Home Breaking Top expert says testing the population is key to ending a lockdown

Top expert says testing the population is key to ending a lockdown

by LLB Reporter
16th Apr 20 2:30 pm

Professor Neil Fergusson who is the government top scientist advisor accused the government of acting too slowly over mass testing of the population.

Professor Fergusson said mass testing is the only key to ease the lockdown measures as only then will the government know how many people actually have the virus, or are now immune.

The Professor from Imperial College London has called on the government for “decisions to be accelerated.”

His comments come as the Health Secretary Matt Hancock said an emergency meeting will be held on Thursday, whereby the lockdown extension will be reviewed.

He said the virus would “run rampant” if there were any hasty decisions on lifting the lockdown too early.

Professor Fergusson told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, there needs to be “a single-minded emphasis” in the government developing mass testing plus tracking and tracing new cases.

He added, “If we want to open schools, let people get back to work, then we need to keep transmission down in another manner.”

When asked if the government was moving towards an exit strategy, he said, “I’m not completely sure. I think there’s a lot of discussion. I would like to see action accelerated.

“We need to put in place an infrastructure, a command and control structure, a novel organisation for this.”

He added, “There needs to be more co-ordination I think, yes. That may be going on, I don’t have unique insight, but I think it could be enhanced.”

Professor Fergusson agrees with Nadine Dorries the Health Minister that social distancing will have to continue until a vaccine has been found.

Dorries sparked chaos in government on Thursday after she said the UK will remain in a “full lockdown” until a vaccine has been made, which could be up to 18 months away.

Public health officials have said, it will still take a year to 18 months to fully validate any potential vaccine – despite human trials beginning.

Last month Britain’s chief scientific adviser said that it would be at least 2021 before a vaccine was ready for the UK.

People in the UK have been warned that they will be going no where this year for a holiday in the EU as leader will keep their borders closed until the end of the year.

Ursual von der Leyen, the European Commission President, warned holiday makers not to make any plans during the coronavirus pandemic.

The French President, Emmanuel Macron has told the bloc to keep borders shut until, at least the end of September.

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