He went on to say that vaccines have prevented an estimated 39,000 hospitalisations and over 13,000 deaths, and that the NHS is on track to vaccinate all adults by the end of July.
His announcements come amid rising Covid-19 case rates across most of the UK.
New analysis from PA suggests that around three quarters of local authorities reported a week-on-week rise in the week to 2 June – the highest proportion since early January.
A total of 283 out of 380 areas recorded an uptick in cases, with the greatest numbers in London, northwest England and Scotland.
Good morning, and welcome to The Independent’s coverage of the coronavirus pandemic for Monday 07 June, 2021.
70 black fungus patients have adverse reaction after anti-fungal drug treatment
At least 70 black fungus patients have had an adverse reaction after they were injected with an anti-fungal drug, Amphotericin B, which is used widely in India to treat mucormycosis.
Two medical colleges in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh reported the adverse effects. Officials said the adverse reactions are due to a change in the formation of the drug which was supplied to medical colleges and hospitals, according to The Indian Express.
India to begin vaccine trials on children in national capital
India will begin screening of children for clinical trials of its indigenous vaccine Covaxin — made by Bharat Biotech — from today, according to media reports.
The trials will be conducted by the All India Institute of Medical Science in the national capital Delhi, NDTV reported.
Bharat Biotech received the nod from India’s drug regulator to conduct clinical trials on children last month. The trials are expected to involve 525 participants.
People miss second dose as Indian state grapples with severe vaccine shortage
The Indian state of Assam is facing a shortage of Covaxin — India’s indigenous vaccine made by Bharat Biotech — and has suspended administering it as the first dose temporarily.
The state government said last week that it would prioritise those who have to get their second dose of Covaxin.
But several people have taken to social media, saying they have either missed the second dose deadline or they are unable to find an appointment to schedule one.
Migrants begin returning to India’s national capital
Migrant workers have begun returning to India’s national capital Delhi as lockdown restrictions have been eased, according to media reports.
The Delhi government data estimated that at least 800,000 migrant workers left the national capital in the first four weeks of the lockdown that was imposed in April to contain the second wave of the pandemic.
Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal cautioned against lowering the guard as the government has allowed markets to open and metro services to resume from today.
NHS staff are ‘broken’ and ‘close to burnout’ after pandemic
NHS staff say they are “broken” and “close to burnout”.
Emily Ball, a GP in northwest England, told PA “general practice is a bit of a mess” and the abuse doctors receive is on the rise.
Doctors are “pretty broken and close to burnout”, she said, adding: “The stuff we are doing is greater than ever, and unfortunately so is the amount of abuse we are taking.”
She added that the government should proceed with caution when removing further lockdown restrictions.
“We know there’s still a lot of kind of unclear messaging going on, and I think unfortunately is people’s behaviour has been relaxing,” she said.
“And then the beaches are packed, nobody’s wearing a mask, there’s no social distancing, and you just want to weep.
“The NHS is still in crisis and we cannot cope as it is. Unlocking poses a real threat to it just collapsing, and my biggest concern is patient safety.”
‘Without question, there should be a pause,’ says one medic
Dating apps to offer perks to users who have been vaccinated
The government has partnered with a host of popular dating apps to try to boost vaccination uptake.
Users of Tinder, Hinge, Bumble, Badoo, Match, Plenty of Fish, Our Time and Muzmatch will be able to add badges and stickers to their profiles to indicate they’ve been vaccinated and gain perks including free “super likes”.
The Department of Health and Social Care said that providing vaccination status is optional, but that data suggests people are more likely to accept a date with someone who has had their jabs.
Vaccines minister Nadhim Zahawi said: “I am thrilled that we are partnering up with dating apps to boost vaccine uptake across the country.
“This is another incredible asset to our vaccination programme - the biggest and most successful in our history.”
People who have been inoculated may gain an edge in finding a potential match
Third wave emerging in the UK, expert says
Current coronavirus figures are “evidence of another wave appearing”, an expert has said.
Sir David King, former chief scientific adviser to the Government and chair of the Independent Sage Group, said: “(There are) 5,300 new cases of the disease per day in the United Kingdom and we’re up about 2,000 on last week.
“Now we’ve been discussing whether or not we’re going into a serious third wave and I don’t think we can possibly wait any longer. This is the evidence of another wave appearing.”
Speaking to Sky News, he added that one in 25 new Covid-19 cases are people who have had two jabs - amounting to around 400 new cases a day.
Reacting to the figures, he said: “I’m very reluctant to say that we should not go out of lockdown on June 21, but I think the figures are in now, and it will be wise for the government to announce right away a delay in opening, just so that we can all plan for the post June 21 period.
“I would give a few weeks’ delay and see how the figures are emerging.”
NHS workers haven’t been ‘properly compensated’ during pandemic, ex-PM says
Former prime minister Gordon Brown has said that NHS workers haven’t been properly compensated for their work during the pandemic.
His comments came as he told ITV’s Good Morning Britain that it should be possible to vaccinate British children while still supporting the global vaccine drive.
“If children need to be vaccinated and that’s the medical advice, we must do it ... and of course we’ve got to fund the NHS properly”, he said.
“I feel very sad that the nurses and the health workers have not been properly compensated for the work they did over the last year, but we can do both and it’s in our interest to do both.”
Mr Brown added that failing to support vaccination around the globe would “come back to haunt” the UK, but that there should be enough money to vaccinate everyone, including children, in the nation.
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