Omicron: Lewisham and Newham revealed to be London’s new variant hotspots


ewisham and Newham have been identified as Omicron hotspots as the 2.3m Londoners yet to receive a booster were urged to take up the offer of a third jab.

It came as the capital’s top councillor advised Londoners to test themselves after travelling on the Tube.

The UK Health Security Agency reported on Wednesday night that the “majority” of the 705 suspected cases of the more active variant were in London and the South East, including more than 200 in the capital.

In the seven days to Sunday, December 5, it said there were five cases confirmed in each of Croydon, Hackney, Lambeth, Newham and Greenwich, plus three cases in Lewisham and two in Wandsworth and Brent.

But in addition, genomic testing had discovered cases where there had been a “S gene drop-out” in the virus – a proxy for likely Omicron.

There were 18 such cases in Lewisham in the last week, 14 in Newham, nine in Greenwich, eight in Lambeth, seven in Brent, six in Hackney and Wandsworth and two in Croydon.

A total of 38,831 Londoners received a booster on Tuesday, up 3,000 on Monday – taking the total number of boosters delivered in the capital to 2,085,645.

London has delivered fewer booster than any other English region other than the South West, despite take-up rates being generally better than for first and second jabs.


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