The BBC had the opportunity to look at documents that predict the further development of the spreading covid-19 disease in the United Kingdom. According to one model, a country could record more than 4,000 coronavirus deaths per day without action, but most scenarios agree on a maximum of half that number.
A meeting of the British government took place on Saturday, in which it was a response to the development of the situation. The briefing, which was postponed several times, was addressed by Prime Minister Boris Johnson, accompanied by Chris Whitty, England’s chief physician, and Patrick Vallence, the government’s chief scientific adviser.
“There is a significant increase in almost the whole country. The data show that the spread of the disease has been increasing in the last few weeks. We now have around 50,000 new cases a day – and that number is growing, “Whitty said at the conference, being the first to speak. His monologue was complemented by a presentation with graphs.
“Although some measures have already been put in place, the pace of growth is still accelerating,” Vallence continued with a warning about the number R. According to him, the capacity of beds could be filled without further restrictions on November 20.
The prime minister was the last to speak. He announced new measures that the government is forced to implement due to the aforementioned danger. From next Thursday until 2 December, people in England will have to stay in their homes, with the exception of trips to school, work, shopping or outings for exercise or outdoor recreation.
Under the new measures, which should be published in full on Tuesday, households will also be banned from meeting indoors. An exception in this case is, for example, childcare or other forms of mutual support. Another restriction applies to bars and restaurants, which will have to remain closed.
Unlike the first “lockdown”, schools and universities can remain open. The prime minister even appealed to his parents to send their children to school. “We cannot allow this virus to damage our children’s future even more. Christmas will be different this year, maybe very different, but I have a sincere hope and conviction that, thanks to tough measures, we will allow families across the country to be together, “Johnson said after announcing the new measures.
Johnson has resisted the pressure to introduce nationwide measures to combat coronavirus, and parts of the country are coping with the spread. In England, authorities have previously introduced a three-tier system of measures, Wales has declared widespread quarantine, Scotland has introduced a new system of restrictions since Monday, and in Northern Ireland, for example, pubs and restaurants have been closed since mid-October.