Stark warning from Chris Whitty – UK has not yet hit the peak of Covid-19 infection

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The UK has not yet hit the peak of the current wave of Covid-19 infection, with the next few weeks being “the worst” of the pandemic for the NHS, England’s chief medical officer has warned.

Professor Chris Whitty said the vaccine rollout offered hope that lockdown restrictions could be lifted in the coming months, but described the current UK death rate as “appalling”.

During a BBC phone-in on the current high case rates, he said: “I don’t think we’re yet at the peak, I’m afraid.

“I think we will be at the peak if everybody can double down and absolutely minimise their contacts.

“The point of the lockdown is to bring that forward, but it only works if everyone really thinks about every individual interaction they have and try and minimise them.”

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Whitty said the new variant of coronavirus was causing a “significant problem”, telling BBC Breakfast: “We will get through together, but at this point in time we’re at the worst point in the epidemic for the UK.”

Asked if coronavirus is being spread outdoors, Whitty said the risks were much lower than for indoors, but said problems could occur if people gathered in groups, such as huddled round a market stall.

It comes as Boris Johnson has reportedly discussed the prospect of introducing tougher controls to ensure the public abide by the restrictions, such as stopping people exercising with one other person.

Whitty told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme the risks from, for example, jogging past someone were “very low”, but said there could be an argument for wearing masks in some circumstances.

“If people for example are crowded together in a queue outdoors, if they’re really huddled together round a market stall or something – that is a risk with this virus – and in that situation there might be some logic to people thinking about wearing masks.”

Vaccination centre
Robert Williams, 84, receives an injection of a Covid-19 vaccine at the NHS vaccine centre at Robertson House in Stevenage, Hertfordshire (Joe Giddens/PA)

Pressed on whether people should wear masks in all outdoor settings, he said the most important thing was actually that people stayed home unless their journey was essential.

“I think that the much more important thing is that people should not be leaving their home unless they absolutely have to,” he said.

“And where they do, try and keep their distance from people.”

He added: “In a sense tinkering with the rules may be useful, but the far more important thing is that everybody abides by the spirit of the rules that are there at the moment.

“Everybody knows what they need to do. And I think that’s the key thing – minimise the number of contacts.”

Whitty suggested measures could still be needed until “some time in the spring” to stem the spread of the virus.

“We’re really going to have to do a significant action for all of us for several more weeks until probably some time in the spring for very much of what we have to do,” he said.

On Sunday, a public health director said coronavirus cases in Wales are “cause for serious concern”, while Scotland’s deputy first minister John Swinney said Scotland is facing “a very alarming situation” with the virus.

Northern Ireland’s health chiefs said the number of Covid-19 patients will double by the third week of January, with one trust boss saying “our hospitals are facing into an abyss”

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  • Show Comments
    1. Why isn’t anyone questioning the encouragement of cycling during the pandemic. I mean. All them sweaty obese middle aged white guys panting their gem ridden breaths all over the place. No wonder London got a new strain.
      Or is it the boffins plan. Cycle nazis creating herd immunity.

    2. The latest provisional estimate (The Guardian – so it must be true!) suggested a total of 608,000 deaths in 2020. Of that number it was suggested that 80,000 were due to the C19 thing. This information was ‘available’ even though the ONS consistently states that all figures for 2020 and 2021 are PROVISIONAL (sorry for shouting ;o)) and the figures for week 52 (for W/E 25/12/20) remain unavailable despite a commitment to publish them the following week. Additionally, it seems that 2020 was one of those rare years of 53 weeks (ONS), the last being W/E 01/01/21!
      Given that the shit started hitting the fan circa March 2020 we haven’t actually completed a whole year yet. However, since December 28th 2019 8,000 more people died than during both 2017 and 2018 (600,000 during each of those years- ONS). If one looks at the numbers for the three weeks in March 2020 that preceded the first lockdown deaths attributed to C19 were extremely low. However by the beginning of May 2020 the death’s attributed ‘the virus’ had gone up to a considerable, even horrific extent.
      Amnesty International have written a report that highlights the mass transfer of positive C19 cases from our hospitals into Care Homes ( that exposes the policy. Strangely the so-called journalists of the M$M haven’t picked it up yet, nor the seemingly same writers for the so-called ‘independant media’ or even those that claim the label ‘left’ as a political badge of honour.
      However, we do have an international ‘Establishment’ that has centuries of experience using the principle of ‘Divide and Rule’ to do just that.

      It’s time to get real. Is the emperor really wearing anything at all? If yes, then is it really as pervasively dangerous as it is claimed by particular ‘interest groups’?

      Just as an interesting discussion topic (a socially distanced conversation of course): How many extra deaths would you expect to see over the last year given the confused response and C19’s alleged lethality? You can express that increase as a %age or fraction. Bubonic plague is said to have increased the death rate throughout Europe (“It is not known for certain how many people died during the Black Death. About 25 million people are estimated to have died in Europe from the plague between 1347 and 1351.” – and that was a huge %age of the total compared to the mortality rate for C19.
      In the recent future there will have to be an accounting for those responsible for the death transfer of positive C19 cases into our Care Homes that inflated the mortality rate of April 2020. Or, of course, we can sweep it under the carpet with our broom of Cognitive Dissonance.

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