Boris Johnson has been warned by the increasing number of coronavirus cases by former Chief Scientific Adviser and Independent SAGE chair Sir David King. The reproduction number (R value) of coronavirus in the UK has risen to between 0.9-1.1, figures from the Government Office for Science and the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) show. The latest growth rate for the whole of the UK is between minus three percent to plus one percent, a slight change from between minus four percent to minus one percent last week.
Speaking to LBC, Sir David said: “Overall we’ve risen from a number of around 4,000 to 6,600 and I would say time to push the panic button.
“The month of August, a summer month, is a time where we should have got COVID-19 down to close to zero.
“We should have put the flames out instead of letting the embers continue far too early we lifted some of the lockdown measures, in particular having pubs able to serve people indoors.
“A little more patience on that, even from mid-July onwards, and we would have been close to zero now.”
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The growth rate of coronavirus transmission reflects how quickly the number of infections is changing day by day.
The numbers suggest there is a risk that the overall coronavirus epidemic in the UK is growing, Government scientists say.
It comes as holidaymakers returning to face quarantine in the UK could be coming home to towns or cities with higher coronavirus rates than the sun-soaked places they have left.
The Government’s threshold for considering quarantine measures is when a country records a seven-day rate of more than 20 cases per 100,000 people.
Meanwhile, according to the Croatian Government, the rate of confirmed cases in Dubrovnik was 16.5 per 100,000 – well below the country’s overall rate as indicated by the UK’s Department for Transport this week of 27.4 per 100,000.
The country’s rate had risen to 31.4 by Friday.
In the seven days to August 17, the rate of confirmed cases in Zagreb was 37.9 per 100,000.
Croatia’s ambassador to the UK said he regretted that the Government here had not taken a regional approach, instead of enforcing a quarantine for people returning from any part of the country.