Professor Linda Bauld mentioned the Omicron sub-lineages BA.4 and BA.5. are a part of the explanation for the rise in instances and a “small however not vital” rise within the variety of individuals in hospital.
Nevertheless, she mentioned that vaccines are working properly within the overwhelming majority of individuals and are making a distinction between the chance from an infection and the chance of extreme illness.
Newest knowledge from the Workplace for Nationwide Statistics (ONS) confirmed that round one in 40 individuals in Scotland had Covid-19 within the week ending June 2, up from one in 50 the earlier week.
Professor Bauld, a professor of Public Well being on the College of Edinburgh, advised BBC Radio Scotland’s Good Morning Scotland programme: “I believe it’s fairly clear to me from among the knowledge we’ve seen that we’re actually in one other wave of an infection, if not already it will likely be quickly and that actually appears to be the case in quite a few nations, and that’s not an enormous shock as a result of we did anticipate we might have a rising degree of infections each three or 4 months probably, that’s what worldwide colleagues have mentioned.
“It is perhaps stunning to individuals although as a result of it’s the summer season, and so they’re used to listening to from us (that) the climate is best so persons are extra outdoors and due to this fact we cut back the dangers by our behaviour.
Covid Scotland: Coronavirus deaths virtually double in every week, figures present
“That’s true, however what we’ve received is Omicron and a special sort of it, BA.4 and 5 – there’s these Omicron sub-lineages which appear to be rising in quantity within the UK and I believe that’s a part of the reason why we’re starting to see extra instances, and we’ve seen a small however not vital rise within the variety of individuals in hospital as properly.”
Professor Bauld mentioned that vaccines supply good safety towards extreme illness, however she thinks it probably that the supply of a booster jab could also be prolonged to a wider vary of teams within the autumn, past what the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has advisable.
The JCVI is recommending care house residents and workers, frontline care staff, these aged 65 and over and adults aged between 16 and 64 who’re clinically susceptible needs to be given one other dose of Covid-19 vaccine within the autumn.
Professor Bauld mentioned: “Your safety doesn’t fall off a cliff, it wanes step by step. Your safety towards getting contaminated really wanes fairly shortly and the vaccines usually are not sterilising so they don’t seem to be defending us towards the chance of an infection.
“Your danger of extreme illness… I believe even past months after your dose, you is probably not having such a strong antibody response however different bits of the immune system, B and T cells, are nonetheless working towards getting very unwell.
“In older teams whose immunity doesn’t final as lengthy the waning seems faster. Will we’ve extra individuals vaccinated within the autumn? Sure, for the over 65s and immuno-supressed, that’s what JCVI says. Whether or not they’ll lengthen it to these of us in our 50s and different teams is one thing they’re reviewing.
“In case you had been to ask me what I believe, I believe it’s probably they’ll change that eligibility, however we’ll wait to listen to.
“We have to give individuals as a lot safety as we are able to and we’re, like influenza, going to have I believe common vaccinations sooner or later for Covid-19, not for everybody however for a lot of teams.”