Coronavirus UK News on January 23, 2021: PM Johnson's Comments on Coronavirus Variant Criticized

Coronavirus UK News on January 23, 2021 PM Johnson's Comments on Coronavirus Variant Criticized

Coronavirus UK News on January 23, 2021: PM Johnson's Comments on Coronavirus Variant Criticized

Prime Minister Johnson caused unrest with his comments on the virus mutation discovered in Great Britain. Even with experts - they are amazed at his statements.

British experts have expressed their surprise at Prime Minister Boris Johnson's statements about a possibly higher mortality rate for the virus variant found in Great Britain. Several investigations were ongoing. It was "not entirely clear" that the mutant was more deadly, said Public Health England medical director Yvonne Doyle on BBC Radio 4. "It's too early to say that." There are hints. But, "These are only a small number of cases and it is far too early to say what will actually come out," said Doyle.

Sage expert panel scientist Mike Tildesley told the BBC it was too early to be clear. "I would like to wait a week or two and do some analysis before we come to any really strong conclusions." The number of deaths has increased slightly, from 10 to 13 per 1000 patients. "But that's based on a pretty small amount of data," said Tildesley. He was very surprised that Johnson announced the information at a press conference. "I'm concerned that we are rushing to report things when the data isn't really meaningful," said Tildesley.

Prime Minister Johnson had said the previous evening that there was "some evidence" that the variant is more deadly than the previous one. The mutation B.1.1.7 had appeared in the southeastern county of Kent at the end of last year and had spread rapidly in London and parts of the country. With viruses, random changes in the genetic material, called mutations, occur constantly. Some give the pathogen advantages - for example by making it easier to transmit. According to British experts, the variant that has appeared in Great Britain is 30 to 70 percent easier to transfer than the previous one.

The virus variant has already arrived in Germany and is causing great concern. The virologist Christian Drosten from the Berlin Charit√© said that there could be up to 100,000 new infections a day in the summer if the number of cases did not decrease consistently. Leading politicians such as Chancellor Angela Merkel and Health Minister Jens Spahn also warned of the danger posed by the mutated virus.

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