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UK is not alone in its Covid failures

Colm McCarthy


Governments worldwide failed to act promptly, underestimated how fast contagion spreads and believed they could minimise the economic impact 

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Hedging their bets: the decision to allow full crowds into the Cheltenham Festival in 2020 backfired on the UK government. Picture by Michael Steele/Getty Images

Hedging their bets: the decision to allow full crowds into the Cheltenham Festival in 2020 backfired on the UK government. Picture by Michael Steele/Getty Images

Hedging their bets: the decision to allow full crowds into the Cheltenham Festival in 2020 backfired on the UK government. Picture by Michael Steele/Getty Images

New cases, hospitalisations and deaths from the virus have all risen somewhat in the UK over the last week. Given the rapid roll-out of vaccination, the best in Europe, this should not have been happening. The reason seems to be the so-called Indian variant, more infectious and more widespread in Britain, and some experts are worried the government may be forced to pause, or even reverse, the lifting of restrictions.  

This matters for other European countries since the United Kingdom will play pathfinder. If vaccination is to deliver success despite the emergence of new variants, more infectious and possibly more damaging, it will deliver first in the UK. 


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