Despite these findings, experts believe the UK is in a good position with Covid because to high vaccine uptake and the mild nature of Omicron.

‘It’s vital to understand the diverse behaviors of the immune system, and this is a careful scientific study,’ said Professor Keith Willison, a chemical biologist at Imperial College London who was not involved in the study.

‘Vaccination continues to protect people from serious disease and hospitalization, and fortunately, the Omicron variation only causes mild disease.’

‘Life must go on without masks or isolation here.’ In comparison to China, which has a disastrous zero-covid policy and poor vaccine quality and uptake among the elderly, the UK is in a favorable position.’

In England, 93.1 percent of people have received their first Covid shot, while 87 percent have had two shots and 68.4% have had three shots.

Meanwhile, Beijing, China’s capital, initiated a new crackdown on Monday in the wake of a ‘ferocious’ Omicron outbreak that is thought to have spread from only one individual.

Authorities in China’s capital have linked the partygoer to a rowdy 24-hour pub notorious for cheap liquor and large crowds, with millions of people being subjected to obligatory drug testing and thousands being placed under targeted lockdowns.

Nearly 200 instances have already been linked to the center Heaven Supermarket Bar, which reopened last week as Beijing’s limitations were loosened.

Approximately 10,000 close contacts of the bar’s clientele have been identified, and their residential structures have been placed under lockdown, as well as the postponement of several planned school reopenings in the district.

According to Reuters eyewitnesses, lines snaked for more than 100 meters around some testing sites on Monday.

Several home compounds have been surrounded by large metal barricades, with personnel in hazardous suits spraying disinfectant nearby.

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