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Doc Hines - Covid News & Views - 8th September 2021

Predictably, as the schools returned the number of daily tests for Covid rose by nearly 250,000 yesterday, but otherwise the statistics just slowly continue the gradual increases we have become used to.

Positive tests amounted to 37,489 yesterday and 38,975 today. There have been 15.3% more positive tests in the last 7 days compared to the previous week. The positive rate is now 377.4 per 100k of the population.The number of deaths is 191 today or 932 in the last 7 days, This is a significant 26.1% rise over the weeks and figure is reflected in a rise in the overall mortality to 1.2 per 100,000 of the population.

The number of covid patients requiring admission on a single day rose from 905 on the 3rd September to 933 on the 4th of September. The number actually in hospital has dropped slightly from 7976 on 6th September to 7,907 on the 7th September. Whilst this is pleasing, it may be a quirk and we now must wait to see if this a trend that continues. The number of patients managed on a ventilator has also dropped slightly from 1,062 to 1,047.

The immunisation statistics show we have hit the 80% mark for the second vaccines with 43.6 million or 80.3% done. We are almost there now with 1st vaccines at 88.9%. We need to get this figure to 95% or more. It will take far too long, at the snail’s pace, it is creeping upwards. It is not too late to have one final push to persuade our hesitant friends and relatives to get immunised.

The Government have said that from November 11th all staff in a registered Care home must be fully immunised against covid 19 if they wish to continue working unless they are medically exempt. This means they must have started a two-dose course by September 16th.Genuine medical exemptions are very rare. So far there are no signs of guidance concerning those who are exempt. With the current numbers refusing, the country may be thrown into a degree of chaos on 11th November. If home are likely to close we need to have personal contingency plans to care for those affected. The NHS has already said no jab no job as a condition of employment. They will have to enforce this strongly for staff trying to move from the care sector to the NHS. There will not be spare beds in the NHS, who want to make a start on the NHS back log.

There have been 53 cases of the new Mu variant detected now in the UK. In the USA, 49 states have reported cases . Florida and California have reported hundreds of cases. It is still not thought to be major threat as it is at present, but it remains a variant of interest only. There have been some leaks suggesting that rather than consider further lockdowns, the Government is planning potential firebreaks for the second half of November and over half term. They also plan to introduce formal passports for Nightclubs etc, once the younger teenagers have had a chance to be fully immunised. The informal use at present for many locations seems to have worked well. I do strongly recommend you also obtain a printed version of your vaccine record in case you find yourself with poor signals or a flat battery and are unable to display your status on the app.

Following our discussion on consent on Monday I was pleased to see plans to allow the child’s opinion to prevail are being considered with plans that mediation could occur at school between parent and child when there is disagreement.

Two hospitals in West London have had to return to severely restricting visiting again following a rise in the number of infected inpatients. Russia report they had 18,000 more cases every day and 797 deaths in the last 24 hours. A third person has died in Japan after being given a contaminated Moderna jab from a contaminated batch. The number was known, and all doses should have been withdrawn before administration.

Novovax have begun trial of the combined covid/ influenza vaccine in Australia. The study will involve 640 adults between the ages 50 and 74.

Germany has seen a rapid rise in patients requiring to be in hospital. The number in their ITUs have doubled in the last two weeks and now involve 1,300 patients. Dingwall Academy in the Scottish Highlands had to close at lunch time today because of an outbreak in the staff of the school, some have the disease others having to isolate prior to testing.

Please keep your comments and questions coming. Just facts and figures are a bit dull, I hope to include more discussion but need your help.

Please continue all the precautions you are used to. The basic ones remain the best. Hands face and space, do not be bullied into going shopping without a mask. Be kind to others especially those who are vulnerable and frightened of the way people are avoiding guidelines. Most importantly stay safe.

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