A sign will be seen in Mevagissey, United Kingdom on July 29, 2021 warning people not to stay separated due to Covid-19.
Finnbarr Webster | Getty Images News | Getty Images
LONDON – Jenny Harries, CEO of the UK Health Security Agency, has issued a strong warning of the threat the new heavily mutated variant of Covid-19 omicron poses to the country.
Harries said the new strain was “likely the most significant threat” since the coronavirus pandemic began.
“For example, I’m sure the numbers we’ll see in the data over the next few days will be pretty staggering compared to the growth rate we’ve seen in cases for previous variants,” she told one on Wednesday British Legislators Committee.
“The real potential risk here – and I want to emphasize that we are still learning a lot about the variant – depends on the severity and clinical severity, and thus whether these cases lead to serious illness, hospital admissions and deaths. The world is still for that too early. In fact, the world is probably too early to be clear, “she added.
Their comments came just before the UK reported a record 78,610 new daily Covid-19 cases in the past 24 hours on Wednesday.
The number was an increase from 59,610 the previous day, beating the previous high of 68,053 cases reported on Jan. 8.
It underscores the dramatic surge in infections the country is experiencing ahead of the holiday season, with the Omicron variant expected to quickly become the dominant strain.
Long lines outside vaccination centers have been seen in many UK towns and cities, with the government running its booster program into full swing to try to get as many people as possible to get a third vaccination.
While the death toll currently remains low and initial reports suggest that the Omicron variant may not be more serious than other strains of Covid, health experts have repeatedly warned that the sheer number of infections could lead to rising deaths and an overwhelmed health system .
Harries also said on Wednesday: “We don’t know what’s going to happen. But right now there are signs that it could be as big or even bigger at this time of last year. So let’s prepare for it.”