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There are growing concerns that a second national lockdown will have to be imposed, due to the “exponential” rise in coronavirus cases. Reports today suggest that England’s Chief Medical Officer Professor Chris Whitty was urging Boris Johnson to enforce another UK-wide lockdown. Dr Hilary Jones told ITV’s GMB that the situation in the country was “getting out of hand”.
He said: “The numbers are increasing quite rapidly.
“In the north-east, in Wales, in Manchester, we are seeing restrictions, and there are a lot of places on the watchlist.
“Cases are increasing exponentially and the R-rate is well above 1.2 and we are going to see more cases.
“That will translate into more people being hospitalised and in intensive care.
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“While we don’t want a national lockdown, we might see regional curfews, say from 10pm, and we might see restrictions on how much people can travel.
“We absolutely have no room for complacency. We need to keep this under control because if things get out of hand we’ll definitely be requiring another national lockdown.”
The Health Secretary Matt Hancock is expected to confirm new local lockdown measures for northeast England in the House of Commons later today.
The latest restrictions could see almost two million people in north-east England under local lockdown measures as coronavirus cases rise.
On Wednesday, there were 3,991 new confirmed cases of coronavirus.
Health Minister Edward Argar told Sky News this morning that the Prime Minister “doesn’t want to see another national lockdown”.
He dismissed reports that Boris Johnson was being recommended to take the action due to a rise in coronavirus infections.
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A former World Health Organisation director Anthony Costello suggested that England’s Chief Medical Officer Professor Chris Whitty was recommending a two-week national lockdown.
He posted on Twitter on Wednesday night: “I’m hearing from a well-connected person that government now thinks, in absence of testing, there are 38,000 infections per day.
“Chris Whitty is advising PM for a two week national lockdown.”
It comes as Prime Minister Boris Johnson told the Sun this week: “The only way to make sure the country is able to enjoy Christmas is to be tough now.”
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