Matthew Hancock, Health secretary for Parliament, told MPS today that London, and parts of Herefordshire and Essex will go into Tier THREE from Wednesday. The health secretary confirmed that a “huge spike in cases” has been observed recently in this area, and therefore a tightening of restrictions on social activities and movement of people would be needed to control the spread of Covid-19.
Meanwhile, Matt Hancock has also released information that “new variants”, in other words mutations, may be responsible for the recent increases in covid-19 infections in some local areas. He stated in parliament today “Over the last few days, thanks to our world-class genomic capability in the UK, we have identified a new variant of coronavirus which may be associated with the faster spread in the South of England”.
Mutating of viruses is common according to the scientific literature. In fact, Covid-19 has been documented by the science to have mutated several times during it’s spread across the global population, as per the following image found from Cambridge University.
The health secretary said: “I must stress at this point that there is currently nothing to suggest that this variant is more likely to cause serious disease and the latest clinical advice is that it’s highly unlikely that this mutation would fail to respond to a vaccine, but it shows we’ve got to be vigilant and follow the rules and everyone needs to take personal responsibility not to spread this virus.”
For more information what Tier 3 restrictions mean, please see the following information poster:
The restrictions are arriving at critical time for many businesses, economically. With the decreased business approaching Christmas, the closure and bankruptcy of many smaller businesses is deemed very likely.
According to the recent statistics, an increase from 506.3 cases per 100,000 from 321.3 in the borough of Havering occurred from the week up to December 2nd to the following week, up to December 9th. Under these tier three restrictions, social gatherings for those not in the same support bubble are banned. However, this is permitted in some official environments. It is stated that schools and educational places will remain open during this period.