By Amit Roy
WHAT is not clear to me is how so many people are catching the new mutant strain of the coronavirus.
The government has urged the public to wear masks, wash hands as frequently as possible, maintain social distance, and avoid crowded places.
And more recently, the guidance has included telling people to let fresh air into their homes, so any virus particles can be blown away. But I imagine most people were doing all this, anyway, so how have so many caught the new mutant strain?
Is it safe to pop into supermarkets? For that matter, is it safe to go for a walk? Can we breathe the air outside?
In recent days, more than 50,000 people a day are getting infected, and the daily death toll is close to 1,000. It is important not to panic, but the government should provide further detailed guidelines on what not to do.
The Oxford vaccine, seen as a game changer, cannot be rolled out fast enough.
Meanwhile, the British media has seized on the fact that the research team behind the Oxford vaccine is dominated by women.
The Daily Mail’s take was, “All hail the wonder women who’ve put us on top of the world! Brilliant, dedicated, courageous… inspirational story of the team behind the Oxford vaccine.”
Even the Sun acknowledged that “many are brilliant women who are as vital to our futures as the frontline NHS doctors and nurses”.
One of the team members, Maheshi Ramasamy, who has been the lead in the adult clinical trials of the vaccine, is currently an infectious consultant physician at the Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
Maheshi, who also acts as the lead tutor for graduate medical students at Magdalen College, was asked by a BBC presenter: “My God, science is cool now?”
The 43-year-old, who was born in Sri Lanka and is herself the daughter of two scientists, gave what I thought was an excellent answer. She laughed and said: “I have always thought science is cool.”
We shouldn’t be surprised if girls across the world are inspired enough to take up science as a career.