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England’s deputy chief medical officer has said the rise in the number of coronavirus cases is of great concern and that people had “relaxed too much” over the summer, as Matt Hancock urged young people in particular to stick to physical distancing rules.

The UK recorded 2,948 daily confirmed cases of Covid-19, according to government data published on Monday, the second biggest 24-hour rise since May.

New case numbers had been at about 1,000 a day for most of August, but have increased sharply in recent days. Britain’s testing capacity has also increased since the peak of the first wave earlier this year.

“People have relaxed too much,” Prof Jonathan Van-Tam said. “Now is the time for us to re-engage and realise that this is a continuing threat to us.

“It’s all very well saying that hospital admissions and deaths are at a very low level in the UK, which is true, but if you look further into the European Union, you can see that where case numbers rise initially in the younger parts of the population, they do, in turn, filter through and start to give elevated rates of disease and hospital admissions in the older age groups, and we know that that then becomes a serious public health problem.”

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source: The Guardian
published: 7 September 2020

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