Archiv: Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) / New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (NERVTAG) / Covid-O committee


28.02.2021 - 08:22 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

What IS the truth about Covid deaths? Grieving relatives along with MPs and top medics demand inquiry as families reveal MORE loved ones they believe were wrongly certified as virus victims

Grieving families last night said deaths had been wrongly certified as Covid-19.

Demanding an inquiry, top medical experts and MPs also insisted they were ‘certain’ that too many fatalities were being blamed on the virus.

One funeral director said it was ‘a national scandal’. The claims are part of a Daily Mail investigation that raises serious questions over the spiralling death toll.

23.02.2021 - 10:10 [ Telegraph.co.uk ]

We surrendered our freedom to lockdown – the state must never hold such control over our lives again

We know that the trajectory of the virus has been indistinguishable between North Dakota (with masks and distancing in restaurants) and South Dakota (without restrictions). We know that California, which locked down and closed schools, seems to have fared worse than Florida, which did not. We can see that the picture in Belgium with its hard lockdowns has now converged with that in Sweden which famously took a voluntary approach. Similarly, the ‘second wave’ trajectory in Japan is remarkably similar to that of the UK.

I know, I know, fascinating stuff…. but let’s leave all that for the public inquiry.

23.02.2021 - 10:03 [ theSun.co.uk ]

DEADLY DATA: Plan to lift lockdown by Easter ‘was canned after Sage scientists warned it would cause 91,000 more deaths

Models predicted it would lead to nearly 60,000 Covid patients in hospital by June, compared to last month’s high of 39,000.

Chief Scientific Adviser Sir Patrick Vallance spoke of his support for the gradual approach taken by PM Boris Johnson, saying: „The sooner you open up everything, the higher the risk of a bigger resurgence.

„The slower you do it, the better.“

23.02.2021 - 06:05 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Covid cases are UP for first time in SIX WEEKS with 10,641 new infections while deaths tumble to 178 in lowest toll since December 13 – and Britain dishes out just 150,000 vaccines in worst performance since inoculation drive started

– Department of Health figures show infections are 9 per cent up on last Monday, when 9,765 were declared
– But laboratory-confirmed coronavirus fatalities have dropped by almost a quarter, from 230 last Monday
– Britain dished out 150,000 vaccines yesterday, in worst daily toll since roll-out began to speed up last month

23.02.2021 - 06:03 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Boris, Whitty and Vallance dismiss Tory and business fury at ultra-cautious lockdown ‚roadmap‘ saying the country wants ‚certainty not urgency‘ – with shops, salons and drinks outside from April 12 but no foreign travel before mid-MAY or hugs until June

Social distancing rules will stay in force until June 21 at the minimum, with a government review to decide their future after that. The decision means that grandparents face months of waiting before they can hug their grandchildren – even though millions have already been vaccinated.

23.02.2021 - 06:01 [ Tagesschau.de ]

Corona-Lockerungen in England: Auf der „Einbahnstraße in Richtung Freiheit“

Die Kurve der Neuinfektionen geht in Großbritannien langsam, aber dennoch deutlich zurück, 124 neue Fälle pro 100.000 Einwohner waren es in den vergangen sieben Tagen. Immerhin schon 17 Millionen Menschen erhielten eine erste Corona-Impfdosis.

22.02.2021 - 15:37 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Tories demand ‚irreversible‘ lockdown easing and slam Boris for moving too slowly as he prepares to unveil ‚roadmap‘ with ALL schools to return on March 8 and Rule of Six back by April – but shops, salons and pubs face waiting MONTHS

The PM is set to reveal his ‚roadmap‘ in a statement to the Commons this afternoon once it is rubber-stamped by Cabinet, after scientists seemingly won the battle for a slow approach regardless of the surging vaccination drive.

17.02.2021 - 16:45 [ Jasmine the European Cat / Twitter ]

But the Oxford/AstraZeneca team, which uses more traditional viral vector technology, says that while it can make a new formulation in days, it takes much longer to produce.

(09.02.2021)

It expects to have a vaccine designed to address the variant discovered in South Africa ready by autumn.

17.02.2021 - 16:35 [ usatodaysun.com ]

AstraZeneca expects updated COVID-19 vaccine by autumn

(14.02.2021)

The Anglo-Swedish company, which makes a vaccine developed by the University of Oxford, said it is working with the university’s scientists to adapt the shot to combat new variants.

17.02.2021 - 16:31 [ MSN.com ]

Masks and social distancing could stay until AUTUMN at earliest – sources

(12.02.2021)

SAGE member Professor John Edmunds painted a darker picture and suggested the measures could last even longer.

He told ITV’s Peston face masks could be required „probably forever“ if COVID-19 becomes endemic in the UK.

15.02.2021 - 06:09 [ Telegraph.co.uk ]

Ministers must never again be free to impose crippling restrictions without proper scrutiny

Drawing on the Civil Contingencies Act, measures would also need Parliamentary approval before coming into effect (unless too urgent – in which case validity would be provisional) and they would expire after no more than 30 days unless renewed, so that in the event of another pandemic, restrictions could not be imposed for months on end without proper scrutiny.

15.02.2021 - 05:53 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Single jabs of Covid vaccine are providing 67% protection against infections, data reveals as experts say delaying second dose is ‚paying off‘

Prof Spector said that he no longer watched the Government’s daily briefings as he felt the statistics were not presented in context, particularly the death rates.

