Science - USA (2021-07-16)

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260 16 JULY 2021 • VOL 373 ISSUE 6552 SCIENCE



he United Kingdom is going ahead with plans
to lift virtually all coronavirus restrictions on
19 July, despite a plea from health researchers to
hit the pause button, as the government did in
June. The highly transmissible Delta variant of
SARS-CoV-2 caused U.K. cases to climb to more
than 30,000 daily last week; fully reopening would accel-
erate that surge, especially among children, and consti-
tute a “dangerous and unethical experiment,” more than
1 0 0 e x p e r t s w a r n e d i n a 7 J u l y l e t t e r i n The Lancet. Despite

vowing on 12 July to proceed, U.K. Prime Minister Boris
Johnson urged caution and recommended continued
use of face masks in crowded indoor spaces. The same
day, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte apologized for
dropping most public restrictions on 26 June, a move
that triggered a new outbreak in the Netherlands and
led the government last week to reimpose controls on
bars, restaurants, clubs, and festivals until 14 August.
Daily case numbers in the country increased more than
10-fold in the first 2 weeks after the reopening.



Pandemic prevention fund sought
PUBLIC HEALTH | To prevent future pan-
demics, the wealthy countries of the world
should provide donations to kick-start a
new, global finance mechanism that would
raise a total of $75 billion in new funding
over the next 5 years, an independent panel
of economists and health scientists wrote
in a report last week. The panel—convened
by the G-20 nations, which have most of the

largest economies—adds that the annual
expenditure would be only 1/700th of the
$10 trillion the International Monetary
Fund estimates the COVID-19 pandemic cost
government budgets. Its report, A Global
Deal for Our Pandemic Age, also calls for
establishing an independent board to over-
see the spending, which would go toward
improving surveillance of infectious dis-
eases, research, and purchasing treatments
and vaccines. “Together with climate change,

countering the existential threat of deadly
and costly pandemics must be the human
security issue of our times,” the report states.
“Scaling up pandemic preparedness cannot
wait until COVID-19 is over.”

Alzheimer’s drug label narrowed
DRUG DEVELOPMENT| Facing criticism for
its recent approval of an Alzheimer’s disease
treatment rejected by its own advisers,

Edited byJeffrey Brainard

We should not expect heat waves to behave as they have ...

in terms of what we need to prepare for.

Friederike Otto of World Weather Attribution, which estimated that climate change made recent
record heat in the Pacific Northwest 150 times more likely. (The Guardian)


U.K. stays course on reopening, despite criticism from scientists

Fans of England celebrate during this week’s UEFA Euro 2020 Championship final, as critics called such crowded events fertile ground for COVID-19 infections.

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