Chris Whitty Admits Virus in Retreat Before Lockdown

By 22 July 2020

Chris Whitty appeared before the House of Commons Heath Committee yesterday and admitted that the lockdown may not have been necessary after all. According to the Times

The coronavirus epidemic was probably already in retreat before full lockdown was imposed, the Chief Medical Officer for England has said as he insisted there was no “huge delay” in government action.

Interestingly, he put a different spin on Sir Patrick Vallance’s testimony to the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee last Thursday, which was widely interpreted as Sir Patrick claiming Sage had advised the Government to lock down a weak earlier than it did.

Last week Sir Patrick Vallance, the government’s Chief Scientific Adviser, said that Sage had advised on March 16 that more draconian measures were needed. Professor Whitty said today that Sir Patrick had not been referring to full legal lockdown but the advice on avoiding needless travel and socialising that Mr Johnson issued that day.

“Quite a lot changed that led to R going below one well before, or to some extent before, March 23”, when full lockdown was imposed, Professor Whitty said.