Covid News: Scientists ravage Boris Johnson over Freedom Day plans – “Madness!” | United Kingdom | New
And another suggested the changes would only fuel divisions in society, saying individuals and employers have been left to make crucial public health decisions. Independent Sage discussed the proposed changes, confirmed by Mr Johnson earlier this week, during their Friday briefing yesterday amid growing concerns over the so-called beta variant, which may be able to evade the immune response being generated with the AstraZeneca vaccine.
Professor Christina Pagel, Professor of Operations Research at University College London (UCL), said: “I feel edgy, sad and angry.
“We’re having the wrong conversation. To open on Monday is madness. We shouldn’t be doing it.
“We should talk about how we deal with cases now. “
She warned: “A report commissioned by Sir Patrick Vallance says that at peak we will have 20,000 to 30,000 cases of new long Covids every day.
“What are we doing to our young people, to our children, to our vulnerable? It is simply not true.
Dr Kit Yates, senior lecturer in the Department of Mathematical Sciences at the University of Bath, added: “The idea of allowing the disease to spread throughout the population, to infect many young people who have not not received the best protection after the young people sacrificed so much for the older generation, that is wrong and we are letting them down.
JUSTIN: The beta variant in France, a threat in the United Kingdom with “proof that it EVADE the vaccine”
He added: “The only thing is that people are ahead of politicians. I think people are going to behave in a reasonable way.
“But here we have a government that was talking about data and not dates – they threw it out the window.
“They talked about following the science and threw it out the window.”
Professor McKee said: “It’s actually really bad for democracy, for public health, for governance and everything in between when you have a government that sends out such confusing messages and compromises itself in so many ways.”
Dr Zubaida Haque, former Acting Director of the Runnymede Trust, said: “I am really worried because the government has created the situation where we have a raging third wave and yet they have transferred the responsibility to individuals and employers.
“There are going to be huge tensions and divisions in society as people have to figure out what is right, what is wrong, what is safe, what is not. “
The prevalence of the beta variant prompted the government to announce that holidaymakers returning from France to England must continue to self-quarantine for 10 days – even if they are doubly bitten – when restrictions on other Amber List countries are relaxed.
Professor John Edmunds, of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and a member of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), told BBC Radio 4’s Today program: “The beta variant has remained a threat throughout. It’s probably less contagious than the Delta variant that’s spreading here in the UK right now.
“Where it has an advantage is that it is able to evade the immune response to a better extent.”
He added: “As the population here becomes more and more immune, the conditions are right for the beta variant to gain an advantage, so I can understand the concern.
“Among the existing and known variants, this one has always been a threat to us.
“There is good evidence from South Africa that it can evade the immune response generated by the AstraZeneca vaccine more effectively.”