Devi Sridhar
+ Your AuthorsArchive @devisridhar Professor & Chair of Global Public Health, @EdinburghUni Medical School. Director of @GlobalHealthGP. Health governance, financing, policy, systems & security. Jul. 08, 2020 1 min read

I look at what’s happening in several U.S. states including my home state Florida; I look at Israel and Spain and Iran and...and I know that everyone wants the economy to go full steam ahead in the UK. But I fear we will be in another lockdown within months, if not weeks.

Why would the UK be any different? This is what I asked myself also on Feb & March when the UK stayed fully open while others moved in opposite direction. Eliminate the virus over the summer then open up safely. Otherwise enter winter & flu season in a dangerous halfway house.

I know the economy is suffering & jobs are being lost. I recognise the toll that lockdown has taken and I’m not ‘pro-lockdown’ at all. In fact my worry is about a second lockdown & how to avoid this happening. Lockdown/release cycles will destroy society & the economy.

Gov’ts need to look ahead 6-8 months and make a plan, make a strategy for how to protect their residents lives & jobs & how they will weather the storm. Encouraging people to pretend the virus is gone & to celebrate the end of the pandemic is negligent. 

Tough decisions ahead & can’t have it all without a vaccine. Opening schools, or keeping pubs & bars open. Keeping borders largely closed or having free movement & constant outbreaks. Saying popular things like ‘eat out & party’ or prioritising those shielding & vulnerable.

Having studied outbreaks in poor countries, I look at US & UK and see what a privileged position these countries are in giving their wealth & resources.They can truly protect their residents unlike poor countries which have all the odds stacked against them.Why don’t they do it?

You can follow @devisridhar.


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