A SAGE adviser today indicated that a third national lockdown, including mass school closings, may be needed to quell Covid as he insisted on preventing the virus from spreading.
Professor Sir Mark Walport claimed the "mutated" strain of the coronavirus is quickly spreading in children, with children between the ages of 12 and 16 being seven times more likely to "infect" a household.
Speaking on the BBC's Andrew Marr Show when Liverpool leaders were calling for a blanket shutdown, he said it was "very, very difficult" to keep the disease under control "without stricter social distancing measures".
Sir Mark also suggested that Britain was trying to keep cases low because it was a "western liberal democracy," suggesting draconian countermeasures in unfree countries like Vietnam have suppressed the virus.
When asked today if Tier 4 restrictions are sufficient, the former Chief Scientific Officer said today, “It's the Tier 4 restrictions, they obey them.
“It's about breaking through essentially every possible transmission path we possibly can. These are the things that are absolutely necessary, and it is pretty clear that we are going to need more. & # 39;
About & # 39; mutated & # 39; Covid he said: & # 39; We now have a much more communicable variant and I'm afraid this is the natural evolution of viruses.
& # 39; Those who can transmit most effectively have an advantage over other variants, and it is clear that this variant transmits easier. It is also transmitted more easily in younger age groups.
“It's good to note that it doesn't seem to be causing any worse illness or that it is more resilient to the effects of the vaccine, but it will be very, very difficult to keep it under control without stricter social distancing measures. & # 39;
Sir Mark continued, “What actually stops the virus, and we know it can, is to keep people apart. The virus can only get from one person to another through proximity. So it's really about doing everything possible to make us as safe as possible. & # 39;
When Boris Johnson refused to rule out a full shutdown today, Boris Johnson told Marr he was "reconciled" to further curtailing public life if the number of coronavirus cases rises.
In the latest twist on the pandemic:
- Boris Johnson urged parents to send children to schools in Tier 4 areas tomorrow, but hinted that he would close schools if cases occurred in those areas.
- Ofsted boss Amanda Spielman said the study of children cannot be "taken on leave".
- The school principals called for the GCSE and A-level exams to be abolished this summer.
- Experts who led the UK vaccination program defended the decision to widen the gap between the two doses, insisting that this is "the way we save lives".
- Last night's health bosses insisted that urgent cancer surgeries in London not be scrapped to ease the burden on hospitals flooded with Covid patients.
- Jo Stevens, Labor secretary for shadow culture, is being treated in hospital for coronavirus, her staff said last night.
- Another 57,725 had positive test results and recorded 445 deaths yesterday;
- A consultant at London Children's Hospital beat up an "irresponsible" nurse who claimed in a BBC interview that her hospital had an "entire children's ward" with Covid.
- Young women without voting rights are most likely to reject a Covid vaccine if it were available tomorrow. This was the result of the Find Out Now survey.
- According to a massive poll, the Prime Minister is about to lose most of the Red Wall seats, which won his historic election victory a year ago, and his own seat.
SAGE advisor Sir Mark Walport has hinted today that a third national lockdown may be needed to quell Covid as he insisted on preventing the virus from spreading, keeping people apart
Two-thirds of the UK population are now in Tier 4, the rest in Tier 3 locks. Only the Isles of Scilly off the coast of Cornwall are in the easy level 2
Boris Johnson today refused to rule out a full shutdown, telling Marr he was "reconciled" to further curtailing public life as coronavirus cases rise
Sir Mark also claimed that an earlier lockdown would have reduced cases and deaths, telling the Andrew Marr Show, “It's absolutely clear that we can see other countries, for example Vietnam, that have managed to keep their cases down.
“But we can see that western liberal democracies are much more difficult. Britain is not alone in this, but that doesn't necessarily make it any better. & # 39;
He also urged people who had a coronavirus vaccine not to go out and party, admitting that there are many things we do not know about the vaccines.
Sir Mark's interview comes as the Prime Minister signaled that anti-Covid measures are likely to get tougher.
