Details of governments new ‘3 tier’ local lockdown plans have begun to filter from Whitehall. Those in the highest risk areas could see pubs and other businesses close for six months!
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The Prime Minister is to unveil his new ‘3 tier’ system of Coronavirus lockdowns on Monday afternoon. Boris Johnson will address the House of Commons at 3 PM; This will be followed by a televised address from Downing Street at 6 PM.
What will a Tier 3 lockdown look like?
Voice Britannia has learned the details of the strictest of the new COVID lockdown tiers, tier-3. Areas subject to tier-3 lockdown will see most pubs and bars close, with the sale of alcohol prohibited in most cases. Gym’s and other high-risk businesses will have to close. Tier-3 closures could last up to 6 months if the rate of COVID-19 infections does not drop.
Households under tier-3 lockdown will only be allowed to form a ‘household bubble’ with one other household. Schools and Universities will remain open.
Travel restrictions in and out of tier-3 areas will be put in place. However, it is unknown if police will be used to discourage unnecessary travel, or to put physical restrictions in place.
It is unknown what additional help (other than Sunak’s second round of furlough) will be available to businesses in tier-3 areas.
Liverpool and areas of Manchester and Yorkshire are expected to be amongst the first areas to face a tier-3 local lockdown. Local leaders have been attempting to come to a deal with the government over the measures which will be imposed; Although, the overall feeling within local leaders is that the government are trying to go it alone.
On Sunday, Deputy CMO Jonathan Van-Tam gave the dire warning that the UK is at the ‘tipping point’ in its fight against COVID-19. The last week saw over 100,000 new cases of Coronavirus cases and another worrying jump in hospitalizations and deaths to COVID-19. Drastic action is needed and governments dithering has exhausted what thinking time remains.
Update 12th October – 11.00 – Downing Street briefing.
Deputy Chief Medical Officer Johnathan Van Tam: updated the nation on Coronavirus’s spread through the UK, and current state of the NHS.
Van Tam says that from early September there has been a marked increase in Coronavirus cases. Hospital admissions we see now are related to new COVID-19 cases from three weeks ago.
Van Tam stressed that in the next few weeks there is going to be a marked increase in both COVID-19 hospitalisations AND deaths linked to the new cases we have seen reported in recent weeks. (It takes on average around 3 weeks from being infected and showing symptoms to getting so ill that hospitalisation is required.
Van Tam briefly talked about the demographics, showing that the virus is moving through age ranges and is not restricted to any one age group. Infection rates are highest in people ages 10-19 AND in people age 65 and above.
NHS England director Stephen Powis
Powis briefly talked about the records highs in France and other areas of Europe; The UK is believed to be around 2-3 weeks behind France and Spain in terms of cases and pressure on hospitals. Hospital admissions are rising fastest in areas where infection rates are highest, specifically the North West of England.
Powis reported in the last 4 weeks hospitals in north-west and North-East of England have seen a 4-fold rise in patients; But, the NHS is prepared for the second wave, with a better understanding of the virus, better treatments available and better survivability.
Stephen Powis also stated.
- The NHS has enough PPE to last 4 months.
- To protect staff and patients, NHS staff in high-risk areas will be frequently tested whether they have symptoms or not.
- Sunderland, Manchester and Harrogate Nightengale hospitals are being reactivated.
- There is still no cure or vaccine. This means that as cases rise so will deaths. “The death toll will be too great to bear is nothing is done.”
- It will take a number of weeks until any new restrictions start to show effects.
- Contact your GP if you are ill – “The NHS is here to protect you from ill-health”.
- Greater Manchester is currently the most at-risk area.
Dr Jane Eddlestone- Greater Manchester Consultant in Intensive Care Medicine
Eddlestone gave a brief rundown of the situation in Greater Manchester; where hospitals have seen a 3-fold increase in people requiring intensive care and 8-fold increase patients in general. This is starting to affect the care given to non-COVID patients as 35% of beds are taken up by COVID-19 patients
Dr Eddleston ended by pleading “I ask you all to respect the virus”.
This is the first of many statements today – check back for updates!