Matt Hancock defends Prime Minister's bicycle ride 7 miles from home

As Health Secretary Matt Hancock issued a warning to those in Tier 4 areas to take the matter seriously he said that if the virus cannot be stopped from spreading.  Tier 4 could be with us for “at least a couple of months”.

Health Secretary issues warning that Tier 4 could last months: He has also urged people within Tier 4 to “act as if they already have the virus.” His warning has come straight off the back of the Prime Minister’s press statement on Friday. Which said that people in the South East of England and London would be subjected to “stay at home” orders as the region saw infection rates soar.

Hancock told Sky News “What is really important is that people not only follow the new rules but everybody in a Tier 4 area acts as if you have the virus to stop spreading it to other people.” During the interview he also warned that cases were rising rapidly. And that strict social distancing measures could be in place “for months”. He went on to add “All of the different measures we have in place, we need more of them to control the spread of the new variant than we did to control the spread of the old variant.

That is the fundamental problem. “We know that because we know that in November that in the areas where this new variant started, in Kent, the cases carried on rising whereas in the rest of the country the November lockdown worked very effectively. It is an enormous challenge, until we can get the vaccine rolled out to protect people. This is what we face over the next couple of months.”

He did however say that the vaccine programme is gathering momentum now with 350,000 people already vaccinated and the plan was to have over half a million vaccinations done by the end of the week. His statement came after a warnng that a full vaccine rollout could be 4 months away. Chairman of the BMA council, Dr Chaand Nagpaul,said of the timescale “It will take, unfortunately, three to four months for enough of the population to be vaccinated.

Therefore there’s light at the end of the tunnel. I hope people, the public, can understand and be patient, carrying on being responsible, follow the rules and measures because we will, if all goes well, in a few months, be able to mix with family, friends and relatives.”


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