He said: ‚It’s very sad people die of anything. Yesterday around 600 people died of Covid but on a normal day in February 1,500 people die of heart disease, strokes, cancer etc or the flu.

‚This has got a lot of people extremely anxious and are petrified to leave their homes and may have problems coming out if we do not put those statistics into context.

‚People are dying of Covid but people die of other things. I would like to see less fear-mongering.‘

13.02.2021 - 19:21 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Boris says he’s ‚optimistic‘ about easing lockdown starting with schools in March and we will ‚learn to live with‘ Covid – as leaked data shows hospitalisations falling much FASTER than expected

Modelling by Sage presented to Downing Street and leaked to The Times predicts hospital admissions and deaths will more than halve over the next month.

Patients battling coronavirus in hospital currently number around 24,000, but this figure is expected to be slashed to around 9,000 by mid-March.

Yesterday 1,908 patients were taken to hospital in the UK, a massive drop in admission rates since the peak in January when around 4,500 were admitted on a single day.

12.02.2021 - 02:24 [ Telegraph.co.uk ]

School return date must be ’signed in blood‘, Boris Johnson told

Rob Halfon, the Tory chairman of the Education Select Committee, told The Telegraph: „We just need to make sure March 8 is signed in blood, not just a line in the sand.“ Mark Harper, the chairman of the Covid Recovery Group, said: „It’s crucial we don’t backslide on this.“

12.02.2021 - 02:14 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Furious Tory MPs say Covid vaccine roll-out is pointless unless UK goes back to normal life soon after SAGE doomsters push back on easing lockdown within weeks and warn we could be wearing masks FOREVER

The Prime Minister has promised to get children back in classrooms by March 8 as part of his ‚route map‘ out of lockdown, which he plans to reveal on Monday, February 22.

12.02.2021 - 02:11 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Powerful ‚Covid O‘ Cabinet committee is set to consider plans for ‚vaccine passports‘ tomorrow amid hopes they could save summer holidays

The critical ‚Covid O‘ Cabinet sub-committee is expected to look at proposals for assembling a system that could loosen restrictions on international travel.

However, there are not expected to be any final decisions – and no date has been mooted for when the arrangements might come into force.

09.02.2021 - 12:34 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Britain could be trapped in lockdown cycles for several YEARS in fight with Covid variants – but staying in tougher measures for longer now will prevent new vaccine-resistant strains, SAGE scientists warn

Evidence suggests the Oxford University vaccine – the main weapon in Britain’s arsenal to combat the virus – does not stop people falling ill with the South African variant, which is feared to be spreading in the community already.

08.02.2021 - 16:20 [ Telegraph.co.uk ]

Exclusive: Alarming new evidence on coronavirus mutation could bring tougher restrictions

(18.12.2020)

Government scientists at the Porton Down laboratory in Wiltshire have been conducting experiments on the new strain, and have confirmed ministers‘ fears about it being far more infectious than the original strain of the virus.

07.02.2021 - 15:30 [ theSun.co.uk ]

LOCKED IN: Restrictions can’t ease until NEXT YEAR due to aggressive mutant Covid strains, warns Sage

They came to their conclusions by modelling what could happen in the next few months under the vaccine rollout, presenting their findings to Sage on January 14.

Researchers at Warwick University wrote in the document, published today: “With the new aggressive covid strain, likely transmission efficacies prove insufficient to prevent further infection outbreaks across the population.

04.02.2021 - 21:49 [ Daily Mail U.K. / Twitter ]

70 Tory MPs demand a route out of lockdown amid fears Boris is being ‚beaten up by the scientists‘

31.01.2021 - 20:06 [ Spectator.co.uk ]

The way ‘Covid deaths’ are being counted is a national scandal

(May 30, 2020)

Normally, two doctors are needed to certify a death, one of whom has been treating the patient or who knows them and has seen them recently. That has changed. For Covid-19 only, the certification can be made by a single doctor, and there is no requirement for them to have examined, or even met, the patient. A video-link consultation in the four weeks prior to death is now felt to be sufficient for death to be attributed to Covid-19.

31.01.2021 - 20:04 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Social distancing may remain in place ALL YEAR: Graphs show how UK could see huge spike in deaths if restrictions are lifted too early as vaccine would have to be 85% effective to stop a surge in fatalities

Grim new graphs lay bare the dilemma facing Boris Johnson’s government as officials try to work out how to reopen the country without causing a third wave of coronavirus infections, as SAGE recommends keeping social distancing measures in place until 2022.

28.01.2021 - 18:41 [ Desmond Swayne, Member of Parliament ]

Demoralising the NHS?

(17.01.2021)

I have been criticised by a family doctor on the grounds that a question I put to the PM in Parliament was ‘demoralising for NHS staff’.
I am at a loss as to how this could be the case.
The question to the PM was this:
“Pubs cannot compete with supermarkets for off-sales. Even within a household, people cannot play tennis or golf. Notwithstanding the assault on liberty and livelihoods, why are the regulations pervaded by a pettifogging malice?”

28.01.2021 - 17:09 [ Sky.com ]

COVID-19: Tory MP Sir Desmond Swayne urged anti-vaxxers to ‚persist‘ against COVID restrictions

A senior Conservative MP urged anti-vaccination campaigners to keep going with their fight against government restrictions and told them NHS capacity figures were being „manipulated“ to exaggerate the scale of coronavirus, Sky News can reveal.

