Despite the progress of the vaccination campaign and a long winter confinement, the United Kingdom has been confronted for a few weeks with an outbreak of contaminations attributed to the Delta variant, initially detected in India and much more contagious.
Bereaved by more than 128,000 deaths, the country, for example, recorded more than 18,000 new cases of coronavirus in 24 hours on Saturday.
Deconfinement put on hold
The deterioration of the health situation has also led the government to postpone by four weeks, until July 19, the lifting of the last restrictions still in place. This concerns the reopening of nightclubs, service at the bar and not just at the table in pubs, and the possibility of meeting more than six (or more than two households) inside.
In the columns of the daily De Morgen, Christina Pagel, member of the British expert group (the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies), explains that the number of contaminations should, within a few weeks, also sharply increase in Belgium because of the variant. Delta. “I see that in Belgium only 30% of the population is fully vaccinated. This is not how you are going to counter the Indian variant, ”she assures us.
The expert explains that the current situation in Great Britain is comparable to what happened at the beginning of the year, with the Alpha variant, the English variant: “These are two different epidemics. The old variant disappears, the numbers decrease, and then the new one appears. At first, you don’t see it in the numbers, until it becomes dominant, and the numbers increase. It will happen to you too, ”she warns.
Like many experts here, Christina Pagel therefore advocates caution in the various deconfinements. She believes that traveling remains dangerous and that the large gatherings that will take place on the occasion of Euro 2020 (60,000 people at Wembley for the semi-finals and the final), in particular, are bad ideas.
According to Christina Pagel, the Indian variant is not the last we will have to face. The dramatic situation in South America, Africa or much of Asia could lead to the development of new variants.