10PM LOCKDOWN: Curfew expected as England's coronavirus alert level upgraded to four

Clay Curtis
September 22, 2020

In a presentation of the latest coronavirus data, the Government's chief scientific adviser said: "At the moment we think the epidemic is doubling roughly every seven days".

He said the country was at a "tipping point" and "we're working right now on what further measures may be necessary".

He said "in every age group we've seen an increase", adding this is not due to more testing, because of an increase in test positivity and results of the ONS study, which says around 70,000 people in the United Kingdom have Covid-19.

The UK is on its way for 50,000 new cases of coronavirus per day by mid-October if necessary actions are not taken to stop the expanse of the disease, the government's chief scientific adviser stated.

Speed and action are urgently needed, Vallance and Whitty said, adding that as winter was approaching the COVID problem would haunt Britain for another six months at least.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan said he had agreed with local council leaders and public health experts on new COVID-19 restrictions to be put to central government, in an attempt to stem the outbreak in the capital.

Britain's top medical advisers warned the public Monday they must make further sacrifices to control the second wave of the covid-19 pandemic, saying new coronavirus infections could increase tenfold to nearly 50,000 a day next month if nothing is done now to stem the tide.

Vallance warned that if this worst-case scenario occurred it would lead to "200-plus deaths a day" by mid-November.

"But if we go too far the other way, then we can cause damage to the economy which can feed through to unemployment, to poverty, to deprivation - all of which have long-term health effects, so we need always to keep these two sides in mind".

"This is not someone else's problem", he said.

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Previous holiday weekends during the pandemic have sparked surges of infections, which generally show up two weeks later. The new plan comes as Ontario continues to struggle with long line ups at some of its 147 COVID-19 assessment centres.

On Sunday alone, 3,899 confirmed infections and 18 deaths were reported in the UK.

Britain has Europe's highest death toll in the pandemic, with over 41,800 deaths, according to a tally by Johns Hopkins University. Cases are increasing, hospitalisations are following, he said.

That could lead to 200 new deaths per day a month later, he warned.

It emerged last week that senior NHS officials contacted the HSE seeking help with Covid-19 tests.

This is undoubtedly a hard balance for the Government.

While millions across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are already under some form of restriction, Johnson is not expected to announce a fully fledged lockdown of the kind seen in March.

The Government's rule of six will remain in place in these establishments, and this morning Michael Gove did confirm that there would be no issue in leaving the pub at 10pm and continuing to socialising with friends or family at a household as long as no more than 6 are in attendance.

Vallance said that despite low levels of immunity in the population, the "vast majority of people" are "still susceptible to infection", estimating that eight percent of people have been infected.

An effective testing program is seen as essential to controlling the pandemic because it allows the government to track infections and inform people when they should self-isolate.

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