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  • life in lock down these deserted London streets tell a story repeated across the world as almost half the planet is now living inside.

  • In just a matter of weeks, our life has changed beyond recognition.

  • And yet every day the number of dead keeps climbing alarmingly so in this channel for new special, we go beyond the news and we bring in global expertise.

  • Toe answer the following question.

  • When are we going to flatten that curve?

  • Could we become the next Italy, Spain or even America?

  • In every house, on every street, in every neighborhood in this country, people are asking the same questions.

  • When will this end?

  • How can this end?

  • And if and when it does end, what will the world look like?

  • In other words, what?

  • It's barely been two weeks since the beginning of the lock down, and it already feels like an eternity, which we're all having to get used to, including my family.

  • In this house.

  • I have four kids at home.

  • Two of them have had their A levels, and GCS is canceled, and they keep asking me the same question every day.

  • When is the lock down going to end I simply don't know anything anyone, those.

  • Meanwhile, the conversation around the dinner table is like no other conversation that we ever used tohave.

  • How many ventilators are there?

  • How many tests are there?

  • When are we going to reach the peak?

  • This is a new vocabulary for a completely new reality.

  • So here's the question.

  • How is our government doing?

  • A few weeks ago, we were all living lies we probably took for granted a day at the races, dinner out a quick pint exercise all parts of normal British.

  • And whilst the Corona virus had shut down much of Europe, Britain was arguing over an apparent policy.

  • No other country was adopted.

  • The only way to stop this epidemic is indeed to achieve herd immunity.

  • Okay, Thomas, you're shaking your head.

  • This is crazy.

  • So we're saying we want to kill 200,000 people in the UK days later, the Prime Minister asked us to do this.

  • Now is the time for everyone to stop non essential contact with others.

  • Not everyone understands the message.

  • Then the ask quickly becomes a kn order.

  • Stay at home, protect her in a chess and save lives.

  • Lock down is now our new normal, only essential shopping or travel is allowed Britain's way of life on hold.

  • And, of course, there's a sort of grim international competition going on.

  • How we doing compared to other countries?

  • Are we testing Maur or not?

  • And why not?

  • How many deaths do we have compared to others?

  • Once upon a time, I'm talking about mid March here.

  • We thought we were four weeks behind Italy.

  • We were wrong.

  • Italy's national lock down happened on the ninth of March.

  • Ours came two weeks later, but at virtually the same point in the epidemic.

  • Since then, our rate of new cases has slowed to a daily increase of around 22%.

  • In larger European countries cases, they're starting to level out, while in the United States the daily increases almost 33%.

  • The death rate, however, tell a mixed story.

  • Italy peak before any other European country, now has almost 14,000 deaths, an average of 234 per 1,000,000.

  • The UK has 38,000 cases in just over 3600 deaths.

  • That's an average of 53 per 1,000,000 climbing.

  • Germany, by comparison, has more than double our cases, but about 1/3 of the deaths that's an average of just 13 per 1,000,000.

  • The wise Germany faring so much better than others.

  • It started this crisis with around 30 critical care beds for 100,000 patients.

  • Italy just about coped with 12 per 100,000.

  • The UK had just seven.

  • And it was that fact, coupled with the explosion of cases in Italy that made the government realize that without a full lock down up to 1/4 of a 1,000,000 Britons could die.

  • My cannons that this weekend the first of thousands of new ventilator devices will roll off the production line on be delivered to the N.

  • H s next week.

  • We now have around 8000 ventilators, and we're told thousands more are on the way.

  • But to Slow Cove in 19 spread, you need something else.

  • Test test The World Health Organization is urging all countries to ramp up its testing to identify and isolate new cases, but the UK is only testing around 50,000 people a week, while in Germany it's being ramped up to half a 1,000,000 a week.

  • US.

  • Is tested over 1,000,000 in total the previous inaction leaves it in the epicenter of this crisis.

  • This is gonna be a very painful, very, very painful two weeks and now has more cases than any other country.

  • Covert, 19 seems to pay even less attention to politics than it does to borders.

  • We're all at the mercy of pure arithmetic.

  • What, then, is the perfect combination to ensure his little deaths as possible?

  • And how much longer must we all live in?

  • Lock down?

  • Well, joining me now a three professors of global health, David Heyman is distinguished fellow Chatham House.

  • He led the World Health Organization's response to SARS.

  • Aunt has been advising them on Corona virus.

  • John Edmonds is professor of epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

  • He works on the mapping of infectious diseases and this currently advising the government here.

  • I'm Debbie Schrader's chair in global health at Edinburgh University.

  • She has worked with a number of U.

  • N and government agencies in developing countries.

  • John Edmonds If I could start with you if I may.

  • We had a similar program three weeks ago, which you on and you said at the time that actually, let's listen to what the scientists are saying, but you know, we don't need a full government locked down yet.

  • We don't need to lock down the country.

