Once more headlining the non-essential industries and favouring them over SNP Government health concerns, days before the election, BBC Scotland remembers only selectively what the 4 Nations approach achieved last year at this time – mass infection and death.
They open with:
Scotland should align itself with other UK nations when deciding when to allow holidays abroad, a travel industry representative has said. Alan Glen, from the Scottish Passenger Agents Association, said there was “no way” it would work if Scotland had a different system to England. Non-essential travel abroad will be allowed from England from 17 May. However, the Scottish government has not yet said when this restriction will be relaxed in Scotland.
So, the SNP administration is more cautious than the Conservative one in England and that’s bad?
40% more deaths and nearly twice twice the infection rate over the pandemic and we should follow their lead again?
Here’s just one example of what the 4 Nations approach did for us in March 2020, from the BMJ:
“We have to take the right steps at the right time.” That’s the message the UK government has repeated when asked why stricter measures to control the spread of covid-19 weren’t implemented in early March. This was often followed by what became the catchphrase of the pandemic response: “We’re following the science.”
As Italy announced a countrywide lockdown on 9 March, people wondered why the UK wasn’t following suit. At that time Italy had over 9000 cases of covid-19 and nearly 500 deaths, up from 153 cases and three deaths two weeks earlier. Many people were calling for prompt action in the UK, which had had four deaths up to 9 March. But the UK’s lockdown didn’t come until 23 March, a delay that many people claim has cost lives.
Speaking at a live televised briefing on 9 March, England’s chief medical officer, Chris Whitty, said, “It is not just a matter of what you do but when you do it. Anything we do, we have got to be able to sustain. Once we have started these things we have to continue them through the peak, and there is a risk that, if we go too early, people will understandably get fatigued and it will be difficult to sustain this over time.”
What’s the evidence for Whitty’s thesis?
Writing in The BMJ,4 Susan Michie, professor of health psychology, and Robert West, emeritus professor of health psychology—both members of SPI-B—said that the term “behavioural fatigue” was “an ill-defined new term that had no basis in behavioural science.”
They added, “Common sense understanding is not enough and can often lead to interventions that are at best wasteful and at worst counterproductive . . . For example, the common sense idea of ‘behavioural fatigue’ and concern that locking down too early may lead to widespread non-adherence later, was invoked in the UK for justification of the catastrophic delay of strict social distancing measures in the UK.”
Would you trust England to lead again on this one?