Dr Owain Williams By: Dr Owain Williams
Lecturer in IR and Human Security
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05 Mar 2020 : Take it on the chin

First fatality in UK reported yesterday. A woman with pre-exiting conditions.

Johnson really is piece of work. I think this will come back too haunt him, I certainly hope it does. It is clear that the strategy is some form of herd immunity, which is just crazy. Got this exchange today at work and want to paint it on the side of his house. Typically banal exchange in which there lies a real dangerous mind, reckless and useless.

Philip Schofield: Is the delay essentially trying to spread this out so it doesn’t all happen at once and overwhelm the NHS, and that you can actually delay it into perhaps the summer when it’s a little bit quieter and the ordinary flu might have died down a wee bit, is that what you’re doing?

Boris Johnson: Well it’s a very, very important question, and that’s where a lot of the debate has been and one of the theories is, that perhaps you could take it on the chin, take it all in one go and allow the disease, as it were, to move through the population, without taking as many draconian measures. I think we need to strike a balance, I think it is very important, we’ve got a fantastic NHS, we will give them all the support that they need, we will make sure that they have all preparations, all the kit that they need for us to get through it. But I think it would be better if we take all the measures that we can now to stop the peak of the disease being as difficult for the NHS as it might be, I think there are things that we may be able to do.

After 10 years of austerity and piecemeal privatisation it is clear that the NHS will not cope with what is happening in Northern Italy. I have been tweeting about how current case fatality estimates are really based on people needing acute care receiving treatment (I’m not really 100% on this). More seriously for me and Kylie, Australia has today banned travellers from China, Iran and South Korea. Starting to really worry about getting back on 28th. Had the day off and made my Szechaun tofu dish. Phoned mam and dad and they are still going shopping and all. Starting to really warn them about social contact. Dad is more concerned about getting his phone to work. Martin is beginning to self-isolate in Umbria as North Italy is starting (has started?) to lock down completely.

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