The mutated coronavirus strain could cause a higher mortality rate than the original variant in 2021.This conclusion was reached by researchers from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.
Researchers said the increase in transmissibility of the new Covid-19 could see more people being hospitalised and eventually dying after contracting the virus.
A report - which is still preliminary and has not been peer reviewed yet - has shown that, unless more restrictions are in place, up to 118,000 people could die of Covid-19 by the summer in a worst case scenario.
But a more likely scenario, with 200,000 being vaccinated every week, would see 83,300 people dying by the end of June.
Scientists have said that the current average of 200,000 jabs being administered every week "does not have much impact".
As we reported earlier, a highly contagious Covid-19 mutation, originally identified in the UK, has also been reported in Germany and Switzerland.
In Germany, a new virus strain was discovered in the federal state of Baden-Wuerttemberg. The British mutation is also circulating in Switzerland. It is noted that people infected with the new variant of the coronavirus live in the UK however they tested positive for the virus in Switzerland.