C.Child vaccinations between the ages of 5 and 11 years, the need to wear a mask and the effectiveness of booster vaccinations were the topics of a virtual panel of experts.
The discussion was moderated by The independents Science correspondent Samuel Lovett as part of our virtual series of events.
The event entitled “Is the British strategy against? Covid the right thing?’ took place online yesterday (November 25th) and was a discussion between Irene Petersen, Professor of Epidemiology and Health Informatics at UCL, London, Peter English, Retired Advisor on Communicable Disease Control and former Chair of the BMA Public Health Medicine Committee Simon Hodes , a General Practitioner in Watford.
As we near winter, concerns are surfacing about current Covid infection rates and the number of daily deaths in the UK.
Those concerns only grew this week when UK health officials sounded the alarm on Thursday evening about variant B.1.1.529, which has the potential to bypass immunity built up by vaccination or previous infection.
But what did the experts say about the current situation?
Watch the full length event in the video below
The new variant has resulted in South Africa, Namibia, Lesotho, Botswana, Eswatini and Zimbabwe all being put on the Red List, which means that hotel quarantine is again required for travelers from these countries to the UK.
Jenny Harries, General Manager of the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA), says: “This is the most significant variant that we have come across and there is urgent research to find out more about its transmissibility, severity and susceptibility to vaccination.”
The government is currently sticking to its Plan A to rely on the Covid vaccines and booster vaccinations to curb the number of infections. Last month, however, hospital and doctor heads urged ministers to move on to Plan B – wearing masks, Covid passports for crowded events, and working from home – to avert an impending disaster for the NHS.