The British Government's Undersecretary of Health Nadim Zahawi has refrained from refuting a report in the newspaper 'i' stating that a new lockdown plan has been tabled in Britain in October if the sharp increase in hospitalizations of Covid patients continues.
The report cites an unnamed Johnson government scientific adviser as a member of the independent SAGE panel of experts, who warns that the UK is entering a period of "prolonged peak" of coronavirus infections and hospitalizations.
He added that if day-to-day admissions were not reduced and public hospitals were deemed to pose a threat, then restrictive measures could be re-imposed during the planned school holidays in the last week of October.
Admissions of new Covid patients have been stubbornly close to or even more than 900 per day for the past two weeks, with more than 7.600 people currently being treated.
According to the newspaper, the government's plan is believed to provide for a one-week extension of the school holidays, ie the first week of November. From there, depending on the severity of the situation, it is foreseen from the reinstatement of the obligation to keep distances and restrictions on gatherings to a full but short-term "fire" lockdown with operation of only the shops selling necessary items.
In such a scenario, the resumption of travel restrictions is considered possible, so that there is not a large volume of travel by families during the school holidays.
Speaking to Sky News this morning, Mr Zahawi said the "absolute priority" was the imminent launch of the third dose of the coronavirus vaccine to those most vulnerable.
He pointed out, however, that in order to continue the path to the "one way" towards the opening of the economy, the program of the third installment "must be done correctly".
If such a thing is achieved, added the deputy minister in charge of vaccinations against the coronavirus, then by the time the country could go from the pandemic to an endemic phase of the spread of the virus, which will be managed on an annual basis.