28.01.2021 - 16:21 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Vaccines WILL limit the spread of coronavirus – but we won’t know by how much until mid-February, experts say

Another burning question which will determine how gung-ho ministers can be with easing restriction is to what extent the vaccines stop people from spreading Covid.

The Government has commissioned a study to investigate the vaccines and their role on transmission, which is being overseen by Public Health England. It is focused on frontline healthcare workers who’ve been jabbed.

28.01.2021 - 16:19 [ Sky News ]

COVID-19: PM criticised for being too secretive about scientific advice that led to tiers and lockdowns in England

(08.01.2021)

The MPs also express concern about the government presenting statistics in a misleading way, and urge ministers to take care to maintain public confidence in them.

„There is nothing to fear from openness,“ said Tory MP Greg Clark, who chairs the committee.

23.01.2021 - 09:05 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Revealed: SAGE warning that says scientists are only 50% sure Kent strain is more deadly in evidence that was handed to ministers just hours before ’scaremongering‘ press conference

A SAGE warning revealing that scientists are only 50% sure the Kent strain of coronavirus could be more deadly was handed to ministers just hours before last night’s ’scare-mongering‘ press conference, it has been revealed.

Ministers were only informed about the development yesterday morning after scientists on the New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (Nervtag), a subcommittee of Sage, discussed the issue on Thursday.

22.01.2021 - 20:42 [ Spectator.co.uk ]

The way ‘Covid deaths’ are being counted is a national scandal

(May 30, 2020)

Normally, two doctors are needed to certify a death, one of whom has been treating the patient or who knows them and has seen them recently. That has changed. For Covid-19 only, the certification can be made by a single doctor, and there is no requirement for them to have examined, or even met, the patient. A video-link consultation in the four weeks prior to death is now felt to be sufficient for death to be attributed to Covid-19.

22.01.2021 - 20:30 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Boris Johnson, Chris Whitty and Patrick Vallance make shock claim the Kent mutant coronavirus MIGHT be 30-40% more deadly but provide no evidence at all – as Covid cases fall AGAIN by 30% to 40,261 and R number drops below 1

Boris Johnson and his top scientific advisers tonight sensationally claimed the Kent coronavirus variant could be up to 40 per cent deadlier – but sparked fury by not providing the public any evidence for their doom-mongering.

Critics argued No10’s bold claim – based on findings by three academic groups – were reminiscent of ‚Project Fear‘, accusing ministers of managing to find a ’new twist‘ in Britain’s crisis whenever hopes are raised that lockdown could be eased.

17.01.2021 - 17:35 [ John Crace / theGuardian.com ]

In these grim times we all need a saviour and right now it is Chris Whitty

(11.01.2021)

Cometh the hour, cometh the man. In these exceptionally grim times we’re all – Boris Johnson included – looking for a saviour to rise from these streets. And right now that salvation appears to be the England’s chief medical officer, Chris Whitty. Just about the only person left whom anyone can trust to tell the country the naked truth about coronavirus.

17.01.2021 - 17:25 [ Spectator.co.uk ]

The way ‘Covid deaths’ are being counted is a national scandal

(30.05.2020)

Normally, two doctors are needed to certify a death, one of whom has been treating the patient or who knows them and has seen them recently. That has changed. For Covid-19 only, the certification can be made by a single doctor, and there is no requirement for them to have examined, or even met, the patient. A video-link consultation in the four weeks prior to death is now felt to be sufficient for death to be attributed to Covid-19.

17.01.2021 - 17:15 [ Neil O'Brien / theGuardian.com ]

I’d love to ignore ‘Covid sceptics’ and their tall tales. But they make a splash and have no shame

They rubbished those who knew what they were talking about. Professors Chris Whitty and Patrick Vallance were “Messrs Doom and Gloom”, “fear-mongering” and “self-serving”. That Whitty and Jonathan Van-Tam used their tiny amount of spare time to volunteer in hospitals suggests that’s not true. Now, as the death toll still rises, the same people crawl from the woodwork to demand we lift all restrictions as soon as the most vulnerable are vaccinated.

17.01.2021 - 17:03 [ BMJ.com ]

Covid-19: the problems with case counting

(03 September 2020)

At the moment it seems that a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) positive result is the only criterion required for a case to be recognised.

“In any other disease we would have a clearly defined specification that would usually involve signs, symptoms, and a test result,” says Carl Heneghan, director of the Centre for Evidence Based Medicine at the University of Oxford and the editor of BMJ Evidence-Based Medicine. “We are moving into a biotech world where the norms of clinical reasoning are going out of the window. A PCR test does not equal covid-19; it should not, but in some definitions it does.”

14.01.2021 - 08:56 [ Spectator.co.uk ]

The way ‘Covid deaths’ are being counted is a national scandal

(30.05.2020)

Normally, two doctors are needed to certify a death, one of whom has been treating the patient or who knows them and has seen them recently. That has changed. For Covid-19 only, the certification can be made by a single doctor, and there is no requirement for them to have examined, or even met, the patient. A video-link consultation in the four weeks prior to death is now felt to be sufficient for death to be attributed to Covid-19.

14.01.2021 - 08:54 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Government’s chief scientific advisor Sir Patrick Vallance warns UK is in for ‚a pretty grim period‘ for Covid deaths which won’t reduce ‚for some weeks‘ even if lockdown measures bring infections down – as Britain sees daily record of 1,564 fatalities

Department of Health figures show the daily laboratory-confirmed death toll has risen 50 per cent week-on-week, with data suggesting the total number of coronavirus victims — both suspected and confirmed — has now passed the 100,000 mark.

