Monday 21st September – Briefings

There have been significant Press conferences this morning.

Chief Scientific Officer of the United Kingdom, Sir Patrick Vallance says measures must be taken to stop the spread of Covid-19.

The UK could see 50,000 new coronavirus cases a day by mid-October without further restrictions that “would be expected to lead to about 200 deaths per day” a month after that.

Sir Patrick stressed the figures given were not a prediction, but added: “At the moment we think the epidemic is doubling roughly every seven days. The challenge, therefore, is to make sure the doubling time does not stay at seven days. That requires speed, it requires action and it requires enough in order to be able to bring that down.”

Prof Whitty, Chief Medical Officer (CMO) for England added that if cases continued to double every seven days as Sir Patrick had set out, then the UK could “quickly move from really quite small numbers to really very large numbers because of that exponential process”. “So we have, in a bad sense, literally turned a corner, although only relatively recently,” he said.

Scotland’s health secretary Jeane Freeman says curbs that could last six months are “more realistic” than ones lasting weeks

The minister says household-to-household transmission remains the “principal area of transmission”.