Even Chris Whitty thinks it’s safe to open up

Our uber-cautious chief medical officer says hospitals can now cope with Covid.

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Topics Politics Science & Tech UK

Over the past year and a half of lockdown, we have all grown used to the sight of Chris Whitty and his slides of doom at the Covid press conferences. The chief medical officer has been a consistent voice of caution throughout the pandemic. But now even he thinks it is safe to end the restrictions and go back to normal.

Speaking to the cabinet on Monday, Whitty explained that the recent rise in Covid cases, caused by the Delta variant, have not led to the kind of increase in hospitalisations we experienced in earlier waves. The vaccination programme has finally broken the link between infections and hospitalisations. And this means, in Whitty’s view, that hospitals can now cope with Covid, even if all the restrictions are lifted.

He is right. Covid is not going anywhere, but it no longer poses the kind of threat it once did – even with the emergence of more transmissible variants. There is no good reason for the restrictions to continue. Nearly 33million Britons are fully vaccinated. Most of the population is protected against the virus. We have nothing to fear from opening up for good.

Picture by: Getty.

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