The United Kingdom’s top health official said Friday that it’s not clear if the country will mandate another COVID-19 lockdown due to a surge in cases across the UK and Europe.
“I can’t give you that answer,” Health Secretary Matt Hancock said, according to Reuters. He noted that the number of infected persons being hospitalized “is doubling every eight days.”
Officials said that about 6,000 cases were reported Friday.
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the second wave of COVID-19 cases is now unstoppable.
“We are now seeing a second wave coming in … It is absolutely, I’m afraid, inevitable, that we will see it in this country,” Johnson said, according to the news agency. When he was asked about a lockdown, he demurred, saying: “I don’t want to get into a second national lockdown at all.”
Johnson said he will not rule out more lockdowns in the future.
“When you look at what is happening, you’ve got to wonder whether we need to go further than the rule of six that we brought in on Monday,” he said in reference to a ban on gatherings of more than six people.
Johnson earlier this week told Sky News that a second lockdown would be a disaster for the UK economy.
The UK imposed new virus regulations on the North East area on Friday, and will impose restrictions on the North West, Midlands, and West Yorkshire areas from Tuesday next week.
The speculation comes as the World Health Organization (WHO) warned that CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus cases are increasing dramatically across Europe.
“Weekly cases have now exceeded those reported when the pandemic first peaked in Europe in March,” WHO’s Dr. Hans Kluge said in a news conference. “Last week, the region’s weekly tally exceeded 300,000 patients.”
“In the spring and early summer we were able to see the impact of strict lockdown measures. Our efforts, our sacrifices, paid off. In June cases hit an all-time low. The September case numbers, however, should serve as a wake-up call for all of us,” he said. “Although these numbers reflect more comprehensive testing, it also shows alarming rates of transmission across the region.”
France, for example, has reported about 10,000 cases of the CCP virus per day.