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To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will cite the scientific and public health evidence that they used to justify the blanket restriction on the movement of people with no underlying health conditions outside their own homes; and what consideration they gave to the alternative of introducing measures to ensure people without underlying health conditions maintained social distancing and wore personal protective equipment to prevent infection to themselves and others but were otherwise free to move as they desired.
The Government has published the scientific evidence supporting its action on social distancing. In the document, Potential effect of non-pharmaceutical interventions on a COVID-19 epidemic in the UK 26 February 2020, the Scientific Pandemic Influenza Group on Modelling assessed four different response options. It outlined that social distancing for 13 weeks could reduce the peak by up to 50-60%, showing that this measure would have the largest impact than the other proposed measures in containing the outbreak. A copy of Potential effect of non-pharmaceutical interventions on a COVID-19 epidemic in the UK 26 February 2020 is attached.
The Government continues to be led by the evidence in our response to COVID-19. Following the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies’ advice, we think there will be some benefit for people wearing face coverings for epidemiological reasons and for giving people confidence as we return to work.
We will set out plans soon on what role face coverings may have as we look towards easing any lockdown measures.