Dr Rupert Beale, Group Leader at the Francis Crick Institute’s Cell Biology of Infection Laboratory said:
The decision to enter a second period of national lockdown is a painful one but clearly necessary. I urge everyone to obey the rules: this will ensure we spend the minimum time under these very restrictive and costly measures.
The prime minister mentioned the imminent arrival of new rapid tests. How effectively these are deployed, and how well our Test, Trace, Isolate and Support system can work will determine whether we will be able to avoid repeated lockdowns.
Dr Michael Head, senior research fellow in Global Health at the University of Southampton, said:
There’s over 11000 Covid-19 patients in NHS hospitals, with more than 1000 patients being admitted every day, and increasing numbers of healthcare staff off work with a positive Covid-19 test. That is simply not sustainable. With so much resource dedicated towards infection control, a health service overloaded with severely ill Covid-19 patients cannot also fully accommodate (for example) cancer and stroke patients.
Therefore, any intervention that reduces the burdens of Covid-19 is also good for other patients too.