13.01.2021 - 18:30 [ Nature.com ]

UK science advisers: publish evidence behind COVID vaccine changes

Pfizer–BioNTech say they do not have evidence of what happens to immunity beyond 21 days after the first dose.

(…)

The JCVI adds that: “Protective immunity from the first dose likely lasts for a duration of 12 weeks.” But it has not published evidence to support this.

11.01.2021 - 19:44 [ Telegraph.co.uk ]

People with common colds testing positive for Covid-19 may simply be asymptomatic cases, experts reveal

Trademark symptoms of seasonal flu could be mistaken for symptoms of Covid-19 if the individual tests positive for the virus, it is claimed.

More than eight in ten people who test positive for coronavirus show none of the main symptoms at the time they are tested, a major study by UCL previously revealed.

However, those who test positive when they have cold symptoms may mistake them as being a part of the virus – adding to fears that it is taking a new guise as fresh strains emerge.

11.01.2021 - 08:14 [ DailyMal.co.uk ]

No 10 considers a tougher lockdown ‚with curfews, exercise limits, compulsory masks outside, no support bubbles and nurseries shut‘ if Covid cases keep rising‘ – amid suggestion ‚people may only be allowed to leave home ONCE a week‘

– The Cabinet Office refused to deny that the draconian new laws were incoming after UK’s streets were busy
– They instead pointed to Matt Hancock’s vague statement on rules earlier today: ‚Follow the rules we’ve got‘
– Hancock refused to speculate when asked if harsher measures coming, such as curfews and closing nurseries
– Whitehall source said potential changes included introducing ban on people leaving their homes more than once a week

10.01.2021 - 15:33 [ theGuardian.com ]

NHS could vaccinate UK against Covid in five days, says Oxford professor

Sir John Bell, regius chair of medicine at the University of Oxford, said stubborn NHS bureaucrats were standing in the way of a high-speed mass inoculation programme that could prevent many further deaths.

“The NHS has the theoretical capacity to immunise everybody in five days if they want to, but I don’t get the sense they are really motivated,” Bell told the Times.

10.01.2021 - 15:27 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

No10 is examining plans to keep bars closed for FIVE MONTHS with full lockdown until late March as Covid death toll passes 80,000

Prof Whitty commended the public for their efforts to stop the spread of Covid-19 and noted the hope offered by various vaccines, but he echoed other experts in saying it would be some weeks before the jabs start to reduce the number of people taken to hospital.

10.01.2021 - 14:42 [ Neil Clark, journalist & broadcaster / Twitter ]

(1) How do we know we’re not bring told the truth? There’s c 1600-1700 deaths a day at this time of the year. Yet we are told that ´1300 are dying from Covid’. But with no excess deaths that means just 3-400 from pneumonia, flu, heart disease, cancers? That is clearly absurd.

(09.01.2021)

(2) Clearly what is happening is a reclassification of deaths. Non-Covid deaths are being reclassified as ´Covid deaths’ by means of ramped up PCR testing. Which begs the question: why are they doing this, if not to justify lockdowns and other restrictions?

10.01.2021 - 14:23 [ theCanary.co ]

Coronavirus data contractors engaged in dirty tricks and disinformation campaigns

(10.05.2020)

Palantir was co-founded in 2004 by Paypal owner and billionaire Peter Thiel. What the blog doesn’t reveal is that Palantir’s client list has included amomgst others, the CIA, the FBI, the NSA, the Centre for Disease Control, the Marine Corps, the Air Force, Special Operations Command, West Point and the IRS.

Furthermore, in 2016, it was revealed Palantir had a $34.6m contract with US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and helped the Customs and Border Protection Agency create the Analytical Framework for Intelligence (AFI) system to track immigrants.

Nor does the blog mention that Palantir worked for UK intelligence and was awarded contracts to handle vast data sets on UK citizens for British spy agency GCHQ.

09.01.2021 - 18:18 [ BMJ.com ]

Covid-19: the problems with case counting

(03 September 2020)

At the moment it seems that a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) positive result is the only criterion required for a case to be recognised.

“In any other disease we would have a clearly defined specification that would usually involve signs, symptoms, and a test result,” says Carl Heneghan, director of the Centre for Evidence Based Medicine at the University of Oxford and the editor of BMJ Evidence-Based Medicine. “We are moving into a biotech world where the norms of clinical reasoning are going out of the window. A PCR test does not equal covid-19; it should not, but in some definitions it does.”

09.01.2021 - 18:12 [ Spectator.co.uk ]

The way ‘Covid deaths’ are being counted is a national scandal

(30.05.2020)

Normally, two doctors are needed to certify a death, one of whom has been treating the patient or who knows them and has seen them recently. That has changed. For Covid-19 only, the certification can be made by a single doctor, and there is no requirement for them to have examined, or even met, the patient. A video-link consultation in the four weeks prior to death is now felt to be sufficient for death to be attributed to Covid-19.

09.01.2021 - 18:02 [ Lockdown Resistance Network / Twitter ]

Enough and no more. Never in history have we behaved like this. This is psychological warfare and gaslighting. Whitty and the rest are drunk on power. I’m not complying with this nonsense. I’m not complying with this once great country becoming a totalitarian dictatorship.

