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Iran Press TV

Health Secretary Hancock sounds warning on Covid-19 second wave

Iran Press TV

Saturday, 29 August 2020 3:58 PM

As the UK struggles to contain the coronavirus pandemic, a senior government minister is already warning about the fallout from a "second wave" of the deadly infection.

Health secretary, Matt Hancock, has warned of "nationwide restrictions" in the event of a "second spike" of Covid-19 infections this winter.

The health secretary said: "Cases go up again, and we have to use very extensive local lockdowns or take further national action … We don't rule that out, but we don't want to see it".

Speaking to the Times (August 29), Hancock warned of the potential convergence of ordinary flu and Covid-19, thus placing greater pressure on the health system.

Most ominously, the health secretary ruled out a quick vaccine solution, claiming that a vaccine was likely to be available "sometime next year".

In the absence of a vaccine, the government's strategy for coping with a Covid-19 second wave this winter rests, according to Hancock, on "three lines of defense".

These include social distancing measures, National Health Service (NHS) test and trace and stringent local lockdowns to contain the spread of infections.

Despite his downbeat assessment, the health secretary was careful to avoid mention of a full-scale national lockdown and instead held up the prospect of "nationwide restrictions".

It is worth noting that Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, has previously compared the prospect of another full-scale nationwide lockdown (similar to the one imposed in late March) to a "nuclear deterrent".

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