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Chris Whitty warns lockdown roadmap could be delayed amid fears of deadly Covid 'surge'


Chris Whitty explained the Government is taking a big “risk” over April and May when more lockdown measures will begin to be lifted. He explained that despite the vaccine rollout the modelling suggests cases will “soar” as lockdown measures are eased and rejected calls for earlier lifting. Chief Scientific Advisor Sir Patrick Vallance added that schools – which reopened on March 8 – could push up the coronavirus infection rate by as much as 50 percent. 

Professor Whitty told MPs: “As things are opening up, what all the modelling suggests is at some point we will get a surge in virus.

“Whether that happens, we hope it doesn’t happen soon, but it might, for example, happen later in the summer if we open up gradually, or if there’s a seasonal effect it might happen over the next autumn or winter.

“But I think all the modelling suggests there is going to be a further surge and that will find the people who have either not been vaccinated or where the vaccine’s not worked.

“Some of them will end up in hospital and sadly some of them will go on to die. That’s just the reality of where we are.”


Professor Whitty added that there is little known on how transmission rates will change when lockdown measures are eased and explained while the vaccine programme has been successful there is still a risk of catching the disease.

He also explained that many in the UK will believe things are “all over” once the first iterations of lockdown begin to ease which he says will cause spikes in cases, 

The Chief Medical Officer told everyone to look at what was happening on the continent as countries ease their lockdown measures, see spikes and reinstall the restrictions. 

He said: “It’s very easy to forget quite how quickly things can turn bad if you don’t keep a very close eye on it.”


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