Express & Star comment: Country facing critical two weeks

The country faces a critical two weeks in its fight against Covid-19.

Covid-19 signage
Covid-19 signage

By the end of that period, health officials will be able to gauge the impact of the latest national lockdown.

If cases have continued to rise, then the Government will be left with little alternative than to give MPs a vote on extending the measures.

At this moment in time cases are hurtling upwards. Infection rates across parts of the region have risen by a third in recent weeks, and hospital beds are starting to fill up at an alarming rate.

This is particularly worrying, bearing in mind that one in every four patients that enters hospital with coronavirus dies.

While it has not yet reached the levels seen during the peak of the first wave of the pandemic in April, the death rate is also escalating.

Extending the lockdown is something that no MP wants to do, but if it comes down to saving lives, then many of them will consider it a price worth paying.

And none of them are doubting that that price will be a high one indeed.

The focus of the NHS on Covid means that other treatments are way behind schedule, with thousands of procedures that were cancelled earlier in the year still yet to take place.

Despite billions of pounds in Government assistance, businesses are suffering, with the hospitality industry in particular on its very last legs.

It is fully understandable why a growing number of MPs consider there is a real danger that the cure we are prescribing runs the risk of being worse than the disease itself.

There is however, a reason to believe that cases will start to fall.

Liverpool, which was one of the first places in the country to be placed under strict Tier 3 restrictions, has seen its infection rate slashed by half over the past week.

This provides evidence that the tiers system was working before it was suspended for the national lockdown.

Lets hope Ministers eventually settle on a common sense approach.

There is no point in locking down regions where levels of contagion are low.

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