  • And then a few days later, the government decided to do just that.

  • Do you think that the government squandered some precious time that the Chinese had bought us with their own lock down?

  • So I think from a purely epidemiological point of view, the best thing for us to do would have been to go into lock down in January and then stay in lock down until we get a vaccine, which might be a year from now or longer.

  • And but that's no the best thing to do for the for the country.

  • You know, we've been in lock down now for about 10 days, and it's really starting to drag.

  • I think many people, and so you do have to time these sorts of interventions properly because you have to try and keep people with you.

  • And that is what I would say in a interview a few weeks ago on I still maintain it.

  • I think you said on Wednesday that we're beginning to see this lock down, having a positive effect.

  • Could you tell us more about that?

  • Yes.

  • It looks like it.

  • We could compare how many contacts people make now are making now with how many contacts they normally would make if there wasn't an epidemic.

  • And from that we can infer what the reproduction number is likely to be.

  • A So this reproduction numbers the average number of secondary cases each case generates.

  • And we think it's now below one, which means that the epidemic should start to peek so you won't see it until probably next week you'll start to see it on effect.

  • So this is something we think you'll start to see these peace data starting to peak.

  • That doesn't mean the epidemic is over there.

  • It just means that we've got we've stopped it from growing.

  • Okay, let's bring in Debbie, a sweetheart Debbie, and are well on the right track that the curve is beginning to flat.

  • Do you agree with that assessment?

  • Well, I think I mean, what we are hopefully seeing is that people are complying with the physical desisting measures.

  • What you would expect to see is, of course, a slowdown in transmission and staying within n hs capacity.

  • The worry is that actually we do want to get out of this kind of lock down situation.

  • It's not good for society.

  • It's not good for the economy to be in the situation we're in.

  • And so what happens when we release the lock down and we go back to somewhat semi normality?

  • Is it going to mean that spread increases again?

  • And I worry that will be stuck in an endless cycle of locked down and release, which is basically gonna be dictated by how n hs capacity looks?

  • What will that kind of lock down on again?

  • Off again?

  • Due to our society, I mean this tears at the social fabric because I mean the thing.

  • I think about it every day and locked down.

  • We're having kids who are not in school, not getting an education.

  • You're widening inequalities that you're having Children falling into poverty.

  • We're already seeing a steep rise and the demand on food banks for things like bread and milk and basic necessities.

  • You're seeing, you know, arrives and you know, calls for domestic abuse on and women needing support child abuse.

  • I mean, there's all kinds of knock on social effect.

  • John Edmonds.

  • I wanted to what extent?

  • The government is thinking that there comes a point when the benefits off this lock down of these really quite stringent social measures are going to be outweighed by the negative effects on our society that Debbie has just outlined.

  • Well, I think they're they're trying to monitor that all of the time.

  • So there is a, uh, you know, balance that needs to be struck here between the lock down, which is the best thing epidemiologically for this virus and everything else in society.

  • On dhe, this sort of very long period, perhaps intermittent lockdowns.

  • That's exactly what's going to happen.

  • That's what we're in.

  • We're maybe 5% through this epidemic so far, so we've got a very, very long way to go.

  • David Heyman You've got a vast amount of experience when it comes to dealing with epidemics like SARS on dhe Ebola Looking forward, then what's next in all this?

  • Do you think?

  • Well, the next is a good risk assessment by the government, which they'll be doing, and they now have the ability to do antibody testing in communities to determine what really has been the spread of this virus during the preceding months.

  • Information that John, for example, needs in his modeling activities to better understand what is really going on.

  • This is a new organism.

  • We don't know its destiny.

  • We don't even understand completely.

  • It's transmissibility.

  • One country that's been mentioned, an awful lot of South Korea.

  • This is a democracy, a very proud democracy.

  • It's also very affluent society.

  • They found they had a very large number of infections at the beginning, but a relatively small number of deaths.

  • What have they done that others haven't?

  • Well, South Korea recently, maybe three or four years ago, as you'll remember, had a major outbreak of Merced Corona virus of over 300 people infected from this one person who entered.

  • They had a lesson.

  • They learned that lesson and they prepared for the next one.

  • Finally, two or three of a very brief question with hopefully, a brief answer, Where do you think we will be by the end of the summer?

  • David Heyman.

  • I don't know where we'll be, and I think it would be false to say we do know.

  • What I do know, though, is that other respiratory infections decrease in transmissibility in the summer months, and hopefully this infection will do the same.

  • John Edmonds.

  • I agree.

  • I think we can't say with any accuracy where we'll be at the end of the summer.

  • I don't think that the summer holiday that that warm weather is likely to reduce the transmission of this virus.

  • It's spreading very effectively in lots of warm countries around the world right now.

  • So I don't think that's gonna be our salvation on Debbie Street are finally to you.

  • Well, I'm going to give an optimistic scenario that we actually hopefully have an antiviral.

