COVID-19: Mayor Khan admits he is now ‘incredibly concerned’ about the number of Londoners with Omicron | UK News

London’s mayor has stated he is “extremely involved” about the improve of Omicron circumstances in the capital.

Talking to reporters from Stamford Bridge, Sadiq Khan additionally stated Omicron is now the “dominant variant” in the metropolis.

He added that he was “extremely anxious” about workers absences in the NHS, hearth service and the police pressure attributable to the number of COVID-19 circumstances.

“The massive difficulty now we have is the number of Londoners who’ve this virus and this is resulting in large points in relation to workers absences and the potential of our public companies to run at the optimum ranges,” he stated.

His remarks come as the newest figures present the number of COVID sufferers in hospital throughout London has climbed to 1,534 – a 28.6% improve on final week.

The federal government’s COVID dashboard confirmed that 341 extra individuals with the virus had been in hospital in the capital on 17 December – up from 1,193 on 10 December.

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Throughout the UK, 7,611 individuals are in hospital with the virus, an increase of 163 sufferers (2%) on the earlier week.

Mr Khan stated: “Now we’re the area with the largest number of (COVID) circumstances. Omicron is now the dominant variant and over the final 24 hours now we have had 27,000 new circumstances of COVID and over the final week that determine is 70,000.

“I am extremely involved about the number of Londoners with this variant but in addition the influence on our hospitals. Hospital admissions are now going up as properly.”

He additionally known as on the authorities to offer monetary assist for companies impacted by the unfold of COVID-19 to keep away from individuals shedding their jobs or firms going bust.

He stated the influence of COVID over the previous few weeks on companies has been “devastating” with theatres, stay music occasions, and eating places hit by a rise in cancellations.

“It is essential, the authorities has acquired to offer a monetary bundle of measures, grants, 100% enterprise charges reduction and extra information in relation to furlough,” Mr Khan stated.

“If the authorities does not, you will see many many companies going bust and tens of 1000’s of individuals shedding their jobs.”

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Mr Khan went on to induce these individuals, who’re eligible, to get a booster jab and for others to verify they’re vaccinated.

“It is nonetheless the case that in some pockets of London there are black Londoners, there are Muslim Londoners, there are Jewish Londoners, there are Japanese European Londoners, who nonetheless have not had a vaccine,” he added.

“So reaching out to these communities… to clarify why the vaccine is vital and to verify no person is left behind, we’re ensuring extra Londoners get the first dose.”

Regardless of this, he stated greater than 15.4 million vaccines have been given out in the metropolis, with 87% of over 16s receiving one dose and 94% of these aged over 40 being double jabbed.

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It comes as virtually 3,000 websites, together with racecourses, soccer stadiums and Christmas markets, have been changed into vaccination centres this weekend.

Employees will likely be vaccinating at about 2,900 locations on Saturday and Sunday, stated NHS England.

This consists of soccer grounds Anfield, Stamford Bridge and Wembley and three racecourses, Sandown Park, Bathtub and Chelmsford.

Different venues open this weekend embody the Christmas Market at Chester Cathedral, the Liverpool Christmas Ice Pageant, Bluewater buying centre in Kent and London’s Oxford Avenue the place there will likely be a vaccine bus.

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