Topic: [The Guardian] Revealed: the inside story of the UK's Covid-19 crisis  (Read 188 times)

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Revealed: the inside story of the UK's Covid-19 crisis

How herd immunity and delayed lockdown hampered efforts to contain the spread of coronavirus

In common with the many thousands of people whose lives have suddenly been devastated by Covid-19, Ken Sazuze cannot know exactly when the coronavirus landed on his family and wreaked its terrible damage. His wife, Elsie, was 44, a much-loved nurse, mother to their children, Anna, 16, and Andrew, 22; she was his soulmate and best friend, a “genuine person,” he says. Elsie died on 8 April, on a ventilator, in Birmingham’s Good Hope hospital.

Ken believes she became infected sometime in that eerie, frightening week after Monday 16 March, when Boris Johnson’s government reconsidered its previous light-touch approach, which had envisaged 60% of the population – 40 million people – would become infected, and while many would die, the majority would recover and attain “herd immunity”. That week, although more physical distancing had been advised by Johnson, normal life mostly continued until the compulsory lockdown; pubs, restaurants and gyms stayed open, as did schools, until Friday 20 March. Sazuze, who served 10 years in the British army before studying to be a nurse himself, says he “never liked that herd immunity idea”.

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