He replied: ‘I think another wave is possible, likely even. I guess the difference is that another wave will cause substantially fewer deaths and hospitalisations because of high levels of vaccination across the sorts of people who would have ended up in hospital or unfortunately dying if they haven’t been vaccinated.
‘So the consequences of another wave are less. I think the challenge is of course we don’t know exactly how much less.
‘We know some people are still not vaccinated, because the uptake hasn’t been complete. We know the vaccine isn’t 100% effective, although it’s very good.’
Dr Mike Tildesley, a member of the Spi-M modelling group which advises the Government, said there was a danger that new variants could jeopardise the vaccination programme later in the year.
Meanwhile, Government sources have cautioned the UK needs to be wary of what is happening in Europe ‘because in the past that has led to a rise here a few weeks later’ – although how things will pan out remains uncertain.
The UK is currently steaming ahead with its vaccination programme with more than half of the adult population being given at least one dose.
However, the country will soon face a vaccine shortage, with over 40s warned they could have to wait until May for their jabs.
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