Is the new Covid strain only in the UK? Do any other countries have the Covid variant?

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More evidence is needed before we know whether the new variant is more deadly than the original coronavirus, but there’s certainly reason to be concerned, according to the University of Leeds’s Dr Stephen Griffin.

“The new SARS2 variant may well be cause for significant concern, and all the more reason to be vigilant,” he said.

“However, that it has taken an event of this nature to provoke a reaction from the government says more about the current scenario in the UK and the long term view of how this came to be, rather than the naturally upsetting and disappointing false promises over Christmas that have now been revoked.

“It is clear that failure to make good on the sacrifices made during the first lockdown, suppress infection rates over summer, and replace the failed corporate TTI system has led directly to the resurgence seen since September, the need for a second (and likely a third) lockdown, and ultimately an environment in which SARS-COV-2 is able to thrive and evolve.”

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