Coronavirus restrictions have been reintroduced in parts of the UK as fears spread over the Pirola variant – which has hit some regions harder than others.
Positive cases are doubling almost every few days with experts fearing the variant could soon become the dominant strain. Pirola is hard to study properly thanks to its 30 different variations and the World Health Organisation has even placed the disease on its watch list.
In 2020 and 2021 the UK saw positive test numbers soar in the winter, and with colder months ahead, a huge surge in BA.2.86 cases is thought to be on the horizon. The Daily Star previously reported restrictions had been brought back in certain settings in some parts of the UK as a result of the variant.
READ MORE: Covid restrictions return to UK as multi-mutated Pirola strain takes over country
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According to government figures, the current Covid hotspot in England and Wales is Great Yarmouth, Norfolk. There were 54.4 new cases there for every 100,000 people in the week leading up to October 14, reports The Express.
Chesterfield in Derbyshire had the next-highest rate at 49.6 per 100,000 people, followed by Scarborough with (45.1), the Isle of Wight (44.3), Fylde (43.1), Torbay (41.8), and Newcastle-under-Lyme (41.7).
The news comes after parts of the country announced mask-wearing restrictions would be reintroduced in certain settings. Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust have become the first in the country to bring back rules around covering your mouth and nose for the first time in nearly two years.
Mask-wearing is now mandatory for visitors and patients in all medical settings run by the trust, with everyone also asked to sanitise and socially distance. A spokesman for the trust said: "Along with our staff, visitors, outpatients and anyone accompanying them are asked to wear masks in all clinical areas and anywhere they will be in close contact with others for longer periods of time.
"Please ask a member of staff if you do not have a mask and they will provide you with one."
As of September 18, 10 Pirola cases in England had led to the patient being hospitalised, but at that time there had been no recorded deaths from the variant.
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