Virus a ‘constant presence’ that is ‘returning all the time’

The World Health Organization’s special envoy on Covid-19, David Nabarro, says the virus is “capable of surging back really quickly” and stressed the importance of being able to trace, test and isolate people.

“If we can do that, and do it well, then the surges are kept really small, they’re dealt with quickly and life can go on,” he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.

“If, on the other hand, this testing and tracing and isolation just is not done properly, then you get very bad surges occurring and this will lead to economic challenges.”

His comments come scientists warned the current testing and contact tracing is inadequate to prevent a second wave of coronavirus after schools in the UK reopen.

Dr Nabarro told the BBC that the virus is a “constant presence” that is “returning all the time”, saying he tends to refer to it as “constant spikes and occasional surges” rather than a second wave.

He added that society will have to adjust to the new “reality of living with this virus”, which could see businesses and schools temporarily to deal with local outbreaks.

COVID-19 Foreigns attempts to escape

Meanwhile, two foreign nationals have attempted to escape from a South Korean quarantine facility in the space of two weeks according to police.

One Vietnamese national escaped from a hotel in Incheon on Monday and was detained in Seoul eight hours later. He was accused of leaving the facility without permission by descending from a fifth-floor window.

An American man was detained by police on 21 July after escaping from the same hotel. He is due to be deported, according to Yonhap news agency.

Police in Incheon say they have increased the number of officers patrolling the hotel.

All people arriving in South Korea from overseas – including Koreans -must spend 14 days in government quarantine centres.

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