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UK Covid cases near 50,000 in one day as No 10 warns of ‘challenging’ winter

Covid cases

UK Covid cases near 50,000 in one day as No 10 warns of ‘challenging’ winter

The reported number of Covid cases in the UK increased steadily through October and reached 49,156 on Monday, the highest reported since 17 July and a 16% rise in new cases over the past week.

Downing Street has warned of “challenging” months ahead as UK coronavirus cases reached their highest level since mid-July.

The figure is only 19,000 cases short of the peak number of cases ever recorded in the UK. On 8 January 2021, 68,053 new cases were reported at the height of the most devastating wave of the pandemic last winter.

The prime minister’s official spokesperson said a rise in coronavirus cases was expected over the winter and that the government would keep a “close watch” on the statistics.

Hospitalisations and deaths are also increasing according to Monday’s data, with 5,561 people admitted to hospital over the past week, up 6.9% on the week before, and the number dying within 28 days of testing positive reaching 869 over the past seven days, up 11.4% on the week before.

“We always knew the coming months would be challenging,” Boris Johnson’s official spokesperson said. “What we are seeing is case rates, hospitalisations and deaths still broadly in line with the modelling as set out a few months back now. The vaccination programme will continue to be our first line of defence, along with new treatments, testing and public health advice. But we will obviously keep a close watch on cases.”

The rise in UK cases is largely driven by infections among secondary school children, though some older age groups, including those who have children in school, are also experiencing rises. Hospitalisations and deaths are mostly driven by infections in older and more vulnerable groups, including those whose immunity has started to wane.

Dr Kit Yates, a mathematical biologist at the University of Bath and a member of the Independent Sage group of experts, said that with Britain nearing 50,000 cases on Monday, there had been only 16 days throughout the whole pandemic when cases were higher in the UK.

“The narrative has become that case numbers aren’t important, but they still are,” he said. “They don’t mean the same as they did before vaccination, but the link between cases and deaths has not been broken. We are seeing over 120 deaths a day on average, which for me is unacceptable. Just glancing at the numbers from our neighbours in Europe demonstrates that it didn’t have to be this way.”

Prof Andrew Hayward, who advises the government on the Covid crisis, told BBC Radio 4’s World At One that it was concerning the UK had very high rates of infection and higher rates of hospitalisation and death than many European countries, adding that waning immunity was probably one reason for infections being so high.

“We shouldn’t be complacent because there is still huge potential for the NHS to come under a lot of pressure and for there to be a lot of unnecessary deaths,” he said. “So we need to get the vaccination rates up and we need to be prepared potentially to think about other measures if things do get out of control.”

Earlier this month, Prof Neil Ferguson, head of the influential modelling team at Imperial College London, called for teenage vaccines and boosters to be accelerated to reduce the risk of a substantial wave this winter.

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Health

12 State Governors Owing Us, Health Workers Cry Out

The Medical and Health Workers Union of Nigeria MHWUN, has cried out that governors of 12 states of Nigeria are unfair to their members by owing them several years of salary arrears and also failed to standardise their payments .

The medical body noted that the worst of it all is that these governors have failed to implement the N30,000 new minimum wage that has become a law in the country.

They said the governors have subjected them to harrowing life.

The MHWUN National Vice President , Femi Adebisi stated this in Ado-Ekiti, the Ekiti state capital at the weekend during the 2022 international youth day organized by the South West leadership of the union, under the theme , ‘Intergenerational solidarity : creating a world for all ages.’

Adebisi said the welfare of health workers remains the only recipe to the recurrent brain drain crippling the health sector.

He however, did not identify the affected 12 states.

“We have nothing less than 12 states that are owing health workers their entitlements.We are engaging them as a union and we are hoping the governors and everyone concern will do the needful soon”, he stated.

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Health

Pay Hazard Allowance To Health Workers, NLC Urges F.G

The President of the Nigeria Labour Congress, Mr Ayuba Wabba, has urged the Federal Government to immediately begin the payment of hazard allowance to health workers in the country.

Wabba made the call at the 2022 annual Federal Capital Territory Nurses Week/Scientific Workshop of the National Association of Nigeria Nurses and Midwives on Thursday in Abuja.

At the workshop with the theme, “Invest in Nursing and respect rights to secure global health,” Wabba said the allowance has been reviewed but payment is yet to begin.

“Many health workers have fallen victim to diseases in taking care of patients. I salute the nurses and Midwives, your reward is not only in heaven but here on earth. I urge you to learn so you can discharge quality healthcare service to Nigerians.

“The payment of hazard allowance will boost the morale of our health workers in the country”, he added.

 

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Health

Cholera Outbreak Kills 10 In Gombe

Gombe state government has declared an outbreak of cholera after ten deaths were recorded across the state.

This was made public by Habu Dahiru, Gombe commissioner for health,  on Thursday.

Dahiru, who was represented by Abdulrahman Shuaibu, executive secretary of the Gombe Primary Health Care Development Agency, said as of September 20, 236 cases of cholera had been recorded in the state.

“This year, from June, we had sporadic cases of cholera in Balanga LGA and because of the preparedness and prompt response; it has been largely subdued without escalation,” he said.

These outbreaks are recorded in eight wards across Balanga, Yamaltu-Deba, Nafada, Funakaye and Gombe LGA of the state.

“The state ministry of health has promptly initiated public health actions for prevention and control of the disease.

“As of September 20, there was an increase in the number of cases in Gombe state as 236 cases have been listed so far.”

The commissioner said increased downpour of rain and flooding in many parts of the state led to the cholera outbreak.

He said decontamination of wells and boreholes in affected communities would be carried out and distribution of water treatment tablets in all affected communities would be conducted.

 

 

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