A national new lockdown could be imposed again, health secretary Matt Hancock has said.
Hancock says he isn’t ruling out a second national lockdown.
Reports suggested the government could impose a short-term lockdown across the nation.
And today (September 18), Matt Hancock addressed the rumours.
Matt Hancock on new national lockdown
He told Sky News’s Kay Burley: “The last line of defence is full national action and I don’t want to see that, but we will do whatever is necessary to keep people safe in a very difficult pandemic.
“It isn’t something that we ever take off the table but it isn’t something that we want to see either, it is the last line of defence.
The country once again needs to come together and recognise there is a serious challenge.
“But what I would say this morning is the country once again needs to come together and recognise there is a serious challenge.
Hancock says the virus is ‘accelerating’
“The virus is accelerating. Unfortunately it isn’t just cases increasing, it’s also the number of people ending up in hospital increasing.”
It has been reported that the government has been advised to enforce a two-week national lockdown in October.
This comes days after much of the North East has been put in a new local lockdown.
He said further announcements will be made today.
He urges the public to ‘come together’
It is being widely reported that Lancashire will go into lockdown within days.
Hancock added: “We do have to recognise that the number of cases is rising and we do have to act because we know, especially from looking at other countries, that inexorably leads to more hospitalisations and sadly more deaths.
“And that is what we want to minimise and we want to protect people’s livelihoods at the same time.”
When Burley asked him to confirm if a second national lockdown is in the works, he said: “Sometimes we can’t say exactly what the future holds because we’re in a pandemic.
“But I can give this hope. If everybody follows the rule of six and follows self-isolation if they have tested positive or if they have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive, and if everybody in the local lockdown areas follows the rules near them, then we can control this virus together.
“But only by the country pulling together.”
Ministers are reportedly considering a short-term two week national lockdown.
This is being deemed a “circuit-breaker” lockdown in a bid to quickly flatten the curve.
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