Sage expert warns of ‘acute Covid injuries’ in young people

Professor Semple said people being hospitalised are ‘nearly all unvaccinated’

Joe Middleton
Tuesday 13 July 2021 20:13 BST
Related video: UK Covid-19 vaccinations latest figures

A Sage expert has warned that young people are suffering from “acute Covid injuries” including damage to their lungs and kidneys.

Professor Calum Semple, a specialist in child health and outbreak medicine at the University of Liverpool, said that the people going into hospital are “nearly all unvaccinated.”

He added his concern was that people who were otherwise healthy are now dealing with damage to their vital organs due to Covid.

It comes just days after Boris Johnson told the nation that nearly all coronavirus restrictions would be dropped for the so-called Freedom Day on 19 July.

Speaking about people currently being hospitalised with coronavirus, Professor Semple told BBC Breakfast: “They’re nearly all unvaccinated, and what’s surprising is that although they’re not dying, they are suffering quite a lot of injuries, so we’re seeing a lot of kidney injuries and lung injuries in these younger people.”

He added: “My concern now is not so much about death, although every death is a tragedy, my concern now is about otherwise healthy people that would normally be economically important and working and going about their daily lives, they’re going to get damaged, they’re going to get lung scarring and kidney disease ... this is actually different to long Covid, this is acute Covid injury.”

Professor Semple also said that the language used by the government in recent days suggested that winter Covid restrictions could not be ruled out.

He said: “The language was subtly different – rather than being totally reversible, there was a few caveats being thrown in there, suggesting that come winter time some measures may have to come back.”

Professor Semple added that if people proceed cautiously “we probably won’t see” some of the numbers suggested in “reasonable worst case scenarios”, such as 200 deaths per day or 100,000 cases per day.

One of the major changes to restrictions on 19 July will be that wearing a face mask will no longer be required by law. Professor Semple said he would continue to wear a face mask “particularly in enclosed areas”.

Additional reporting by PA

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