09.01.2021 - 17:53 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Now scientists call for ‚lax‘ third lockdown to be made even TOUGHER: SAGE expert says new coronavirus variant cannot be contained by current restrictions as terrifying Chris Whitty adverts try to scare of Brits into staying at home

As a result, ministers are considering introducing tougher measures as part of the crackdown, including possibly making face masks mandatory in busy outdoor areas.

England’s Chief Medical Officer Professor Chris Whitty has appeared in adverts urging us to stay at home as the new variant of the virus rips across the country.

04.01.2021 - 17:59 [ Wikispooks.com ]

Document:Senior spy appointed to lead UK’s joint biosecurity centre

(05.06.2020)

Clare Gardiner, head of cyber resilience and strategy at the UK National Cyber Security Centre — a branch of signals intelligence agency GCHQ — will become the centre’s first director-general, responsible for advising ministers on the “alert level” for the virus; which is similar to assessing the terror threat.

Ms Gardiner’s role at the NCSC involves advising businesses and public organisations on how to improve their cyber defences, and she will return to this post after her secondment at the centre. But her research background in epidemiology and medical statistics make her well-suited to the role, according to one person familiar with her appointment.

She will report to Dido Harding, who is in charge of the NHS test and trace service.

The decision to put a security official in charge is likely to cause consternation among public health experts, who have questioned whether the template of a terror analysis centre is appropriate for managing a viral pandemic,

04.01.2021 - 17:48 [ Nick Eardley / Twitter ]

NEW: Sources have told the BBC the Covid threat level – decided by the Joint Biosecurity Centre, which includes the UK’s four Chief Medical Officers – is being moved up to 5, the highest level. This is different from tiers

04.01.2021 - 17:40 [ MorningAdvertiser.co.uk ]

‘No hard evidence on curfew’ admits Gov adviser Vallance

(09 Dec 2020)

Vallance and chief medical officer Chris Whitty were asked if there was something that could be done in the structure in scientific advice that could be a bit more forensic about those restrictions on the sector that have a very big impact on certain people. The scientific advisers said they are trying very hard to get data but can´t give specific data on it, and nor can anyone else across the world.

04.01.2021 - 17:10 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

England goes BACK into full lockdown: Boris will plunge country into March-style curbs in 8pm TV address tonight – with fears schools will be shut and households banned from mixing for MONTHS as COVID alert is raised to top level

– Boris Johnson is set to announce a dramatic new national lockdown for England amid mutant Covid crisis
– Ex-health secretary Jeremy Hunt urged immediate closure of schools, borders with household mixing ban
– Matt Hancock said the tiers were no longer strong enough to deal with the mutant version of coronavirus
– Suggested public’s failure to comply with all the rules was to blame for inability to control outbreaks in Tier 4
– PM warned that curbs are about to get ‚tougher‘ – and admitted he is considering further closures of schools
– Government’s core ‚Covid-O‘ committee has met this morning to decide on the next steps in the response

04.01.2021 - 07:20 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Boris’s lockdown D-Day: PM will decide TODAY whether to plunge ALL of England back into full lockdown – potentially for MONTHS – after Keir Starmer demanded tougher restrictions to stop ‚out of control‘ mutant Covid virus

Professor Sir Mark Walport, a member of the Government’s Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), said it would be difficult to keep the new, faster-spreading strain of the virus under control without ‚much tighter‘ social-distancing measures.

Speaking on The Andrew Marr Show, the former chief scientific adviser said: ‚It’s clear that this variant is transmitting more readily – it’s transmitting more readily in younger age groups as well.

03.01.2021 - 07:06 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

PETER HITCHENS: Guess where Professor Lockdown got his ideas … China’s police state

Matt Hancock, the Health Secretary, said at the time that it was ‘just not possible’ for Ferguson to continue advising the Government. But this was not true. The professor was said to have resigned from the SAGE advisory committee. But did he? Not really. A current State website lists him as a member of the ‘New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group’ (NERVTAG). Minutes suggest he was only ever away from that for a few weeks.

30.12.2020 - 03:58 [ mark cording / Twitter ]

What’s the update on the Oxford vaccine Mr Hancock

30.12.2020 - 03:50 [ Matt Hancock, secretary of State for Health & Social Care / Twitter ]

Fantastic to see Margaret Keenan receive her second dose of the @Pfizer /@BioNTech_Group #coronavirus vaccine

30.12.2020 - 03:38 [ BBC ]

Covid: Millions more braced for tougher rules in England

Government sources have indicated an announcement later will see more areas move into tier four – „stay at home“.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock is due to detail the changes – which could be introduced within days – in the House of Commons after 14:30 GMT.

30.12.2020 - 03:35 [ noone@nowhere / Twitter ]

Still no Oxford vaccine emergency approval. Unbelievable.

(23.12.2020)

28.12.2020 - 17:26 [ gab.ai/murali / Twitter ]

How many willing to bet that this case is part of pharma wars to sabotage Oxford vaccine?

(28.11.2020)

28.12.2020 - 17:25 [ Telegraph.co.uk ]

Coronavirus latest news: One million vaccinations a week will not bring pandemic under control, warns Sage expert

Sir Jeremy Farrar, the director of the Wellcome Trust who advises Number 10’s advisory panel Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) said: „We’re not going to be free of this pandemic by February, this is now a human endemic infection.

28.12.2020 - 17:24 [ .oxfordmail.co.uk ]

No herd immunity through vaccine programme before summer, Sage scientist warns

Calum Semple, professor of outbreak medicine at the University of Liverpool and a member of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), described the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine as a “game changer” if it is approved by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) in the coming days.

