Public Health: Coronavirus Regulations

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 2:19 pm on 13th October 2020.

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Photo of Matthew Hancock Matthew Hancock Secretary of State for Health and Social Care 2:19 pm, 13th October 2020

Yes. The introduction of the three-level system means that, in some areas where the local area has been working so effectively to get the curve flattened, as in the west midlands, under the leadership of Andy Street—there has been a rise in the past few days of data, but essentially a huge amount of progress has been made—changes have had to be made. However, I will absolutely recommit to working with Andy Street, who is an incredibly effective voice for the west midlands, to make sure that what we can do together can best deliver to control the virus in the west midlands. I pay tribute to my right hon. Friend, who makes the case on this so effectively, because protecting our economy and protecting our health are not alternatives. We must act and keep the virus under control to protect lives and livelihoods. I strongly believe that every one of us, young or old, has the ability to suppress the virus through the actions we take and the best way to protect the vulnerable, support the NHS and protect the economy is to get the rate of transmission down.

I turn to the steps we are taking to do that and, therefore, the instruments before the House today. Yesterday, the Prime Minister provided an update on the measures we are taking, which centre on three local covid alert levels in England.