As the UK has yo-yoed in and out of multiple lockdowns, restrictions have harmed people’s livelihoods, businesses, mental and physical health and their quality of life. In the first and second lockdowns, these restrictions proved insufficient to permanently drive down the prevalence of Covid-19. This time, we have been promised that all adults will have received their first vaccine dose by July – but its level of effectiveness, coupled with the potential emergence of new strains of the virus, means the vaccine rollout will not be a complete solution to the pandemic.
The government’s forthcoming roadmap for easing restrictions should be focused on avoiding the mistakes of the past 12 months. The UK must learn from what has worked in other countries that are now successfully returning to everyday life, such as Australia,