  • We have a lot of repurposing drug trials, and so actually we can have a better treatment to offer individuals who are very ill.

  • Wonderful.

  • Thank you very much for a bit of optimism.

  • The Debbie Street are John Edmonds and David Hayward.

  • Thank you to all three of you, a note of optimism there, But there could be months of struggle first, no more so than in America, fast becoming the epicenter of the outbreak on where Donald Trump described himself as a wartime president vying total victory over the virus.

  • Well, one man who knows all about America going to war is retired four star general Stanley McChrystal, who served as commander of U.

  • S and NATO forces in Afghanistan.

  • He's now advising the city of Boston in its response to the outbreak.

  • Let me start off with a kind of poignant comparison to you.

  • Does this remind you?

  • It'll this crisis off the kind of wars that you've been dealing with in the past?

  • Well, in many ways, it does on several levels.

  • First we're dealing with in a more festive, viral like enemy that seems to be everywhere.

  • It's not, but it seems that way, and it's hard to get your arms around it and it's frightening.

  • And the second things is, it takes a whole of nation approach to combat this just like insurgency or terrorism.

  • You don't find it with a few military people.

  • You fight it with an effort that's diplomacy, economics, social and then apart military.

  • So it's really gonna be a whole of nation.

  • In fact, I would are you a whole of globe approach.

  • We just heard from a bunch of scientists that this lock down could last for a very long time, albeit in slightly different versions.

  • Is the rial war that we're fighting here, one with our own expectations.

  • And how tough is that?

  • The lock down or versions of social distancing, as they call it, is the only thing ultimately that will flatten the curve and give us a better outcome.

  • And yet that takes every single individual to make a conscious effort every single day.

  • In some ways, that's actually good for the nation.

  • Because I studied the Montgomery bus boycott in the 1950 part of the American civil rights movement.

  • What they found was strongest was when they asked people involved to do something every day that reinforced their support for the cause.

  • I think the worst thing we could do is tell people go about your lives.

  • Don't worry about it.

  • We'll let the help care professionals deal with it.

  • This gives us a sense that not only is it affecting us, but we can all do something for it.

  • It's not monumental, but social distancing is a sacrifice.

  • You know, you were a general in Iraq and in Afghanistan these were societies that America and the West wanted to reshape to some extent in their own image, and it didn't work so well To what extent do you think this particular war against the virus will reshape our societies and what we look like at the end of it?

  • I think this is just going to reshape us more than we think it is.

  • I know in the work realm now that people in the United States air working from home largely many organizations air, finding that a large part of what they do can easily be done from home.

  • So in reality, I think there's not going to be a return to the status quo Ante, I think we're going to go to a new normal and those organizations that adapt quickest, they're going to be very, very advantaged as we go forward now.

  • Much of the focus has, of course, been on the N.

  • H s.

  • And just a few weeks ago, the prime minister told the nation that this was like a war against an invisible enemy.

  • But many N HS doctors and nurses feel that they've been sent into battle with guns, but just not enough bullets, such as the absence of widespread testing and peopIe gear that was their fear back in the mid February before the storm and even broken.

  • Now, as we fast approach the eye of the storm that is still there fear, as we found out in an exclusive survey for Channel four news of more than 280 N.

  • H s workers, loud and clear yet again is the lack of peopIe.

  • 80% told us that they don't feel they have adequate personal protective equipment to keep themselves all their patients safe.

  • Run out on every shift, having to reuse marsanne voices a thin plastic penny on a surgical face mask is a joke and not upto World Health Organization's standards.

  • Despite all those government assurances that peopIe is getting through, almost 2/3 of staff told us school sent goggles and made face mask with the laminate.

  • I packed my dad's musky uses for building just in case way have no faith in the N.

  • H s supplies, so have tried to soar stock Privately.

  • One order is due to be shipped directly from China for visors, on masks and without that vital protection.

  • This is what they all fear getting and spreading the virus of themselves.

  • Nearly 1/3 responded that they'd had covered 19 type symptoms on gone into isolation.

  • I had flu like symptoms and a cough on was advised to come in and I still have symptoms after 10 days, despite returning to work on being denied a test by management and the trouble is without testing, who knows whether they've actually had it or whether it is safe to return to work.

  • There's been much criticism of the government this week, and in our survey, 87% told us that testing still wasn't freely available to them.

  • The N hs organizations have told us that over 30 million PEOPIE kits have been made available to frontline staff on the new guidance for its use has now been issued well, joining me now to NSS doctors, both of whom demonstrate the danger faced by frontline medics in the current crisis.

  • Dr.

  • Clare Gerada called Covert 19 but has now recovered her stuff for working at the New Nightingale Hospital in the capital on Dr Sonia Oddy.

  • Sarah is on call today at her North London hospital.

  • She has just returned, having been in isolation after also showing symptoms of the virus.

  • From your point of view, what's next for your part of the N hs Claire.