THE government drew up plans for a “firewall” lockdown in October if hospital admissions continue to rise, it has been learned.
A senior government scientist has revealed that the UK is on the verge of entering a “prolonged spike” in infections and hospitalizations that could push health services to their limits.
According to i, the contingency plan could see the half term extended from one week to two.
The scientist, a member of the government’s science advisory group for emergencies, told the newspaper: “This is basically the precautionary break suggested by Sage last year.
“It would be wise to have contingency plans, and if a lockdown is necessary, to time it in such a way that it has minimal economic and societal impact.”
“We’re going to be at a peak, although a prolonged peak, very soon, so it’s not really the same situation as last year, when failure to reduce prevalence would have resulted in the collapse of the NHS and of people who died in parking lots.
“Hospitals could overflow before deaths reach the same level. Acting early will prevent this level.
It comes as cases of Covid-19 in the city remain “very high” as thousands of students return to school.
In the seven days leading up to August 27, the number of new confirmed Covid-19 cases in Brighton and Hove fell 23% to 908.
This equates to a weekly rate of 311 per 100,000 population and closer to the rate for England of 313 per 100,000.
But despite the drop in cases, this remains above the Southeast’s rate of 284 per 100,000.
Alistair Hill, director of public health at Brighton and Hove City Council, said while the drop in numbers is welcome, Covid cases in the city are still very high.
He said: “This is good news, but the number of cases remains high and with many of us returning from holidays and festivals, and more returning to educational and work institutions, it could lead to to more cases in the coming weeks.
“This means that regular testing and all the hygiene habits we have learned throughout the pandemic remain so important.
“Regular hand washing, good ventilation, wearing face coverings if necessary and making room for each other have helped reduce infections during closures and still serve us well. ”
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This notice was published: 2021-09-07 06:09:05