But he told BBC Breakfast…

28.12.2020 - 17:20 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

SAGE demands ALL pupils are kept home till February: Scientists demand new national lockdown for kids after Gove says only Years 11 and 13 and primary schools will return on January 4

Pressure has also been growing on Boris Johnson from within his own party to keep all pupils in school at the start the new term – but the PM has sided with SAGE scientists, who are pushing for schools, especially secondary schools to close for all of January, at least, because of the new super-strain of Covid-19, according to Politico.

Mr Johnson was reportedly told last week by SAGE, led by Chief Scientific Adviser Patrick Vallance, that a stricter lockdown is required because the one in November, where schools remained open, did not keep the ‚R‘ rate below 1, an adviser has claimed.

28.12.2020 - 09:44 [ Mirror.co.uk ]

Millions more face being placed in Tier 4 in bid to control mutant coronavirus strain

Dr Zubaida Haque, who sits on Independent Sage, has questioned why the government haven’t placed the whole country in the harshest tier of restrictions to save lives.

27.12.2020 - 05:22 [ gab.ai/murali / Twitter ]

How many willing to bet that this case is part of pharma wars to sabotage Oxford vaccine?

(28.11.2020)

27.12.2020 - 05:20 [ Sean / Twitter ]

Can I ask why the Oxford vaccine approval is taking so long? It only took 23 days for Pfizers, we are nearly at day 30 and still no sign of approval!

(21.12.2020)

27.12.2020 - 05:05 [ Telegraph.co.uk ]

Millions to receive Oxford coronavirus vaccine from Jan 4

The Government is aiming for two million people to receive their first dose of either the Oxford vaccine or the Pfizer jab within a fortnight as part of a major ramping up of the inoculation programme.

23.12.2020 - 11:32 [ BBC ]

Oxford vaccine: How did they make it so quickly?

(23.11.2020)

Scientists took a common cold virus that infected chimpanzees and engineered it to become the building block of a vaccine against almost anything.

Before Covid, 330 people had been given ChAdOx1 based-vaccines for diseases ranging from flu to Zika virus, and prostate cancer to the tropical disease chikungunya.

The virus from chimps is genetically modified so it cannot cause an infection in people. It can then be modified again to contain the genetic blueprints for whatever you want to train the immune system to attack.

23.12.2020 - 11:18 [ inews.co.uk ]

Boris Johnson’s future as Prime Minister rests on the Oxford vaccine being approved

The hope in Downing Street is that the Oxford vaccine will get the green light by the end of the year. This would allow the Prime Minister to start laying out plans for restrictions to be lifted.

21.12.2020 - 22:37 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

UK has vaccinated 500,000 people against Covid since December 8, Boris Johnson says as regulators face growing pressure to approve Oxford’s jab in desperate race to speed up the roll-out

The MHRA drugs regulator has been doing its final review of the vaccine for three weeks now, since November 27, with a decision expected by next Tuesday.

(…)

However, they made a decision about Pfizer and BioNTech’s jab within 10 days of being instructed to do so by the Department of Health.

21.12.2020 - 21:09 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Who knew what and when about Britain’s Covid mutation? PHE first discovered the fast-spreading variant in October but didn’t raise the alarm until last week – amid claims scientists held back discovery to bounce No10 into Tier Four

At the start of the month information about VUI-202012/01 was passed to the New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Advisory Group (NERVTAG) committee, which advises England’s Chief Medical Officer, Chris Whitty. The group first discussed the strain at a December 11 meeting and began modelling its severity on the UK’s epidemic.

Ministers were not made aware of the variant until last Monday, almost two months after its initial discovery, when they were told it was more infectious and probably behind the continued rise in cases in London and the South East.

20.12.2020 - 15:24 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

It felt like a meeting of horror movie scriptwriters: GLEN OWEN tells the inside story of how a libertarian PM ended up feeling he had no choice but to cancel Christmas

The grim countenances of Chris Whitty and Sir Patrick Vallance told the story before they even started talking – Christmas was off. As Boris Johnson sat in the Cabinet Room at 5pm on Friday, Whitty and Vallance appeared on the Zoom monitors and started reeling off increasingly alarming data about the new mutant strain of the coronavirus…

19.12.2020 - 21:07 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

‚We’re not going to be knocking on people doors on Christmas Day‘: Police officers say new Tier 4 restrictions ‚don’t make sense‘ as thousands vow to IGNORE the rules

At an emergency press conference, Boris Johnson announced a third of England, including London and swathes of the home counties, will be shifted up to the brutal new tier from midnight.

Mr Marsh told MailOnline the new rules – which close non-essential retail and ban overnight stays in infection spots – meant little, because Mr Johnson has ‚lost the good will of the people‘ over the festive period.

19.12.2020 - 20:43 [ Downing Street No 10 / Regierung von Großbritannien ]

Prime Minister announces Tier 4: ‚Stay At Home‘ Alert Level in response to new COVID variant

The Prime Minister has announced tougher restrictions for large parts of South East England with a new Tier 4: ‘Stay at Home’ alert level.

The decision follows a rapid rise in infections attributed to the rapid spread of a new variant of COVID-19.

Based on preliminary modelling data, the New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (NERVTAG) now consider that the new strain can spread significantly more quickly and could increase R by 0.4 or more. New and existing data will continue to be analysed as we learn more about the variant.

