In the Daily Telegraph today, something many of us have known for a long time – the UK’s death toll in the pandemic was the highest in Europe because of a failure to lockdown quickly and, in particular, save care home residents.
The suggestion that the PM ‘was let down by scientific advisers‘ is, of course, only partly true in that he and at least his chief political adviser, Dominic Cummings, were strongly predisposed to want the ‘business-friendly’ advice that the virus should be allowed to run through the population, creating herd immunity and as the PM famously said of any deaths, that we should ‘take it on the chin‘, in a Battle of Britain spirit:
In Scotland too, on the 16th March, the National Clinical Director seemed to be on board with same idea:
Leitch has since distanced himself from the notion and claimed that his words were ‘mangled.’ Judge for yourself.
Against that background of expert advice and the fact of devolved control of the pandemic response only being confirmed on the 1st April, 2020, any suggestion that the Scottish Government could have locked down earlier is fanciful:
As early as May 2020, researchers at Edinburgh University had estimated that an earlier lockdown might have prevented 2 000 deaths. Scotland’s media were quick to lay the blame at the door of the SNP administration, conveniently forgetting the facts, above.
Leaving that issue to one side, however, deaths in the second wave from the autumn of 2020 until the present can be fairly compared.
If we begin counting on the 1st of September 2020, Scotland had 2 554 deaths and now has 7 510, so in the second wave had 4 956 deaths. On the 1st September England had 36 936 deaths and now has 110 456, so in the second wave had 73 520.
England has 10 times the population so, all things being equal, adopting Scottish Government strategies, might have been expected to have 49 560 deaths but, tragically, it had 73 520, 48% higher.
This is a significant difference, statistically and in human terms.
Will Johnson fall on his sword? Of course not. New advisers please!
Will Scotland’s MSM tell the people of Scotland about this?