The five ‘robust’ tests being used to judge when and how quickly to ease restrictions demonstrate that the Government will not be rushed into letting people rush straight back to their pre-coronavirus behaviour, says West Cornwall MP Derek Thomas.
“We have now been in lockdown for six weeks and there is no question that this effort on the part of everyone has brought down the spread of coronavirus,” he said.
“Debate is now moving towards how we go about relaxing the restrictions we all live under and a good number of people have contacted me saying they are concerned, firstly that the lockdown restrictions might be eased too soon, and secondly, that West Cornwall will quickly be swamped by visitors looking to get away for a holiday.
“I am telling them that the Government has set five robust tests that will judge when lockdown measures can be relaxed and at what pace with the overriding principle of keeping people safe.
“I believe we are getting closer to meeting the first four tests but that there is still a way to go before the Government can be sure that there will be no second peak.
“My guess is that there will be a phased easing of restrictions and that it could include something along the lines of the Italian model announced in the last few days whereby people are only allowed to travel within their own region (or county).
“I can also reassure people who have noticed a general increase in activity in areas such as food take-away outlets, building supplies and other outlets that this is not a change in the lockdown arrangements - rather a recognition that these businesses can operate safely whilst observing the Government lockdown regime.”
The five tests:
Test One: Making sure the NHS can cope.
Test Two: A ‘sustained and consistent’ fall in the daily death rate. Test Three: Rate of infection decreasing to a ‘manageable levels’.
Test Four: Ensuring supply of tests and personal protective equipment can meet future demand.
Test Five: Being confident any adjustments would not risk a second peak.