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The British Medical Association urges the government to make masks mandatory INSIDE offices


Face masks should be mandatory in offices to stop a devastating second wave of coronavirus, medical leaders warned today.

Boris Johnson announced yesterday that all retail and hospitality workers are required to wear face covers under the latest lockdown restrictions.

But the British Medical Association (BMA) said today it was "illogical" that this rule was not enforced in the summer when shops, restaurants and pubs first reopened.

The medical union said the new rules are not strict enough to prevent a second wave and are now urging all indoor workplaces to make face coverings mandatory.

It also beat ministers for taking their staff back to the offices and actively encouraging workers to work from home at a time when more and more cases were emerging – a rhetoric the government is now on Turned upside down.

The chairman of the BMA, Dr. Chaand Nagpaul, said, “The BMA has argued time and again that it is illogical for employees in shops, pubs and restaurants not to wear face masks like customers. We are pleased that this has come into force with a delay.

"Given that the infection spreads equally indoors, these rules should also apply to offices and other workplaces."

It comes when scientists argue about whether number 10 has taken adequate measures to contain the spread of the virus.

Two top SAGE scientists criticized the latest lockdown guidelines for not going far enough. However, another Oxford University expert warned the UK not to "put itself back in lockdown" if, in any case, panic on any uptrend.

Face masks should be mandatory in offices to stop devastating second wave of coronavirus, medical leaders warned today (file)

Professor John Edmunds, an infectious disease expert at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, warned that action was not being taken quickly enough in March and that this "mistake" will repeat itself as the new rules are too lax.

And Professor Robert West, a health psychologist at University College London and a member of SAGE, added, “An early closure will have some ramifications, but I don't think it will be enough to stop the surge, despite the other measures announced. & # 39;

Dr. Nagpaul urged the government to do more to help employers make workplaces Covid-safe when working from home is not an option and to reduce the number of people allowed to meet indoors.

Dr. Chaand Nagpaul, chairman of the British Medical Association (BMA) council, said the recent lockdown restrictions in England were not strict enough to prevent a devastating second wave

Dr. Chaand Nagpaul, chairman of the British Medical Association (BMA) council, said the recent lockdown restrictions in England were not strict enough to prevent a devastating second wave

"The prime minister today missed the opportunity to revise the 'rule of six' which currently allows six members to meet indoors, while previously only members of two households could meet," he said.

'Data suggest that household transmission is by far the largest factor of infection and should therefore be addressed as soon as possible.'

Yesterday Boris Johnson imposed a 10 p.m. curfew on all restaurants, bars and pubs across England starting Thursday, with the hospitality sector also limited to table service only.

The requirement to wear face coverings is expanded to include retail workers and customers in indoor hospitality establishments, except when they are at a table to eat or drink.

He also announced the end of the government's return to work when he said he was now urging "office workers who can work from home".

The government has actively encouraged workers to work from home, and yesterday's U-turn marked a humiliating rise for the Prime Minister, who earlier this month told his cabinet that our country is right back in large numbers and rightly so return to the office too & # 39 ;.

The BMA also wants the public to have more information about infection rates in their areas so that it is as easy to look up as the weather or pollen count.

Professor John Edmunds, an epidemiologist with the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, warned the government had not learned the lessons of March

Professor John Edmunds, an epidemiologist with the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, warned the government had not learned the lessons of March

Scientists at war because of new blocking rules

Britian's best scientists have exchanged blows over whether the latest coronavirus rules of number 10 have gone far enough.

Two SAGE advisors criticized the government for not going far enough with their latest lockdown rules.

Professor John Edmunds, an infectious disease expert at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, warned that action was not being taken quickly enough in March and that this "mistake" will repeat itself as the new rules are too lax.

And Professor Robert West, a health psychologist at University College London and a member of SAGE, added, “An early closure will have some implications, but I don't think it will be enough to stop the surge, despite the other measures announced. & # 39;

However, other experts have recommended the UK to switch from a strategy to suppress the spread of coronavirus to a more relaxed Swedish strategy aimed at containing it.

Professor Carl Heneghan, director of the Center for Evidence-Based Medicine at Oxford University, told BBC Radio 4 that he suspected a postponement after meeting the Prime Minister.

"We are beginning to understand that we are trying to control the spread of the infection rather than suppress it," he said. “We are gradually seeing a step towards Sweden. If you are looking at bars and restaurants for example, that's the guideline there – they have table service. I hope we now see more consistent policy that stays in place. & # 39;

"The public wants to do their part to keep infection rates down. Ministers need to provide them with the information they need to take proactive action," said Dr. Nagpaul.

"Not only would these additional measures pose no risk to the economy in the short term, but they could also be key to preventing further lockdowns and significant disruption to business and economic activity."

He added, "Indeed, having the right safety precautions in place to minimize the risk of infection is critical to giving people the confidence they need to go out safe and stimulate the economy."

Professor Edmunds accused the government of ignoring the March warnings broadcast on BBC Radio 4's Today program.

In a personal capacity, he said authorities would "double and double and double again" cases of coronavirus before taking the right steps, but by then it would be "too late".

"And then we have the worst of both worlds, because then, in order to slow down the epidemic and bring it back down to a place where it was now or in the summer, you have to trigger the epidemic, slow down the epidemic for a very long time, very hard, ”he said.

& # 39; (This) we had to do in March because we did not react quickly enough in March and I think we did not learn from our mistake then and will unfortunately repeat it.

"I suspect there will be very tough measures across the UK at some point, but it will be too late again."

Adding concern among epidemiologists, Professor West told The Times, "An early shutdown will have some ramifications, but I don't think it will be enough to halt the surge despite the other measures announced."

He said there is a "drinking balance" where people "have the amount they want to drink" and that by closing early, "you may have some decrease, but it is not proportional to the decrease in hours".

However, scientists continue to disagree, and others argue that the restrictions will limit the spread of the virus.

Dr. Jennifer Cole, a biological anthropologist at Royal Holloway University, said yesterday that alcohol was one of the biggest influences on people who observed social distancing, thereby controlling the spread of the virus.

"The more drunk you are, the less inhibited and less risk averse you are," she said.

“Closing bars and restaurants at 10 p.m. simply makes people more sober. It gives them plenty of time for a meal or quick drink with friends after work, but it means they're likely sober enough to remember to wear face covering on the train or bus home, and to be careful around the elderly Relatives when they get home.

“It gives the restaurant and bar staff time to thoroughly clean the venue when the last customers have left without having to work inappropriately late. This means that much of the risk is reduced. & # 39;

Professor Whitty is believed to be helping Scotland's drive to limit social interactions in the household and believes England should have followed suit, reports The Times.

Jonathan Van Tam and Jenny Harries, the deputies of Professor Whitty, are also believed to have raised concerns that the measures did not go far enough.

Boris Johnson told the nation last night that there would be further restrictions on the cards if his warnings were not listened to and measures followed.

"The virus is no less deadly than it was in the spring," he told the public, "and our best weapon against it is common sense and community."

It adds to the rule of six that has been in place for more than a week and that prevents people from meeting in large groups.

In Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon went a step further by banning people from visiting other homes unless they lived alone.

She claimed the Scottish Chief Medical Officer and National Clinical Director had advised that the Prime Minister's package "on its own will not be enough to lower the R number".

She added, "We need to take into account that household interaction is a major driver of transmission."

The rules will be closely monitored over the next two weeks to see if further action needs to be taken.

Local areas in England with major outbreaks have placed stricter restrictions, including preventing households from mixing.

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