The UK could follow in the footsteps of some of its European neighbours by putting in place restrictions on unvaccinated people. A public health expert has warned that the introduction of these lockdown-style restrictions could become inevitable as government looks for ways to contain a possible fourth wave of infections.
It Might Come to That
Some countries on the continent have introduced or are in the process of introducing new measures targeted at people who are yet to get jabbed.
More than two million unvaccinated people in Austria have been placed under a 10-day lockdown, while those in the Czech Republic will not be allowed to attend public events from Monday. The Netherlands and Ireland announced partial lockdowns and curfews as the virus continues to spread.
As Germany prepares to implement similar measures, a former regional director of public health for the North West of England, Pro. John Ashton, said it ‘may come to that’ in the UK as well. Speaking to the lockdown of the unvaccinated in Austria on Good Morning Britain, Prof. Ashton said:
I fear that it might come to that. There are still millions of people who are not double vaccinated in the UK. And that’s a problem because the virus is still circulating, and while the virus is circulating, there is the potential for more mutations.
He also believes that getting more young vaccinated before Christmas would go a long way to contain the spread of the virus around that time, when social gatherings are expected to increase.
But we really should be getting our secondary school kids with second vaccines before Christmas, we should be beginning to vaccinate primary school children.
Not There Yet
However, a member of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) Professor Neil Ferguson, said the UK has a bit of an advantage in containing the virus than its European neighbours.
He explained that the high level of immunity among the British population following months of high virus prevalence and the speedy rollout of booster jabs puts the country in a ‘different situation’.
We’re in a very different situation from other European countries at the moment. It’s unlikely we’ll get anything close to last year’s catastrophic winter wave at this point. We can’t be complacent, but I don’t think we’ll be in the situation as the Netherlands.