Covid-19 Update - Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 1:58 pm on 6th July 2021.

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Photo of Lord Bethell Lord Bethell The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care 1:58 pm, 6th July 2021

I am not comfortable with any deaths. The suggestion that we are going into any of this with a sanguine, devil-may-care attitude is quite wrong. We approach the matter with extreme caution. But many people are dying because they have missed their cancer appointments. There will be people who die of flu this winter; there will be many people who die of all manner of diseases. We cannot focus only on Covid—we cannot make it the sole priority of our healthcare system and our entire economy. At some point we need to move on.

We will remain extremely cautious; we have all sorts of back-up resources in place that we can pivot to should there be an escalation of Covid hospitalisations and deaths. I do not need to list from the Dispatch Box any of the things we are all worried about. This is the right decision right now; it is proportionate, and it gives us the space to address the many other health issues we have as a nation.