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Lockdown could be eased early says UK scientific adviser

BBC, 18 Feb 2021
The success of the vaccination programme has made it possible to consider lifting the Covid restrictions at an earlier stage, according to one of the government's scientific advisors.

Professor Mark Woolhouse told a parliamentary committee at Westminster that there were reasons to be more optimistic because there was more confidence in the scientific data compared to last year.

But other government advisers sounded a far more cautious note. And the prime minister Boris Johnson said he was taking a “data not dates’ approach which would “go in stages”.

Meanwhile In the first trial of its kind in the world dozens of young and healthy volunteers between 18 and 30 years of age will be exposed to the coronavirus in a safe, controlled environment.

The study will begin in the UK following approval from the clinical trials ethics body. Scientists hope it will give them a deeper understanding of the virus.

Huw Edwards presents BBC News at Ten reporting by health editor Hugh Pym, medical editor Fergus Walsh and deputy political editor Vicki Young.

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