UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock has announced that surge testing was underway in parts of England after six cases of the coronavirus variant first found in Brazil were detected.
“We’re putting in place surge testing in South Gloucestershire as a precaution. And I urge everyone to remain vigilant,” Hancock said at a virtual press briefing in Downing Street late Monday.
Hancock said the six cases comprised three in Scotland and three in England.
Five of them have been identified while officials are still seeking a missing person in England who has been infected with this variant of concern but did not complete the registration form properly.
“We know that five of these people quarantined at home as they were legally required to do. We’ve been in contact with them and their families and we’re grateful to them for understanding the seriousness of the situation.
“One of the six completed a test but did not successfully complete contact details,” he added.
Hancock said even though data showed the number of new cases is falling, but the rate of decline has slowed.
He urged the public to stick to the rules.
“This shows how we all need to keep sticking to the rules. Let’s not blow it now,” he said.
The UK’s overall coronavirus caseload and death toll stood at 4,194,289 and 123,187, respectively.
So fra, more than 20.2 million people in Britain have been administered the first jab of the coronavirus vaccine.
England is currently under the third national lockdown since outbreak of the pandemic in the country. Similar restriction measures are also in place in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.