When asked if he could guarantee the schools will open on Jan. 18, Mr Johnson told Marr, "Well, of course we will continue to evaluate the impact of the Tier 4 measures, the Tier 3 measures."
When asked if GCSE and A-Level exams should be canceled, the Prime Minister said, "We have to be realistic, we have to be realistic about how quickly this new variant has spread … we have to be realistic about that The impact it is having on our NHS … and we must be humble in the face of this virus. & # 39;
Pointed out that tighter restrictions could be put in place, Mr Johnson said, “We may have to do things over the next few weeks that will be tougher in many parts of the country. I am fully reconciled with that. & # 39;
He added, “There are obviously a number of tougher measures we would have to consider … I'm not going to speculate now about what they would be, but I'm sure all of our viewers and listeners will understand what Things … clearly school closings that we had to do in March is one of those things. & # 39;
Mr Johnson said, “What we are doing now is the tiering system, which is a very tough system … and unfortunately it is likely to become more difficult to keep things under control. But we will check. & # 39;
He added, “And we have the prospect of tens of millions of dollars in vaccines hit the market. And that I think is something that should keep people in what I predicted when you were on your show in October is going to be a very bumpy time right now. It's bumpy and it's getting bumpy. & # 39;
Meanwhile, Liverpool Council Presidents today called for a third national lockdown to contain the new "mutant" strain of Covid and prevent a "catastrophe".
The city's incumbent mayor Wendy Simon and the cabinet of the Labor-led city council say the rate of rise in coronavirus cases has reached "alarming levels" and that urgent action is needed to save lives and the NHS.
Today's prime minister signaled that anti-Covid measures are likely to get tougher. When asked if he could guarantee the schools will open on Jan. 18, Mr Johnson told Marr, "Well, of course we will continue to evaluate the impact of the Tier 4 measures, the Tier 3 measures."
Cases in Liverpool have nearly tripled to 350 per 100,000 in the past two weeks, despite the city successfully leading the national pilot for community testing, which resulted in it becoming the first city to move from Tier 3 to Tier, according to Tier 2 was included official figures
London is now the epicenter of the outbreak and its hospitals are being overwhelmed by the flood of patients. The weekly fall rate is 858 per 100,000, twice the national average
The new "mutated" strain of Covid is believed to have a higher transmission rate and is most common in London and the South East, where health bosses say hospitals are overburdened.
School principals are calling for the GCSE and A-Level exams to be canceled this summer amid the chaos of the school closings
School principals are calling on the government to cancel the GCSE and A-level exams this summer amid indignation about Gavin Williamson's plans to keep schools open.
Most pre-schools in England are expected to reopen their doors tomorrow, while secondary schools will reopen in a staggered manner later this month with plans to test every student on a weekly basis.
However, yesterday the UK's largest apprenticeship union told its members that it was not safe to return to the classroom. Several left-wing councils called for their elementary schools to switch to online teaching only.
And in yet another blow to the Minister of Education's plans, UK school principals are now calling for this year's exams to be canceled in order to give priority to "overall public health, the safety of students and staff".
They also claim that it would be unfair to force students to take exams if those whose schools opened earlier had more contact time than those with later start dates.
The worthless? The campaign group – a gathering of 2,000 school principals in 80 local authorities – said: “Greater public health, the safety of students and staff should take precedence over exams.
"Public safety should not be compromised or driven by an inflexible pursuit of GCSE and high school diplomas."
Headmaster of Tanbridge House School in Horsham – and one of the WorthLess? Leader – told the Times: "There is great skepticism that exams can now be conducted fairly."
The tribe is believed to spread from south to north, creating increasing pressure on the NHS.
Cases in Liverpool have nearly tripled to 350 per 100,000 in the past two weeks, despite the city leading the pilot for community testing, which resulted in it becoming the first city to switch from Tier 3 to Tier 2 .
