THE UK should be moving immediately to Plan B, an expert has warned today.
Professor Tim Spector said he would urge ministers to get on top of the fight against Covid.
The lead scientist behind the ZOE Covid Study App said he wouldn’t bother with Plan A – which the Prime Minister is hoping will see Britain through the winter.
He stated that if he was in charge, which he is not, he would tell the Government to “go straight to plan B”.
Don’t wait for the NHS to crumble and for its staff who have suffered for so many years to experience more traumas.
“And other countries have shown we can clearly get these numbers down now if we want to.”
Plan B would include masks being reinstated, homework returning and vaccination passports being brought in.
The UK is currently in a strong position against the virus, with the number of deaths being relatively low and vaccines that work, despite the high incidence of cases.
However, the UK has made masks optional and scrapped social distancing – something Prof Spector warned against.
He stated that he was concerned about more people staying indoors. I urge everyone to wear masks and keep their distance before attending big events.
“Of course if you’ve got one of the top five symptoms, you’ve suddenly developed a weird cold/headache, just stay at home.
“Don’t be selfish and risk infecting other people.”
The graph shows the locations of Covid cases in the UK. It was also drawn by his colleagues.
The NHS hospitals suffering worst at the moment are in Scotland, followed by the Midlands, with Prof Spector warning “it wouldn’t take much to tip the Midlands into a big problem”.
Every winter the NHS struggles with the usual respiratory illnesses, but this year Covid plus these viruses could bring hospitals to capacity much quicker.
The fact that everyone was locked down and Covid, the predominant virus in the country, kept flu and other illnesses at bay last winter.
But this year, we will have been mingling much more freely with no social distancing in the run up to – and throughout – winter.
This means medics will be faced with both Covid and the classic winter illnesses, which will be back with a bang.
Professor Spector suggests that Plan B be immediately implemented if the NHS becomes overwhelmed again by pressures.
The PM unveiled a “toolbox” of tough contingency measures that could be imposed at short notice to wrestle down a fresh spike.
Speaking at a Downing Street briefing this week he was bullish that his plan “will give us the confidence we don’t need to go back to the lockdowns of the past”.
The legal mandate of face masks in crowds, stressing the need to be cautious and ordering people to work remotely are all part of the contingency plans.
While hated vaccine passports will be shelved for now – Mr Johnson warned they could be suddenly introduced with a week’s notice.
Covid certification will then be required at all nightclubs, indoor venues that have more than 500 guests, and outdoor settings that have more than 1,000.
But gloomy top docs warned of a winter surge as pupils return to schools and the NHS grapples with its usual seasonal strain.
Prof Chris Whitty warned: “Winter is coming, and people should still take this seriously.”
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