Nando’s-style Covid alert levels have been snubbed – just as cases are starting to rise again.
It marks the government’s latest step back to before the pandemic, now that mass testing and daily numbers are over. Even the hated NHS Covid app – responsible for the ‘pandemic’ – will be scrapped next month.
A sliding gradient system indicated a virus threat level from one to five, using a spectrum of colors from green to red.
It shares a striking resemblance to the fast food chain’s famous Peri-peri meter and is often quoted in grim No. 10 press conferences to make the threat clear to the public.
Officials said it was no longer necessary to keep the alert system in place because the majority of the population is now not at risk of serious illness from Covid.
The historic British vaccination plan, along with repeated waves, created a wall of immunity that greatly reduced the threat of the virus, turning it into something akin to the seasonal flu.
Nando’s-style Covid alert levels have been blown off, just as cases are beginning to rise again
ONS analysts estimate that nearly 1.7 million Britons were carrying the virus on any given day in the week ending 13 March. This is a jump of nearly 14 percent from the previous week.
The program, which has been downloaded more than 31 million times, was responsible for the hated “epidemic”. Britons have been encouraged to enter their positive test results into the app so that it can send alerts to anyone who may have been close to them recently, informing them that they have been infected and should be isolated.
Alert metrics have served as a key tool in informing the public of virus threat levels.
His retirement comes days after officials announced the closure of the NHS Covid app next month.
The program, which has been downloaded more than 31 million times in England and Wales, was responsible for the hated “epidemic”.
The app asked people to self-isolate for up to 10 days if they were in close contact — within two meters for more than 15 minutes — with an infected person.
While Britons were not legally required to do so, hundreds of thousands a week were told to self-isolate at the height of the ‘pandemic outbreak’ in the summer of 2021.
In addition, Britain’s long-term Covid survey was also excluded.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) Covid Infection Survey released its latest regular report last week – just three years since its launch in April 2020.
But the end of the survey, along with alerts and the NHS app, comes as infections from the virus in England rise to their highest level so far in 2023.
The Bureau of National Statistics’ swansong report warned that one in 40 people has contracted the virus across the country, rising to one in 17 in some areas.
Its final report estimated that nearly 1.7 million Britons had the virus on any given day in the week ending 13 March. This was a jump of nearly 14 percent from the previous week.
Leading experts fear that outbreaks will continue in the coming weeks as part of the natural cycle of the virus.
Some have already called for the return of face masks.
Government scientists decided to do away with the sliding scale system, which indicates the virus threat level
The North West has the highest prevalence of Covid in England with an estimated 4.14 per cent of people infected. This amounts to around one in 25, although the Office for National Statistics said it could be as high as one in 17. This was followed by the East Midlands at 3.36 per cent.
Analysts for the Office for National Statistics (ONS) estimate that approximately 1.73 million Britons were carrying the virus on any given day in the week ending 13 March. This is a jump of nearly 14 per cent on the previous week, when it was estimated that nearly 1.52 million Britons were infected.
Even GP surgeries in parts of the country have started canceling appointments because the uptick has left them with “exceptionally low” staffing levels.
Michelle Bowen, head of health monitoring publication at the Office for National Statistics, said: ‘This week’s data shows that infections are increasing in England.
However, the trend is uncertain in the rest of the UK.
In England, positivity has increased in children and those aged 50 and over. The North West, East Midlands and South East England have seen an increase in infections, although the trend is uncertain across all other regions.
In recent months, an ONS survey has helped track the scope and progress of the 2022 Christmas wave, which peaked at nearly three million infections, as well as the latest spike in the spread of the virus.
In the absence of official estimates of Covid levels, hospitalization data recorded by the NHS will be one of the few remaining sources of data to give any sense of spread, along with death records.
The UK’s Health Security Agency said the alert level system could be reintroduced if needed.
Stephen Riley, director general of data, analytics and surveillance at the UKHSA, said the body would continue to track the virus.
“If the immediate danger posed by the virus increases significantly, we will advise chief medical officers and ministers about alert systems,” he told i news.