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UK News

Christian Medical Fellowship: Take new Covid-19 warning seriously

by Tola Mbakwe

The Christian Medical Fellowship has said the UK is in danger of going into a second wave of the coronavirus pandemic if people don't adhere to government guidelines.

Steve Fouch from the organisation told Premier: "It's about encouraging wearing face masks in enclosed and public spaces. It's about handwashing, it's maintaining that two-metre social distancing. 

"For most of us, we had the feeling that we're over the worst of it [the pandemic], and it's not been too bad. Therefore we have all, to some extent, let our guard down. Now is the time when we're realising that we're going to have to go back to thinking how we were back in April, May time when we suddenly realised that we were having to be much more strict about social interaction because it really did threaten other people."

Fouch's comments come after England's deputy chief medical officer said the public had "relaxed too much" over the summer and described the rising number of cases as being of "great concern".

Professor Jonathan Van-Tam issued the warning as Caerphilly in south Wales prepared to be placed under local lockdown and stricter measures were extended in Scotland.

There were a further 2,948 lab-confirmed cases of coronavirus in the UK as of 9am on Monday, following the 2,988 reported on Sunday, which was the largest daily figure since May.

In an interview with journalists, Prof Van-Tam said: "We've been able to relax a bit over the summer, the disease levels have been really quite low in the UK through the summer, but these latest figures really show us that much as people might like to say 'oh well it's gone away' - this hasn't gone away.

"And if we're not careful, if we don't take this incredibly seriously from this point on we're going to have a bumpy ride over the next few months."

He said that the rise is "much more marked" in the 17-21 age group, but noted there is a "more general and creeping geographic trend" across the UK.

Fouch told Premier Christians have a duty to not become weary in obeying coronavirus restrictions. 

"I think we're all feeling that sense of COVID fatigue of 'How much more are we going to have to do this? It feels like we've just come out of the worst of it. Are we going back into it?' And the answer is that we were in danger of doing that. That is a real risk.

"We are called to love our neighbour as we love ourselves. That means taking responsibility for not being a risk to other people. Obviously, the other benefit of that is if you're not being a risk to other people, other people are being less of a risk to you as well. So it's a win-win. By modelling that behaviour, by showing that kind of concern for other people, we set an example. We should be modelling something that others will want to follow."

The total number of confirmed cases in the UK has passed 350,100. 

It's understood ministers are preparing to cut the number of people allowed to gather in a private home. The government's guidance says no more than two households should meet indoors in England. But the legal limit - which is 30 people - is expected to be toughened up this week.

Listen to Premier's interview with Steve Fouch here: 

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