Expert Opinions Government Governments News Specials

UK lockdown a week earlier could have halved COVID-19 death toll, scientist says

Britain’s death toll from COVID-19 could have been halved if lockdown had been introduced a week earlier, a former member of the UK government’s scientific advisory group said on Wednesday.

Britain has an official death toll from confirmed COVID-19 cases of over 40,000, rising to over 50,000 cases when deaths from suspected cases are included.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson imposed the lockdown on March 23.

Epidemiologist Neil Ferguson told lawmakers that Britain had taken the right measures but too late.

“The epidemic was doubling every three to four days before lockdown interventions were introduced. So had we introduced lockdown measures a week earlier, we would have then reduced the final death toll by at least a half,” Ferguson said.

“So whilst I think the measures … were warranted … certainly had we introduced them earlier, we would have seen many fewer deaths.”

Ferguson, a professor at Imperial College in London, produced a model which influenced Britain’s response to the pandemic, but later stood down from Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) after he was accused of breaking lockdown rules.

His comments echo those of another scientific adviser, John Edmunds, who said at the weekend that Britain should have gone into lockdown earlier.

Johnson said it was too early to say what regrets he had or lessons he could learn over the handling of the pandemic.

“We made the decisions at the time on the guidance of SAGE, including Professor Ferguson, that we thought were right for this country,” he told reporters.

Read More

Meeta Ramnani
Meeta Ramnani
Meeta develops credible content about various markets based on deep research, opinions from experts and inputs from industry leaders. As the managing editor at Smart Industry News, she assures that every piece of news and article adds to the knowledge of decision makers. An avid bike rider, Meeta, is a postgraduate from Indian Institute of Journalism and New Media (IIJNM) Bangalore, where her specialization was Business Journalism. She carries experience from mainstream print media including The Times Group and Sakal Media Group.
https://smarthealthcarenews.com/