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The best of times, the worst of times… That’s science in the age of Covid | Francois Balloux

The pandemic death toll has just passed 200,000 in the UK. Scientists reach for answers but it’s a messy, slow process

The pace of the news cycle around the Covid-19 pandemic is relentless. Just last week, the UK announced that the grim landmark of 200,000 deaths involving the virus had been reached. And as the current wave of infections, largely fuelled by the Omicron BA.5 variant, starts to recede, fears have been building up that a worse Sars-CoV-2 variant may be on the horizon, in the shape of BA.2.75.

There is probably no precedent for a scientific topic having captured the public’s imagination to such an extent – and for so long. In fact, a sizeable proportion of all news articles published over the past two years have been dedicated to the pandemic. It’s also one of the most widely discussed topics on social media, with people from all walks of life taking part in heated, if not at times toxic and confused, debates about the exact meaning of the latest scientific publication.

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Read the original article at The Guardian

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