It’s all feeling a lot more relaxed than it was, isn’t it? We are meeting our friends, we’re going out for meals and going into pubs. We are holidaying in the UK; some of us are even venturing abroad. For many of us, there is a sense that the corner has been turned and life can, gradually, get back to normal.
Yet some people are still very apprehensive, even fearful, of society opening up post-Covid. These include people with underlying health conditions or who have other high risk factors. They may be elderly. They may have lost someone to coronavirus. For some people it is a manifestation of an underlying mental health or anxiety problem.
Sometimes, being able to check the facts for yourself helps. There are places you can go to check local and national data. You can be provided with a comparison of that local data to the national average. The Coronavirus in the UK Daily Summary Page on gov.uk does just that. The CovidLiveUK webpage does a similar thing, plotting the data on a map. This page also gives updated figures on cases and deaths. Live data from today shows that the death rate overall sits at 2% of cases.
Our experience so far deters us from wholesale commitment to thinking that things will be okay now. What we read and hear in the media can seem confusing. The epidemiologists remain circumspect about another wave of infections. Meanwhile, there is general recognition that the high levels of vaccination in the UK should counter a return to the mortality rates seen this and last year. It is accepted by the experts that the risk of serious or fatal infection with Sars-Cov2 has dropped considerably. However, as I was reviewing this article prior to publishing today, I noticed a news story on Sky saying that last week, the UK recorded the highest number of coronavirus deaths since March this year.
It’s okay to practice caution if you are feeling apprehensive. Wear masks in crowded areas. It is still common to see people in supermarkets and small shops doing just that. It is the same on public transport. It is okay to go at your own pace. Continue to use hand sanitiser. Limit where you go and whom you meet. What is important is that we respect other’s decisions in these matters alongside our own. One of the emotions that seems to have spread across society as a result of the pandemic is people being more aware of each others’ feelings and being kinder to each other. It will be great if that can be maintained as we gradually emerge from the worst effects of the pandemic.
‘UK passes four Covid-19 tests to ease lockdown & will AVOID third wave, says Whitty’ on The Sun on YouTube. This is a broadcast from May 2021 but it serves to remind of the reasons restrictions are being lifted at this time
‘COVID-19: UK records highest total of weekly coronavirus-related deaths since March’ by Alexa Phillips on sky.com
‘The freedom we’re enjoying after lockdown is fragile. It’ll disintegrate if we keep ignoring Covid protocols’ by Stefano Hatfield on inews.co.uk
‘Anxiety Of The Clinically Vulnerable As Restrictions Ease’ by Care first via Staff Health & Wellbeing website
‘Travelling Safely’ by Care first via the Staff Health & Wellbeing website
‘Travelling With Unvaccinated Children and How To Manage The Risks’ by Care first via Staff Health & Wellbeing website
‘People not getting tested for Covid to avoid self-isolation, expert suggests’ by Patrick Daly on standard.co.uk
‘I’m an epidemiologist. Here’s what I got wrong about covid’ by Eleanor Murray on The Washington Post via msn.com
‘UK could see a ‘large’ Covid wave in autumn, Professor Neil Ferguson warn’ by Abbianca Makoni on standard.co.uk; Professor Ferguson qualifies this by emphasising the protective effects of vaccination
‘The world is nowhere near the end of the Covid pandemic, says famed epidemiologist Larry Brilliant’ by Yen Nee Lee on cnbc.com