Matt Hancock ‘Second wave rolling across Europe’

by birtanpublished on August 17, 2020

I i wonder minister whether you might be able to confirm the reports this morning that self-isolation for those who are symptomatic covered 19 symptomatic is to be extended from seven to ten days well this is a decision that's

Clinically led the chief medical officer will be setting out details later today what i would say is that i i can't steal his thunder but what i will say is that we will always do

What is necessary to protect people and we we we are guided by the clinical judgments by the science in this as it as across the board i i understand the desire not to not to steal uh jonathan van tam's thunder but at the

Same time it's all over the papers this morning someone in government someone in your department is presumably briefing this stuff i'm just wondering why you know you're

Happy to tell print journalists about it but you're not happy to tell broadcast journalists about it i mean on a related topic yesterday we heard in the papers that boris johnson is worried about a second

Wave this morning in the papers more anonymous briefing suggesting that the scientists are if you're worried about a second wave why aren't you telling us why are we

Getting all this behind the scenes briefing going on what's we're in the middle of a vinyl pandemic well i am i am worried about a second wave i think you can see a

Second wave starting to roll across europe and we've got to do everything we can to prevent it from reaching these shores and to tackle it and you know the measures that the chief

Medical officer will set out later are part of that but so too are the measures that we're taking uh for instance to ensure that we don't directly uh bring cases back to this country

Where there's a big spike in cases for instance as we saw in spain we keep those quarantine those quarantine rules under review all of the time and we'll be we're taking action and we

Will take action if it is needed to keep this country safe so absolutely on a on a second wave it is something that i i i worry about and i worry about it because we can see it happening

You know around the rest of the world outside of europe there are clearly a very sharp increases in the number of cases in places like brazil mexico india and other places

But but but but closer to home in europe including in some of the countries that we had exempted from quarantine because their cases were so low we're seeing that come up and we won't hesitate to act

I apologize if there's a touch of frustration edging into my tone because to be honest with you i just like to know things before other people but another piece of briefing put to the telegraph yesterday

You know ministers looking to reduce uh the 14-day quarantine period for people coming into the united kingdom i mean is that true well we're always looking to how we can we can have the least possible burden of

The measures that we have to put into place so that is something on which uh we're doing some work but we will only come forward with a proposal when it is when we are confident that it

Is it is safe to do so so again this is a very much guided by the clinical science um and the cmo will be speaking on it later today but the broader point is that

There is a serious concern about a second wave that's clearly now moving across europe and we need to take action and action to protect this country and protect everybody in it

And if that means increasing the number of days that people who tested positive have to self-isolate then so be it because these measures are necessary to keep people safe

Here's one that i'm sure you can answer is it the case as is also being reported in some of the papers this morning that they are number and the south west and the south east of england is now above one that we are seeing

Exponential growth again well it's uh we these public these figures are published by the statisticians and there'll be another publication tomorrow um and i'm not going to

Prejudge again what the statisticians say because it's important to do this properly but we have seen that the number of cases which was coming down uh pretty sharply that has flattened off

The number of people who have uh positive cases um and we follow these things very very closely but i think you can see from what i'm saying that we have significant concerns about the

Second wave that is coming across europe and uh it's you know it's not just spain you mentioned spain but there are other countries too where the number of cases is rising and we're absolutely determined

To do everything that we can to keep this country safe and to make sure that we are protected from it i i wonder mr how concerned you are about the story on the front of the mail

And actually picked up in a number of places this morning that in terms of access to gp surgeries nine out of ten people these days are having their consultation over the phone via video call or so on i

Mean are you happy with that state of affairs given how long it's been since you said that the nhs should start getting back to normal i'm incredibly pleased with the increase

In the number of people who are able to access their gp uh whether online or by the phone is one of the big changes that we've seen and we've seen it right across the board

And in the same way that you know people are working from home more far more people are choosing to uh to talk to their gp either so is this the new normal then is this

The new normal in terms of accessing gps gp services that we should expect just as a matter of course that we will be doing it not face to face but in the main all over video of course the

Face-to-face appointment needs to be there for people who who need it and there's many many medical procedures that you simply can't do online or over the phone um and um

But the increase in the number of people who want to access their gp by video call or on the phone and the increase in the number of gps who offer those services you know the number offering video conferencing has gone

From under 10 to almost 100 during this crisis that is a good thing now the figures specifically that you mentioned in some of the newspapers i don't recognize

Again there's the statistics on this coming out later this week but but at the moment it's about 50 50 if you look at the latest stats that is radically up from where it was before the crisis

And this is one of the good things that's happened it's also on the whole very popular both amongst gps and their teams in the practices and amongst patients now of course some people don't want to do that and they

Want to have a face-to-face gp appointment and that will always be available but for the vast majority of people who would prefer to be able to do it

That way the fact that it's now very widely available is a very good thing and i'll be saying more about this in my speech later today mr hancock whilst i have you i'm always on the lookout for interesting job

Opportunities one has been put on the gov uk website yeah a broadcaster coming in to handle televised media briefings now you know a scottish accent always works well in circumstances which

Are fairly combative what is the point of this rule i mean isn't it just another layer between you know the people and the politicians why are we i'd rather speak to you

Than some well richard medley if he's and still in line for the job well uh now um after this interview i i'll put your name forward i i uh you know i think you've got enough on your

Already hell secretary believe me people love seeing you on there on their screen so i'll take that up that's a it's a matter for number 10. i'll take it up with them healthcare lovely to see you this morning thanks for being with

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