The UK government’s latest pandemic plan involves recklessly exposing millions of people to the acute and long-term effects of the massive infection, experts warn. The BMJ today.
One strategy that chooses mass infection in young people now over vaccination in order to achieve greater population immunity to protect the vulnerable in winter is “unethical and unscientific,” say Dr. Deepti Gurdasani and his colleagues.
Instead of allowing infections to increase, they urge the government to take urgent steps to inform and protect the public and prepare for the fall.
These include outlining a long-term strategy for pandemic control, maintaining basic measures such as masks and physical distancing until cases return to low levels, investing in jobs, schools and public transport to make them safer and provide the means to conduct extensive testing and assistance for isolated people.
He prime ministerThe argument that it is better to accept the massive infection now than to postpone it until winter, when “the virus has an advantage” is deeply flawed and misleading, they write. In contrast, this strategy will place around 48% of the population (including children) who are not yet fully vaccinated, including the clinically vulnerable and those with compromised immune systems, at an unacceptable risk.
This approach already exerts intense pressure on the struggle health services and will favor many preventable deaths and long-term illnesses. It also provides a fertile environment for the selection of escape variants that could have huge consequences for the UK and countries around the world.
They point out that more than 1,000 scientists have already signed a letter to The Lancet to explain why allowing mass infection this summer is a “dangerous and unethical experiment.” The British Medical Association, the directors of public health, the SAGE, the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges, the Royal College of Nursing and NHS leaders have highlighted the dangers inherent in allowing too infection.
Opening the UK even further is considered ‘freedom day’, but for too many people, the removal of mandatory measures, such as the use of masks and physical distancing, restricts freedom.
This is likely to be reinforced, they say public confidence and participation in economic activity. And if government strategy leads us to a new closure, they warn that this could have an even more devastating impact on the economy.
In addition, the public overwhelmingly supports sensible public health measures, such as masking inside. “This makes us wonder why dangerous public health decisions have been made that are neither in the public interest nor in line with public sentiment amid a furious pandemic,” they write.
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British Medical Journal
Citation: Government’s latest pandemic plan recklessly exposes millions to massive infection (2021, July 15) recovered on July 15, 2021 at https://medicalxpress.com/news/2021-07-latest-pandemic -recklessly-exposes-millions.html
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