WHO congratulates Britain on slashing Covid infections – but warns 'be super careful'

Brits have been praised by the World Health Organisation (WHO) for slashing the rate of Covid infections, as Prime Minister Boris Johnson today loosened restriction.

Despite this the group highlighted that the UK is not quite out of the woods and warned that the country still needs to be “super careful”.

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So far in the UK over 42,000 people have died from the virus and in recent weeks cases have dropped.

The WHO’s spokesperson Margaret Harris said people should remain cautious and continue to stick to government guidelines.

Speaking on BBC Radio 4's Today programme she said the lesson for people is to understand that this is “the year of living differently”.

“Not, ‘OK, it’s over’. You haven’t just been let out of school.”

“You have done well. You have really brought down your numbers. The UK has brought a very difficult outbreak right down.

“Very good news in the last couple of days about the limitation in cases, and far, far fewer people dying. So now is the moment to celebrate that by being super careful.”

Her comments come as Mr Johnson today revealed that life will start to get back to a new normal in the UK, with many hospitality businesses once again being able to open from July 4.

During a briefing this afternoon the Prime Minister said people need to remain responsible and should continue to wash their hands more often.

This pandemic has inflicted permanent scars and we mourn everyone we have lost

He announced that the two metre social distancing rule will be scrapped and instead people will be allowed to be one metre apart.

The Prime Minister did however head caution as he said local measures may be reinstated if cases rise again.

Speaking in the Commons, Mr Johnson told MPs that progress in tackling the virus meant steps could be taken to "safely ease the lockdown", but "caution will remain our watchword".

He said the current belief is that there is no risk of a second peak, however the government would "not hesitate to apply the brakes and re-introduce restrictions even at national level – if required".



He told MPs: "The number of new infections is now declining by between two and four percent every day.

"This pandemic has inflicted permanent scars and we mourn everyone we have lost.

"While we remain vigilant, we do not believe there is currently a risk of a second peak of infections that might overwhelm the NHS."

He explained that in the first half of May, nearly 69,000 people tested positive for Covid-19 across the UK.

And by the first half of June, that total had fallen by nearly 70 per cent to just under 22,000.

While cases have been falling in the UK they have been on the rise in places such as Germany.

New normal

This could make some people apprehensive to return to normal life.

Northern Ireland secretary Brandon Lewis today stated that people needed to take “self responsibility” and get used to this “new way of living”.

He told the Today programme: “With this virus we’re all going to have to look at the information that’s out there for a long period ahead and make decisions with our own self-responsibility, our own self-awareness, to be safe for ourselves and others.”

“That means looking at the guidelines, making sure we’re washing our hands, following good social distancing rules.”

He added that many people will have to make their own decisions when it comes to the level of risk they are going to take.

He said this would be key at “living with the virus” and allowing people to “get on with life”.

Mr Johnson today added that the "national hibernation" was beginning to end, and "life is returning to our streets".

With guidance replacing legislation, Mr Johnson said he was relying on people using their common sense to limit the spread of the virus.

Officials acknowledged that July 4 was a significant step, but remained a long way away from normal life.


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