UK regulators approve Moderna vaccine, Mayor of London declares major incident
Topics: MODERNA LONDON UK
The vaccine, a product of the US-based Moderna, is the third jab approved in the UK after it received the green light from the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency.
The vaccine provides 94% protection from COVID-19, according to trial runs.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has today declared a ‘major incident’ due to the rapid spread of the coronavirus across the capital and the increase of Covid-19 cases in hospitals, which has left the NHS at risk of being overwhelmed.
The Mayor took the decision as the formal Chair of the London Resilience Forum following discussions with leaders from NHS London, local authorities, Public Health England and the emergency services in the capital.
It comes as the number of Covid-19 cases in London has exceeded 1,000 per 100,000, putting immense pressure on an already stretched NHS.
Between 30 December and 6 January, the number of patients in London hospitals grew by 27 per cent (from 5,524 to 7,034) and the number on mechanical ventilation grew by 42 per cent (from 640 to 908).
Over the last three days alone the NHS has announced 477 deaths in London hospitals following a positive test for Covid-19.
The 7,034 people currently in hospital with Covid-19 represents a 35 per cent increase compared to the peak of the pandemic in April.
There are currently around 830 admissions to London hospital trusts per day which could rise further over the next two weeks.
The impact is also being felt right across the emergency services with hundreds of firefighters from London Fire Brigade once again assisting London Ambulance Service by volunteering to drive ambulances as the ambulance services faces one of the busiest times in its history.
Since volunteering to help in April last year, firefighters have now responded to 100,000 incidents whilst driving ambulances.
The London Ambulance Service is now taking up to 8,000 emergency calls a day now, compared to 5,500 on a typical busy day. ■