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Whitty warns pandemic heading towards its 'most dangerous time'

Professor Whitty has urged people to stay at home and avoid unnecessary contact with other people. Whitty told the BBC, "This is everybody's problem. Any single unnecessary contact you have with someone is a potential link in a chain of transmission that will lead to a vulnerable person."

Zara Tunnicliffe
· 2 min read

Professor Whitty has urged people to stay at home and avoid unnecessary contact with other people. Whitty told the BBC, "This is everybody's problem. Any single unnecessary contact you have with someone is a potential link in a chain of transmission that will lead to a vulnerable person."

"Anybody who is not shocked" by the figures being published, he said, "has not understood this at all."

He continued to say that "this is an appalling situation." 

Speaking to the BBC, Health Secretary Matt Hancock echoed Whitty’s concerns saying, "Every time you try to flex the rules that could be fatal" and to stay at home was the "most important thing we can do collectively as a society".

Ministers have hosted meetings to talk about how to enforce the restrictions more strongly. 

Seven mass vaccination centres are scheduled to open this week as thousands more people are due to receive their jabs. 

The government wants to vaccinate 15 million people by the middle of February. This group includes those over 70 years old, those shielding and healthcare, and other frontline workers. 

According to Whitty, there are currently over 30,000 patients in NHS hospitals and medical care facilities who have the virus. This has greatly surpassed the peak of 18,000 seen in April during the initial outbreak. 

On Sunday, Hancock reported that around 2 million people in the UK had been vaccinated. Approximately 200,000 people per day are receiving the first dose of the vaccine.

The government is also due to start disclosing the number of vaccinations administered each day. This will be released alongside more detailed vaccination plan, with the UK now having seen more than 80,000 deaths caused by Covid-19 within 28 days of a positive test since the start of the pandemic. 

In Surrey, which currently has one of the highest infection rates in England, a temporary mortuary has had to open on account of facilities in hospitals reaching capacity. There are currently nearly 200 bodies being stored at the site. The emergency site was previously a military hospital, and other local authorities told the BBC they expect to establish other similar sites soon.

Zara Tunnicliffe

Zara Tunnicliffe

Writing has allowed Zara to learn about topics and explore further those that interest her. Zara creates a range promotional copy for events as well as content for a variety of websites and social media platforms. Zara always look forward to researching interesting topics and sharing them with others through her writing.