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Reader's letter: A lack of forward planning

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I expect that in December last year no one could have seen how 2020 would have panned out, even though our health authorities and their medical and scientific advisers would have been aware that the World Health Organisation had indicated the first of the covid-19 cases had been confirmed in France in December 2019.

The first UK cases were reported in January and February but the UK government only announced there would be a lockdown in March.

Given the number of previous world epidemics, one might have thought the Department of Health would have had some form of forward planning for such a worldwide event, but in May the Prime Minister stated there was no coherent plan to combat covid-19.

Instead, we have been lurching between numerous attempts to stem this deadly virus ­— herd immunity was suggested, a world-beating track-and-trace system introduced ­— and the consequences relating to the economy, businesses and people’s livelihoods of lockdown.

We also appear to have had inconsistent and sometimes confusing communications that often lack detail. Too many spokesmen, and even medical and scientific advisers do not always agree with each other.

Having entered the tier three system, this was then overturned with yet another lockdown, which clearly shows the lack of preparation and planning.

And the factual information put out by the government appears to be national rather than giving a clear picture of what is actually happening in individual regions.

There still appears to be a north/south divide, despite the PM’s claim to be levelling up.

After years of austerity, the current crisis and the deal for Brexit, will this administration be able to cope with all of the issues each of them has and will cause to the public at large ­— a diminishing economy, unemployment, homelessness and businesses going to the wall, as well as the mental health problems that will result?

A lack of forward planning usually ends in failure. ­— A. M. WADDINGTON, The Meerings, Sutton-on-Trent.

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