19.12.2020 - 20:38 [ Telegraph.co.uk ]

Exclusive: Alarming new evidence on coronavirus mutation could bring tougher restrictions

Government scientists at the Porton Down laboratory in Wiltshire have been conducting experiments on the new strain, and have confirmed ministers‘ fears about it being far more infectious than the original strain of the virus.

(…)

The meeting of ministers was expected to continue late into the night, with Whitehall sources refusing to rule out a press conference on Saturday to announce additional restrictions.

13.12.2020 - 19:40 [ BMJ.com ]

Conflicts of interest among the UK government’s covid-19 advisers

(09.12.2020)

Little is known about the interests of the doctors, scientists, and academics on whose advice the UK government relies to manage the pandemic. Attempts to discover more are frequently thwarted, finds Paul D Thacker

13.12.2020 - 19:35 [ Heise.de ]

Unklare Verbindungen zwischen Corona-Beratern und Privatwirtschaft

Kritiker der Regierungspolitik in Großbritannien führen zur Untermauerung ihrer Forderungen just den Chef des GOS, Patrick Vallance, an. Der führenden Wissenschaftsberater der Johnson-Regierung und zugleich Vorsitzende der Impf-Taskforce besitze Aktien des Pharmaunternehmens GlaxoSmithKline im Wert von 600.000 britischer Pfund. Eben dieses Unternehmen hatte einen undurchsichtigen Corona-Impf-Deal mit der Regierung geschlossen.

04.12.2020 - 21:24 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

No10 stops short of ruling out Covid ‚immunity passports‘ despite saying it is ’not something the PM wants‘ – as Wales raises fears of spot checks at pubs and shops by bringing in ID-style cards for people who get vaccine

– Pfizer vaccines licensed by UK regulator and will be distributed from next week
– Wales says people will be issued with ID-style cards to show they have had jab
– Fears that pubs and shops could demand proof of vaccine before allowing entry

19.11.2020 - 17:49 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

‚SAGE was put on a pedestal… but their models clearly didn’t reflect reality‘: Tory MP slams scientific advisers as damning documentary reveals they relied on WIKIPEDIA data and wrongly predicted virus would peak in June

– SAGE admitted early virus modelling based on figures from online encyclopedia
– Committee of scientists advising PM also had no expert on human coronavirus

14.11.2020 - 15:59 [ BMJ.com ]

Covid-19: politicisation, “corruption,” and suppression of science

Science is being suppressed for political and financial gain. Covid-19 has unleashed state corruption on a grand scale, and it is harmful to public health.1 Politicians and industry are responsible for this opportunistic embezzlement. So too are scientists and health experts. The pandemic has revealed how the medical-political complex can be manipulated in an emergency—a time when it is even more important to safeguard science.

The UK’s pandemic response provides at least four examples of suppression of science or scientists. First, the membership, research, and deliberations of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) were initially secret until a press leak forced transparency.

06.11.2020 - 18:15 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Downing Street REJECTS calls to end lockdown despite four more sets of real-world data showing second wave of Covid was dropping and R rate was stable BEFORE crippling restrictions based on flawed projections

Downing Street today refused calls for England’s second lockdown to be cut short and insisted it will run until December 2, despite four more sets of real-world data that show the second wave was already shrinking before the Government pushed the panic button on a drastic month-long shutdown.

Promising figures published today by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) – which runs a massive government surveillance scheme that randomly swabs tens of thousands of people to track the size of the outbreak – suggest that the country’s coronavirus outbreak has shrunk.

06.11.2020 - 13:35 [ Telegraph.co.uk ]

Exclusive: ‚Covid graphs were wrong in suggesting daily deaths would soon surpass first wave‘

Official projections which pushed the country into a second lockdown have been quietly revised to no longer suggest deaths could soon overtake those at the peak of the first wave, The Telegraph has learned.

03.11.2020 - 14:59 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

More proof England’s lockdown was premature? Top researchers say R rate has dropped to 1 as Oxford expert claims Covid infections are ‚flatlining‘ and the ‚4,000 deaths‘ graph used to justify restrictions has ‚proven to be incorrect‘

– King’s College London said cases were now ‚plateauing‘ and there was a ’slight fall‘ in infections across UK
– Oxford’s Carl Heneghan said told how coronavirus hospital admissions, cases and ‚in effect‘ deaths in retreat
– It comes as Sir Patrick Vallance and Prof Chris Whitty face questions from MPs over the 4,000 deaths figure

03.11.2020 - 14:49 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Is the NHS actually QUIETER than usual? Leaked document claims hospitals are 84% full (but last autumn the figure was 92%)

– Beds have never been less than 85% full for a three-month period since 2010
– Spring this year was the first time, because patients were turfed out for Covid-19
– And occupancy remains below average levels despite second wave, stat shows

02.11.2020 - 15:38 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

How Vallance’s secret blood-curdling press briefing on looming lockdown – an hour BEFORE Boris agreed to it – lit the fuse on Nov 5th shutdown that could blow up our economy

– Boris Johnson announced England-wide lockdown after weeks insisting he would stick to his local ‚Tiers‘
– The PM summoned a dramatic press conference Saturday night after details of the U-turn idea were leaked
– Sir Patrick Vallance gave blood-curdling briefing about the situation on Friday before ministers made decision
– More details were then leaked overnight before the wider Cabinet had been gathered, forcing the PM’s hand
Mr Johnson is set to use a statement to the House of Commons this afternoon to say there is ’no alternative‘

