Covid live: Delta variant will dominate globally in months – WHO; Rome cases surge linked to Euro 2020 celebrations






















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Business leaders, health experts and trade associations representing tens of thousands of businesses have hit out at the UK government’s handling of the “pingdemic” self-isolation crisis.

Amid mounting concern that staff absences are stifling economic recovery, Princess Yachts and luxury carmaker Bentley added their names to a growing list of firms with a significant number of workers absent.

And a day after leading business lobby group the Institute of Directors criticised “poor communication and mixed messages” from the government, a host of trade associations followed suit.

Leading figures in farming, accounting, boating, paper and printing, and engineering said they were dismayed by the government’s apparent confusion over whether staff who are pinged by NHS test and trace need to isolate.

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Fivefold increase in Rome cases linked to Euro 2020 celebrations

Coronavirus infections in Rome have increased fivefold over the past nine days, a boom believed to have been triggered by the European football championship celebrations.

The Italian capital registered 557 new cases on Tuesday, compared to 122 on 11 July, the day Italy beat England in the Euros 2020 final.

Across Lazio, the region surrounding Rome, there were 681 new infections – the highest among Italy’s 20 regions.

“We’re paying for the effects of the football,” said Alessio D’Amato, the health councillor for Lazio, adding that the situation in hospitals was so far under control. He expects cases to rise further over the next few days as a result of the football victory celebrations, with mostly “young and unvaccinated” people being affected.

Infections across Italy have jumped over the past week, mostly driven by the Delta variant. As of Tuesday, the seven-day average was 19,384 infections, compared to 9,007 the week before.

Ten more Covid-related fatalities were confirmed on Tuesday, bringing the total death toll to 127,884 – the highest in Europe after Britain.

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