THE largest amount of imported coronavirus cases in the UK during the month of March came from Spain, it has been announced.
According to a study by the COVID-19 Genomics UK consortium (Cog-UK), the idea of a single ‘patient zero’ that started the UK outbreak has been disproved.
They found that the UK’s coronavirus epidemic did not have one origin, but at least 1,356 origins.
The study showed that less than 0.1% of those imported cases came directly from China.
Instead the UK’s coronavirus epidemic was largely initiated by travel from Italy in late February, Spain in early to mid March and then France in mid to late March.
Spain tops the list, responsible for 33.6% of imported coronavirus cases into the UK.
The study also estimates that approximately 80% of those initial cases happened in March, while the UK government was debating whether to lockdown or not.
The imported cases started off a chain where the virus was passed from one person onto the next and so on.
The study also suggests that Atletico Madrid’s match against Liverpool on March 11 had a surprisingly small effect.
An estimated 3,000 people flew in to watch the game, but there were 20,000 people flying in from Spain every single day in mid March.
“It shows that individual events such as football matches likely made a negligible contribution to the number of imports at that time.”