The prime minister’s over-promising and under-delivering has to end. If he tries to spin his way out of the looming coronavirus disaster it will cost the country dear
The country is facing a second wave of coronavirus because the government is losing track of the outbreak’s spread. Testing capacity is being outpaced by an exponentially growing epidemic. Without testing the people who need testing, the authorities can’t see where cases are rising. With visibility of the disease’s extent obscured, its transmission is harder to slow. A second wave of Covid-19 could be more serious than the first. The NHS, still reeling from the disruption of the last few months, is dealing with a backlog of patients. Winter is coming and with it the possibility of a joint flu epidemic and Covid pandemic. Britain has been put in a dangerous place by Boris Johnson’s administrative failure.
The government messed up its Covid response in the first wave of coronavirus, making blunder after blunder. Britain had no mass testing capacity and was forced to impose a damaging lockdown that plunged the economy into its deepest recession in 300 years. England recorded the highest excess death rate in Europe. Ministers have had months to put things right. A new testing system was devised. The rationale of coming out of the national lockdown was that a functioning test-and-trace system would help the government to spot and suppress local outbreaks. This was the “whack-a-mole” strategy. But it only works if you know where the moles are.