Boris Johnson is urging us to take ‘personal responsibility’ over Covid-19 – so should the government

Editorial: There are obvious reasons to ease restrictions, but the prime minister should not dismiss calls from scientists to think hard about what happens on 19 July

Sunday 04 July 2021 22:45

The prime minister is set to tell the nation that we should “learn to live” with Covid-19, as the government shifts towards a mantra of personal responsibility over the virus.

The announcement by Boris Johnson follows in the wake of Sajid Javid, the new health secretary, saying that we are on course for restrictions to be loosened on 19 July, but he also confirmed that we should expect case numbers to rise significantly – comments that have alarmed scientists.

We will, Mr Javid argued over the weekend, have to accept the existence of Covid, just as we do with the annual flu outbreaks. Under his predecessor, Matt Hancock, the emphasis was on the need to contain the disease. Now it is to live with it.

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