The request for a new lockdown was made in a statement by Cllr Wendy Simon and Public Health Cabinet Member Cllr Paul Brant.
The city's current mayor, Joe Anderson, is on bail with the police on suspicion of conspiracy to bribe and intimidate witnesses.
The statement said: “It is clear that the country is now at a crossroads with Covid-19. The dire reality is that this virulent new strain of virus is very much on the rise today and we must act now to prevent a crisis that will cause even more pain and fear. & # 39;
A health ministry spokeswoman said the government would "not hesitate to take the necessary steps to protect local communities."
England is nearing a blanket closure after government efforts to reopen schools are disrupted by left-wing councils and teaching unions.
Gavin Williamson confirmed Friday that all London elementary schools will remain closed for most students next week – and not just those in certain districts as set out earlier in the week – but unions say all schools will be closed for the next two weeks should close.
Last night, the Ministry of Education said distance learning was "a last resort" and classrooms should be reopened "wherever possible" with appropriate security measures to reduce the risk of transmission.
"As we said earlier, as a last resort, we will move to distance learning with the involvement of public health officials in areas where infections and pressures on the NHS are greatest," the spokesman said.
Hundreds of new vaccination sites are set to go live this week as the NHS steps up its vaccination program with the newly approved Oxford University and AstraZeneca Jab.
As of Monday, around 530,000 doses of the vaccine will be available for launch across the UK. More than a million patients have already received their first dose of the Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine, which was the first to be approved by the drug and healthcare regulator.
Ofsted's chief inspector Amanda Spielman said, however, that children's education cannot be "suspended" for months while vaccinations are being introduced and that time away from the classroom should be kept to an "absolute minimum," the reported Sunday Telegraph.
Child Commissioner Anne Longfield told the newspaper that schools should be the last to close and open first when it is safe to do so, adding: “I hope, for the sake of children and parents, this is measured in days, not weeks and I would be particularly interested in keeping the primaries as open as possible. & # 39;
Union leader Sir Keir Starmer said the launch of the vaccine was "our great hope", adding, "I want the government to do everything possible to harness our NHS 'exceptional talents so we can vaccinate at least two million Britons a week until the end of the month. & # 39;
But as he wrote in the Sunday Mirror, he criticized "a chaotic last-minute U-turn in schools" adding, "Parents, teachers and students are confused about who will and will not be back in school tomorrow."
National Education Union (NEW) general secretary Mary Bousted said schools should be closed for two weeks to break the chain of transmission and prevent the NHS from becoming overwhelmed.
The union, which represents the majority of teachers, has told its members that it is not safe to return to classrooms on Monday.
NAHT general secretary Paul Whiteman said the union had taken preparatory steps in legal proceedings against the Department of Education and asked them to share their scientific data on security and transmission rates.
The unions have also called for schools to reopen in Wales next week to be postponed. Laura Doel, director of the NAHT Cymru school principals union, said: "The latest data shows that much of Wales has lost control of infections."
Starting January 4th, all London elementary schools will be required to offer two weeks of distance learning to all children, with the exception of vulnerable children and those of key workers who are allowed to attend.
Mr Williamson said the January 1 decision to extend the closure to the nine remaining London boroughs and the City of London was a "last resort".
Under the government's original plan, secondary schools and colleges should be closed to most students for the first two weeks of January, while elementary schools in 50 municipalities in the south of England, including 23 London boroughs, were also asked to keep their doors closed until January 18.
The Green-led Brighton and Hove City Council has advised elementary schools in the Tier 4 area not to return in person until January 18, except for vulnerable children and key workers, although the government has allowed most schools to open in person.
Linda Bauld, professor of public health at the University of Edinburgh, said transmission among elementary school students is "still very limited" while secondary school students, especially older teens, can pass the virus on in the same way as adults.
However, health professionals have warned of increasing pressure on services. Professor Andrew Goddard, president of the Royal College of Physicians, said current case numbers from the BBC are "pretty mild" compared to expectations for a week.
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