Home Business News Government advisor is ‘very fearful’ of another ‘lockdown Christmas if we don’t act now’

Government advisor is ‘very fearful’ of another ‘lockdown Christmas if we don’t act now’

25th Oct 21 4:00 pm

A government advisor who is a member of the New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (Nervtag) has said we must “act now” if we do not want another Christmas lockdown.

He said that public must wear face masks and work from home if you can as this will prevent the spread of Covid.

This comes as Boris Johnson and MPs are ignoring calls from health leaders for tightening restrictions as infections are soaring daily.

Professor Peter Openshaw who advises the government on Covid told BBC Breakfast, “‘I’m very fearful that we’re going to have another lockdown Christmas if we don’t act soon.

“We know that with public health measures the time to act is immediately. There’s no point in delaying.

“If you do delay then you need to take even more stringent actions later. The immediacy of response is absolutely vital if you’re going to get things under control.

“We all really, really want a wonderful family Christmas where we can all get back together.

“If that’s what we want, we need to get these measures in place now in order to get transmission rates right down so that we can actually get together and see one another over Christmas.”

The scientific advisor warned that it is “unacceptable to be letting this run at the moment.”

He added, “I think the hospitals in many parts of the country are barely coping actually.

“Talking to people on the front line, I think it’s just not sustainable to keep going at this rate.

“I think it’s just unacceptable to see the number of deaths that we’ve got at the moment.

“At one stage last week there were 180 deaths in a single day. That is just too many deaths.

“We seem to have got used to the idea that we’re going to have many, many people dying of Covid and that I think is just not the case.

“We need to slow down transmission and really redouble efforts to get everyone vaccinated and all the boosters out, and then we can open up again.”

Prof Openshaw was asked what he would say to people over what they can do to stop the spread of the virus should the government not reintroduce measures.

He said, “I think take matters into your own hands. Don’t wait necessarily for Government policy.

“I’m very, very reluctant now to go into crowded spaces because I know that roughly one in 60 people in a crowded space are going to have the virus.

“If you can, cycle to work, don’t go on public transport.

“I think do everything possible in your control to try to reduce transmission. Don’t wait for the government to change policy.

“The sooner we all act, the sooner we can get this transmission rate down, and the greater the prospect of having a Christmas with our families.”

The World Health Organization (WHO) warned vaccines alone will not stop the pandemic and we must be wearing face masks.

WHO spokesperson Margaret Harris told Times Radio, “The problem is focusing on one thing, the vaccine isn’t going to get us out of this.

“We really have to do other measures.

“We have got to be serious about not crowding. We have still got to be looking at wearing the masks, when you’re indoors particularly.”

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