As the coronavirus pandemic surges this winter, thousands of cases might go undetected and be left out in official figures.
A pandemic expert has warned that almost 50 per cent of Covid-19 cases across the UK are not being detected. Mark Woodhouse, who`s part of the Government’s scientific advisory group Sage, said “a very high proportion” of infected people are not being identified “partly because many of them are asymptomatic or so mildly infected they don’t recognise the symptoms”.
In a statement, Prof Woolhouse said: “The problem that testing pilot scheme in Liverpool is trying to solve is that we’re still not finding about half of the Covid cases in Scotland or in the UK more generally. That’s a very high proportion.”
Police forces across England are expected to get tougher on lockdown flouters as coronavirus cases are soaring.
The 17-day firebreak lockdown in Wales comes to an end today. First Minister Mark Drakeford has urged Boris Johnson devise a similar strategy to Christmas for all four British nations.
According to the new discovery, many people are asymptomatic while others are having symptoms and deliberately ignoring them to avoid going into quarantine.
More techniques should be devised to identify these cases and contacts traced to curb the spread of the virus.
Mark Woolhouse, professor of infectious disease epidemiology at the University of Edinburgh, said: “We can’t do it effectively if those cases are not also being self-isolated and their contacts traced. It’s going to make it much more difficult.”