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Iran Press TV

UK must prepare for second coronavirus wave: Health leaders warn

Iran Press TV

Wednesday, 24 June 2020 9:37 AM

Medical experts have sternly warned that there should be an urgent review to determine whether the United Kingdom is prepared for a second wave of the coronavirus.

The warning came in an open letter published in the British Medical Journal, which was signed by the presidents of the Royal Colleges of Surgeons, Nursing, Physicians, and GPs.

It came after Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced sweeping changes to the country's lockdown. He said Tuesday the two-meter social distancing rule would be reduced to "one-meter plus," adding that pubs, restaurants, hotels and cinemas will reopen from 4 July.

So far, more than 306,200 have tested positive and over 42,900 have died across the United Kingdom.

In the letter to the leaders of all the British political parties, the health leaders said, "Several countries are now experiencing Covid-19 flare-ups.

"While the future shape of the pandemic in the UK is hard to predict, the available evidence indicates that local flare-ups are increasingly likely and a second wave a real risk."

"Many elements of the infrastructure needed to contain the virus are beginning to be put in place, but substantial challenges remain," they added.

They also called on ministers to form a cross-party group with a "constructive, non-partisan, four nations approach" that would develop practical recommendations.

They further said that the review ought to focus on "areas of weakness where action is needed urgently to prevent further loss of life and restore the economy as fully and as quickly as possible".

Meanwhile, Sir David King, a former chief scientific adviser, has said that new changes announced by Johnson were "extraordinarily risky".

Speaking to SkyNews, he said that "the winter is a likely period when the virus takes off again," therefore, the country should do what it can to "get completely rid of the virus" before then.

"If we move too quickly, which is what I think is being proposed here, the risk of running into a second wave becomes very significant."

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