Covid ‘too dangerous’ to be treated like flu as scientists warns ‘normal lives’ will lead to ‘more dead people’

TOP health experts say there will be “a lot more dead people” if countries continue to ease Covid restrictions.

Epidemiologists are worried that plans to downgrade Covid to a “seasonal flu” will lead to a new wave of deaths.

Top scientists warn easing Covid restrictions will lead to 'a lot more dead people'


Top scientists warn easing Covid restrictions will lead to ‘a lot more dead people’Credit: Reuters
Aussie epidemiologists say it's too early to go back to 'normal life'


Aussie epidemiologists say it’s too early to go back to ‘normal life’

The warning comes as Aussie Prime Minister Scott Morrison claimed Covid will be treated “like the flu” once vaccination rates in the country hit 80 per cent.

“We get this done, Australia, and you can see what’s on the other side,” he said introducing the country’s roadmap out of lockdown.

“When it is like the flu, we should treat it like the flu and that means no lockdowns”.

Under the four-stage plan, Aussies can expect lockdowns to be a thing of the past and boarders to open up 2022.

The Pacific nation currently has once of the strictest quarantine regimes around, requiring arrivals to self-isolate in a hotel for two weeks and prohibiting Aussies from leaving the country without permission.

But senior health officials warn the proposals will lead to “a lot more dead people”.

“We could live just our normal lives, but I just think we’d have a lot more dead people,” said professor Nancy Baxter from the University of Melbourne’s global health department.

Diseases expert Suman Majumdar said it would be a mistake to “just let the virus go”.

He said: “Rather than the flu, I would say measles might be more similar, because measles is catastrophic if it is rampant in an unvaccinated population.”

See also  Grace Millane: police search for British backpacker missing in New Zealand

In a stark warning to fellow citizens, Majumdar said mask-wearing will be in place for “some period of time”, especially in high-risk places like buses, trains and cramped indoor environments.

The comes as Prime Minister Boris Johnson tells Brits to learn learn to live with covid as a simple fact of life.

The Prime Minister is expected to say that from July 19, covid face mask rules will be scrapped, with the UK switching to a voluntary system, and urge workers to return to the office.

Canberra’s announcement comes as the Delta variant rips through Sydney, forcing the city into a snap two-week lockdown.

New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian said: “What we are really looking at are the number of people who have still been infectious in the community and what impact that will have in the next few days.”

So far, at least 300 people have been infected since the first case was reported on June 16.

Aussie Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced the nation's roadmap out of lockdown


Aussie Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced the nation’s roadmap out of lockdownCredit: EPA
The nation's Chief Medical Officer Paul Kelly


The nation’s Chief Medical Officer Paul KellyCredit: EPA

“The next couple of days will be absolutely critical,” Berejiklian said.

This year, Australia recorded just over 2000 cases of COVID-19, with one death from a person who had returned from overseas. 

Health authorities around the world are on high alert after the World Health Organisation warned the new “Lambda” variant could be more infectious than current strains.

The WHO classified Lambda as a global Variant of Interest on 14 June.

Mutations in the strain increase transmissibility and potentially dodge vaccines, it warned before adding there was not enough evidence to know for certain.

See also  Google worker, 33, has been in hospital for months after broken arm turned out to be lymphoma

“So far we have seen no indication that the Lambda variant is more aggressive,” the WHO virologist Jairo Mendez-Rico told German news outlet DW.

“It’s possible that it has a higher rate of contagion but more work needs to be done on it.”

He added: “It is likely that SARS-CoV-2 will become more transmissible throughout the course of its evolution but not necessarily more damaging to the host.”

This comes as Chilean researchers found the variant could be resistant to Covid vaccines.

Experts at the University of Chile who studied the virus in local healthcare workers who received two doses of China’s CoronaVac jab say Lambda is more infectious than the Brazilian and UK mutations.

“Our data show for the first time that mutations present in the spike protein of the Lambda variant confer escape to neutralising antibodies and increased infectivity,” they wrote in a paper yet to be peer reviewed.

“It is possible that it may exhibit higher infection rates, but we don’t yet have enough reliable data to compare it to gamma or delta.” 

Also known as C.37, the Lambda strain was first detected in Peru last year before quickly spreading to 30 countries, including Britain.

Of particular concern to virologists is the L452Q spike protein because of its potential to infect human cells like the L452R mutation in the highly infectious Delta variant.

Peruvian scientists noticed the variant in December when it accounted for “just one in every 200 samples”.

By March, that jumped to 50 per cent of cases. Now that figure is a whopping 82 per cent, according to the WHO.

See also  Life on the breadline: 'Am I wearing out my welcome?' is a lingering question | David Samuel
A patient sits on the bed at the Covid-19 ward at the Honorio Delgado Hospital in Arequipa, Peru


A patient sits on the bed at the Covid-19 ward at the Honorio Delgado Hospital in Arequipa, PeruCredit: AFP
Scientists fear the Lambda variant could be resistant to vaccines


Scientists fear the Lambda variant could be resistant to vaccinesCredit: AP
Peru has the worst per-capita Covid death rate in the world


Peru has the worst per-capita Covid death rate in the world

It is contributing to some 500 deaths per 100,000 people – almost double that of second-placed Hungary, which is seeing 300 per 100,000 people die from the virus, according to Johns Hopkins data.

Health officials in the country tripled the official Covid death toll to 180,764, up from 69,342 after a government review found cases were not being properly recorded.

Peru has been one of the hardest hit countries in Latin America, with hospitals overrun and with demand for oxygen sending supplies plummeting.

Brits will treat Covid like flu with lockdowns unlikely to be needed again, Chris Whitty says


Leave a Reply

This website uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you accept our use of cookies.  Learn more