The British government in consultation with epidemiologist and other specialists has decided not to go down the restrictive line adopted by Spain and other southern European nations
The British way is not to take restrictive controls, but let the virus spread to infect about 80% of the population. The Chief Medical Officer for England Chris Witty has said that it will eventually affect 80% of the population. The vast majority of people will have a mild illness, though overall it is thought there could be a 1% fatality rate.
They are saying ” you are going to get it anyway so might as well be sooner rather than later” That way you can build up population immunity.
Serious illness will be mostly confined to the elderly and those with heart or lung disease,who are diabetic or have immunodeficiency.
The evidence from the swine flu epidemic of 2009 is that is is impossible to contain the virus as it will spread anyway. All you can do is slow its spread down so you can get healthcare provision in place.
Epidemiologist Professor John Watkins of Public Health Wales has criticised the media and gunpoint quarantine hyping up the situation.
The NHS is to stop testing people with mild symptoms outside hospital as there is no treatment , unlike influenza where there is Tamiflu and Relenza. The plan is to recruit the after hours GP provider to provide monitoring of patients at home mainly by phone 24/7 and refer to hospital people who deteriorate.
NHS advise for people with symptoms of fever and a new continuous cough is to stay at home until 5 days after they are better and seek medical advise on 111 if you cannot cope or feel seriously ill.
People are very scared of Covid-19 virus with its 1% mortality rate. But that means 99% of people who get the virus survive. In fact it is about the same mortality as heart bypass surgery in the best centres. The mortality rate of Covid-19 does rise in people over 60 and more so with chronic medical conditions but so does the mortality of surgery.
The press likes to show these pictures of dozens of people in ICU in China, but if you imagine thousands of people all needing heart bypass surgery at once. It puts it into perspective.
If a lot of people over 60 all needed bypass surgery at once, would you close all schools, businesses and plunge the country into economic crisis ?
The outbreak in China has been controlled now, with only a handful new cases every day in Hubei province. the worst affected area. This was achieved by 10 weeks of lock-down from 31st Dec 2019. I hope lock-down doesn’t continue for that long in Spain.