Related video: Minister ‘cannot guarantee’ self-isolation for double-shot Britons to end on August 16
Already, dozens of trains, including a London Underground line, have been forced to suspend service due to associated staff shortages.
Figures on Thursday showed more than 600,000 people had been alerted by the NHS Test and Trace app to self-isolate after close contact with someone who tested positive for Covid-19.
Meanwhile, Public Health England has confirmed that a new variant of the coronavirus is under investigation in the UK.
Sixteen cases of the variant known as B.1.621 have been identified across the country, most of which have been linked to travel abroad, with no apparent community transmission.
PHE said it doesn’t appear to make vaccines less effective or cause more serious illness.
Childhood respiratory infections increase before winter in response to covid-19 restrictions
Health chiefs in England are urging parents to be vigilant about signs of respiratory illness in young children because data from Public Health England (PHE) revealed that cases are starting to increase in parts of the country.
PHE said respiratory illnesses including the common cold and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) are very common among young children, which they see every year.
But, last winter due to the various restrictions put in place to reduce the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), there were far fewer infections among younger people.
This means that many will not have developed immunity and so we might see more cases this year than in a typical season, PHE warned.
For the majority of children, these illnesses will not be serious and they will recover quickly after rest and plenty of hydration.
Charlene RodriguesJuly 23, 2021 8:02 PM
Simon Calder’s expert travel advice for your most pressing vacation questions
As we all try to navigate through the summer holidays and the UK’s increasingly complex traffic light system for international travel, The independents travel correspondent answers your most pressing travel questions.
From “amber plus” to foreign vaccinations, Simon calder reports.
Celine WadheraJuly 23, 2021 7:55 PM
Avanti West Coast and London Northwestern Railway cut services
Avanti West Coast will cut trains on its connections between London Euston and Manchester, Birmingham and North Wales, from Monday.
A spokesperson said the cuts were intended to “manage staff shortages and ensure reliable service.”
The London Northwestern Railway is also expected to introduce a revised timetable with fewer services from Saturday.
Lawrence Bowman, Director of Customer Experience for LNR, said, “No one wants to see trains canceled, especially in the short term.
“But we are experiencing more of it in all of our departments as more and more staff are surveyed by the Test and Trace app.
“We are sorry to have had to make the decision to modify certain services. However, the changes will help us manage a more reliable and consistent schedule for passengers on our network. “
Celine WadheraJuly 23, 2021 7:36 PM
Covid patients in English hospitals up 30% in one week
The number of Covid patients in English hospitals increased by 30.7% in one week, reaching the highest level in four months.
Latest figures from NHS England show 4,401 hospital beds were occupied by confirmed Covid patients on Friday, the highest figure since March 22
The current figures are up from the 3,367 Covid patients hospitalized on July 16.
The North East and Yorkshire had the highest number of occupied hospital beds, reporting 1,026 hospitalized Covid patients.
While increasing, the number of people hospitalized with Covid-19 remains well below the peak which saw 34,336 people hospitalized on January 18.
Celine WadheraJuly 23, 2021 7:17 PM
UKHospitality Chief: “We are now facing a summer of closures”
UKHospitality chief executive Kate Nichols said the hospitality industry was ‘left with the consequences’ of the ‘pingemia’ because it was not included in the government’s list of critical workers exempt from auto -isolation.
She said: “We are now facing a summer of site closures and reduced service when we should be at a seasonal peak. The industry will do everything possible to provide excellent service, but now it will be with one hand tied behind the back.
“Those who are fully vaccinated should be able to test after a ping and, subject to a negative result, continue with their lives. For those who are not fully vaccinated, two negative tests should be enough to return to work. “
Celine WadheraJuly 23, 2021 7:02 PM
Voice: As a Japanese citizen and consultant, I know why the Tokyo Olympics have become such a disaster
“The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games are a classic example of organizational mismanagement and misaligned incentives, and proof of the dangers of insular and undiversified leadership,” writes Aya Shimada, Japanese citizen and Wall Street consultant.
In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, in many ways watching the preparations for the Tokyo Olympics has been like ‘watching a runaway train’.
Celine WadheraJuly 23, 2021 6:43 PM
Thameslink and Southern rail services cut weekday schedules
Thameslink and Southern rail services will reduce their weekday schedules on five routes starting Monday, warning that further changes may be needed, including on weekends.
Steve White, COO at Govia Thameslink Railway, said: “Unfortunately, we had to make the difficult decision to cut some services on weekdays.
“Unfortunately, like other industries across the country, the coronavirus continues to affect our operations.
“We have fewer colleagues available at the moment due to a recent significant increase in the number of people or people affected by Covid-19.
“Our colleagues have continued to work tirelessly throughout the pandemic and we are very sorry for any inconvenience caused by the latest changes.
“By introducing reduced hours now, it will help reduce short-term cancellations and give customers more certainty.
“We strongly advise passengers to check before traveling, including on weekends.”
Celine WadheraJuly 23, 2021 6:24 PM
Nine out of 10 ambulance trusts in England are now at the highest level of pressure
Nine out of 10 ambulance trusts in England are currently operating at their highest level of demand as summer NHS crisis worsens, health correspondent writes Shaun lintern.
The volume of 999 calls made by the public, coupled with long delays in hospitals, are fueling extraordinary waits for ambulances – up to 28 hours in some cases.
The West Midlands Ambulance Service said some 999 callers classified as urgent but not life threatening will no longer receive an ambulance unless a paramedic speaks to the patient and confirms an ambulance is necessary.
Celine WadheraJuly 23, 2021 6:05 PM
Government announces additional Covid support to seven local authorities in the northeast to slow the Delta variant
The government has announced that additional support for Covid is being rolled out to seven local authorities in the northeast to slow the growth of the Delta variant, Sky News reported.
These local authorities include Tyne and Wear, Northumberland, County Durham and five local authorities in the Tees Valley, areas which currently have some of the highest Covid rates in the country.
Support is expected to start Monday and run for five weeks. It will include the possibility of providing additional testing, logistical support to maximize the use of vaccines and tests, and support for local public health campaigns.
Public Health Minister Jo Churchill said: “As the data changes, it is essential that our public health response continues to change with it.
“By working closely with local authorities and public health directors, this additional support should help turn the tide on this growing number of cases and expand the wall of protection that vaccines are creating in the country.
“We all have a role to play in the continued fight against the virus and our message is clear: the best thing we can all do to protect ourselves and our loved ones is to get bitten.
“If you haven’t received your first or second dose, I urge you to reserve your vaccination at the earliest opportunity. “
Celine WadheraJuly 23, 2021 5:45 PM
BMA calls for “urgent rethinking” of the government’s Covid strategy
The British Medical Association has called for an “urgent overhaul” of the government’s Covid strategy, arguing that it “is not working” and is increasing pressure on health services.
BMA board chairman Dr Chaand Nagpaul said the government should never have abandoned the restrictions as infection rates skyrocket, and added that the situation “will continue to worsen as a result. “.
He also said the focus on ‘excessive pings’ related to the NHS Test and Trace app was a direct result of the government’s decision to allow the virus to ‘release’ across the country, putting people at risk. thousands of lives and fueling a long Covid crisis.
Scientific correspondent Samuel lovett reports.
Celine WadheraJuly 23, 2021 5:43 PM