02.11.2020 - 15:33 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Apocalyptic forecast of 4,000 coronavirus deaths a day could be FIVE TIMES too high and had already been proved wrong when government revealed it at weekend

– Sir Patrick Vallance presented worst-case scenario in Saturday’s briefing when lockdown was confirmed
– But it has emerged it was based on forecasts made weeks ago and since updated to give lower estimates
– Oxford’s Carl Heneghan said he was ‚concerned‘ at officials‘ choice to use old data which could be misleading
– Tory MPs accused SAGE, of which Vallance is chair, of ‚cherry-picking‘ figures and not giving full picture
– England will be thrust into a second lockdown from Thursday, pending a vote in Parliament on Wednesday

01.11.2020 - 18:24 [ Telegraph.co.uk ]

Coronavirus latest news: Boris Johnson faces Tory rebellion over national lockdown

Boris Johnson faces a rebellion from his backbenches over the new national lockdown restrictions for England amid warnings that the measures would be „disastrous“ for the economy.

This comes after Cabinet Minister Michael Gove admitted the four-week-long national lockdown could be extended beyond December 2.

01.11.2020 - 18:18 [ CNN ]

Boris Johnson accused of ‚giving in to scientific advisers‘ as England heads for lockdown

Former Conservative leader Iain Duncan Smith wrote in the UK’s Telegraph newspaper that the month-long lockdown showed government was „giving in to the scientific advisers,“ claiming that government experts had „pressurised“ Johnson into the step.

„Normally, advisers advise and ministers decide. Yet that system has broken down with Sage [the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies] believing its advice to be more like commandments written on stone and its members publicly lecturing the Government over the airways,“ Duncan Smith wrote.

31.10.2020 - 21:18 [ BBC ]

‚Stay at home‘ from Thursday, says PM in new England lockdown

During the news conference, it was explained that the number of hospital admissions is rising rapidly.

Scientists have made a projection to see how the number of daily admissions would rise over the next six weeks.

As shown by the graph below, the number would surpass the figures of the first wave.

31.10.2020 - 12:04 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Three facts No 10’s experts got wrong: DR MIKE YEADON says claims that the majority of the population is susceptible to Covid, that only 7% are infected so far and virus death rate is 1% are all false

While Boris Johnson will be the person announcing that catastrophic decision, the measures are being dictated by a small group of scientists who, in my view, have repeatedly got things terribly wrong.

The Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) has made three incorrect assumptions which have had, and continue to have, disastrous consequences for people’s lives and the economy.

31.10.2020 - 12:00 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

The data ‚forcing Boris into lockdown‘: SAGE releases papers showing scientists sounded alarm two weeks ago and UK is headed for ‚worse than worst case scenario‘ including 85,000 deaths – as 52,000 catch virus every day

– SAGE said on October 14 that number of infections and hospital admissions were breaching worst case
– Warned that modelling suggested up to 74,000 people a day could be becoming infected in England
– Separate data from Office for National Statistics found almost 52,000 people were catching virus every day

14.10.2020 - 12:09 [ Independent.co.uk ]

Keir Starmer calls for ‘circuit break’ lockdown as coronavirus cases rise sharply

The Labour leader’s dramatic move came after confidence in Mr Johnson’s approach was shaken by the release late on Monday of papers from his own expert advisers, which revealed the Scientific Advisory Group on Emergencies (Sage) recommended a circuit-breaker as long as three weeks ago, along with the closure of all pubs and restaurants and more controls on social contacts in a bid to curtail the spread of the virus in England.

14.10.2020 - 11:50 [ Scotty #EndSAGENow / Twitter ]

Chris Whitty is trending. That can only call for one thing: #SackWhitty #SackWhitty #SackWhitty #SackWhitty

14.10.2020 - 11:43 [ theSun.co.uk ]

‚WE NEED MORE‘: Tier 3 lockdown not enough to stop Covid, warns Chris Whitty, as it emerges SAGE wanted circuit-break three weeks ago

(13.10.2020)

Meanwhile, it emerged the government’s Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) committee – of which Prof Whitty is a member – officially recommended a two-week lockdown on September 21.

14.10.2020 - 11:41 [ DailyMail.co.uk ]

Chris Whitty ‚wants a new two-week NATIONAL lockdown and true UK cases are as high as 38,000-a-day‘, ex-WHO expert who sits on Independent SAGE panel claims

(17.09.2020)

Professor Chris Whitty is pushing for a new two-week national lockdown amid concerns the true number of coronavirus cases is far higher than being reported, a former World Health Organisation expert claims.

Anthony Costello, who sits on the independent SAGE panel, made the statement on Twitter on Wednesday evening, adding that daily infections could be as high as 38,000.

18.06.2020 - 18:04 [ Telegraph.co.uk ]

Britain’s ’scientific‘ Covid response is locked in a dangerous lie

This nonsensical concept has proved useful for responsibility-shirking politicians. But the myth of officially-approved scientific truth is not only cynical but dangerous.

It is the main reason why No 10 can’t ditch its most disastrous policy, the two-metre rule. As the Government has spent months pretending to prostrate to the wisdom of Sir Patrick Vallance and Chris Whitty, who have both championed two metres, No 10 has found it impossible to quietly drop the moronic regulation: while it dithers over a time-wasting review of the decision, false rumours have even swirled that its two chief scientific advisers could resign in protest.