Covid-19 Daily Bulletin
16 February 2021
A series of daily updates for CHO members regarding relevant updates pertaining to Coronavirus from home and abroad.
- The number of people who tested positive for the virus yesterday in the UK was 9,765. Sadly, 230 people lost their lives within 28 days of testing positive for the virus.
- As of the 14 February, 15,300,151 people had received the first dose of a vaccine in the UK.
- This week, the government announced that everyone in the most at-risk groups for coronavirus have been offered a vaccination, with more than 15 million jabs achieved in less than 10 weeks.
- In a Downing Street press conference last night, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that letters would be sent offering appointments to all those aged 65-69, as well as all those over 16 with underlying medical conditions and adult carers. He added that everyone in the first 9 priority groups were to be offered a vaccine by the end of April, as well as second doses.
- During the press conference, Johnson also stated that some early data seems to suggest that the vaccine was having a strong impact on serious illness and death but also on transmission. Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty also said “the earliest indications would imply there is some effect, but it’s too early to be able to put a number on it. We would expect to see some evidence that is strong enough to put into the public domain in the next few weeks.”
- Vaccines Minister Nadhim Zahawi has told Sky News that the government was battling a “tsunami of disinformation” when it comes to coronavirus jabs . He also told Sky that those who were coronavirus “vaccine hesitant” tend to “skew heavily” towards BAME communities.
- Scotland First Minister Nicola Sturgeon is to announce whether some pupils will start to return to Scottish classrooms from next week in a statement at Holyrood. She said she was “very keen” to begin a phased return of young pupils in schools. She has however warned that this would not mark the broader easing of covid-19 restrictions.
- In Wales, Dr Gill Richardson has said that the roll out of the Covid-19 vaccine can now “fly” . This comes as 1 in 4 people in Wales have now received the first does of a Covid-19 vaccine.
- It is being reported that Israel’s vaccination programme is suggesting the Pfizer jab prevents 94 per cent of symptomatic infections.
- Newly-appointed head of the World Trade Organization (WTO) Ngozi Okonjo -Iweala has told the BBC that vaccine protectionism must be overcome to solve the pandemic.
- The Resolution Foundation has published a report today on tackling the UK’s building arrears crisis . It found that 9 per cent of families in the social rented sector were behind with their housing payments in January 2021, alongside 6 per cent of those renting privately and 2 per cent of mortgaged homeowners. The report has some recommendations including retaining the UC uplift at £20 a week and introducing a tenant loan scheme, along with requirements on landlords to mediate.
- Politico is reporting that Public Health England’s COVID Response Director Dr Susan Hopkins has been privately warning that ministers including the Health Secretary Matt Hancock have been pursuing “science by press release”, by announcing new information to the press before leading experts know about it.
- Whitehall sources are suggesting that all over 50s could have their first covid-19 vaccine before the end of March.