British expert warns of new Covid wave due to Indian variant

London, May 31 (EFE).- Microbiologist Ravi Gupta, an advisor to the UK government, warned Monday that the UK is in the early stages of a new wave of coronavirus infections fuelled by the Indian variant.

The lifting of all restrictions expected on June 21 should be postponed, Gupta told BBC Radio 4, adding that infections are rising exponentially and that at least three quarters of cases are attributed to the new variant.

The University of Cambridge professor recommended the lifting of restrictions be delayed “a few weeks whilst we gather more intelligence.”

“If you look at the costs and benefits of getting it wrong, I think it is heavily in favor of delay,” said the scientist, a member of the government’s New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (Nervtag).

Adam Finn, from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunization, also voiced concerns to Sky News about having set a date to end restrictions instead of adapting dynamically to the virus.

“The mistake is going to be to rush forwards and then fall flat on our faces by rushing forwards too fast,” he said.

Environment Secretary George Eustice insisted that the government will make its decision on June 14 depending on how the situation evolves, and said to the BBC that all options are still being considered.

On June 7, the UK government is expected to update its green list of countries it considers safe to travel to, with no quarantine restrictions imposed on travelers upon return.

The UK registered 3,240 infections in 24 hours Sunday, 26.8% more than the week before.

Since the start of the pandemic in March 2020, the country has registered 4.48 million infections and 127,781 deaths, while 25.3 million adults have received both doses of the vaccine. EFE

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