Thursday, 29 Jul 2021

Covid cases surge among young men coinciding with Euro 2020, new data suggests

Dr Hilary says Lambda covid variant is ‘concern’

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Data from Public Health England (PHE) suggests the number of people testing positive for the virus has rapidly increased since the Euro 2020 football tournament began in June. The PHE data showed 10,267 more cases in men than women over the last two weeks.

Covid cases have remained equal between men and women throughout the pandemic, but since the football final, cases have increased disproportionately in men.

The latest data comes as the UK prepares to end all lockdown restrictions on Monday, July 19.

Covid rules will be scrapped from law but ministers and other political leaders are urging the public to continue to wear face coverings in crowded spaces and public transport.

No10 has said facemasks were still “expected and recommended” even after July 19.

The Prime Minister has told the public to exercise “extreme caution” and to take “personal responsibility” wherever possible.

The PHE data also suggests the 20-29 age group is now leading Covid cases, as youngsters are the last group to be vaccinated.

Experts have argued the recent rise in Covid cases among young men has been caused by gatherings to watch the football – including revelling in the streets, homes and pubs.

Huge crowds of people gathered across the nation to cheer on the England squad in the Euro 2020 final – many of which did not observe social distancing.

While there has been no confirmed link between the Euro gatherings and the sudden surge, Scottish scientists have previously made a connection between cases and watching the England v Scotland game on June 18.

Public Health Scotland (PHS) confirmed over 1,200 cases were linked to fans who had travelled to London to watch the Euro 2020 matches.

In a report, the health service said: “PHS is working with Test & Protect and NHS boards to ensure that all public health actions are taken in the close contacts of these Euro 2020 cases as part of the 32,539 cases that were reported to the Test & Protect Case Management System during this period (June 11-28).”

On Thursday, Chris Whitty, the UK’s chief medical officer, warned the epidemic could easily “get into trouble again surprisingly fast.”

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He said: “We are not by any means out of the woods yet on this, we are in much better shape due to the vaccine programme, and drugs and a variety of other things.

“But this has got a long way to run in the UK, and it’s got even further to run globally.”

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