Dire warnings that Britain will be hit by the Covid third wave sweeping Europe were made today – but an expert tonight warns “it’s not inevitable'”
The Prime Minister today warned Brits were “facing the same pandemic, we all have the same problems” as European nations, as soaring rates of the South African variant of Covid-19 are recorded in France.
Scientists believe there could be up to 2,000 new cases of the new variant spreading in the country, as Paris on Friday entered lockdown once again amid the third wave and a faltering vaccine rollout.
A month-long lockdown was imposed on the capital and parts of the north of France to curb the spread of highly contagious coronavirus variants.
But how worried should we be in Britain?
What is your view? Have your say in the comment section
Speaking to the Mirror, Dr Mike Tildesley, an infectious disease modelling expert and a member of SAGE, answered your questions about a third wave.
How likely is a third wave?
It’s not inevitable. As we relax restrictions we know the R rate may rise but we have the vaccine which will counteract some of that.
How might it look?
We may get a third wave in terms of cases but with nothing like the number of hospital admissions and deaths. The vaccine is effective in preventing severe infection.
Will we see another lockdown?
Never say never but my hope is we won’t. It depends on how rapidly the Government can react to any future eventualities.
Will it lengthen curbs?
If infections increase, even without more hospitalisations, we’ll need to ask what we are prepared to accept to return to our freedoms.
Isthereariskofathirdwave of hospitalisations and deaths?
If by autumn immunity wanes as the protection wears off, you may see a rise in severe cases. You’ll need boosters.
How will the booster vaccines work?
Vaccine companies are working on providing new vaccines to protect against new variants. It’s not unusual – it’s what has to happen every year with flu vaccines.
Why such a strong warning from the PM about a third wave?
Our political experts write: Government scientists say rising infection rates in Europe will almost certainly have an impact here.
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Critics say Boris Johnson wants to contrast the UK’s vaccine success with the EU’s slow rollout to distract from the Government’s disastrous handling of the pandemic up to this point.
Do falling UK rates increase pressure to lift lockdown?
Government insiders think the PM will once again listen to Tory backbenchers keen to lift curbs earlier than his roadmap sets out.