On November 6th, 2023, an intriguing article penned by the ‘In-house doctor’ in the Daily Sceptic shed light on an email exchange between Neil Ferguson, Patrick Vallance, and Chris Whitty, dated March 15th, 2020. In one of these emails, Ferguson projected that nearly 469,896 individuals would require hospitalization, with 182,749 of them needing ICU beds.
In a surprising turn of events, the first lockdown, which led to a significant reduction in hospital in-patients, resulted in historically low bed occupancy rates. This surplus of hospital capacity seemingly allowed for activities like TikTok dance rehearsals.
The article suggests that it was Ferguson’s alarmist forecasts and pressure from Dominic Cummings that prompted Vallance and Whitty to pivot from the established approach of mitigation and safeguarding vulnerable populations towards the untested and radical Chinese Communist Party-inspired lockdown.
Interestingly, the article speculates that the very day these emails were written might have marked the peak of transmission and infection during the initial wave in the UK, a point that the Hallett Inquiry may have overlooked.
This shift in strategy could have presented a situation where any action taken by Johnson, Hancock, Whitty, Vallance, and their cohorts would have appeared justified, as infections were already on a downward trajectory irrespective of government intervention.
Professor Simon Wood’s paper meticulously outlined that the infection peak occurred before the lockdown measures were implemented. Fraser Nelson, Editor of the Spectator, further explored this revelation in a June 5th, 2020 article, highlighting similar observations in Norway. Additionally, Chris Whitty informed MPs the following month that the R rate had already dropped below one before or around March 23rd.
Here is a visual representation of the Government’s Coronavirus Dashboard chart for daily deaths in England from March 15th to April 18th, 2020.
An ONS paper delved into the time frames between COVID-19 infection, symptom onset, hospitalizations, and death. It revealed:
- The period between COVID-19 infection and symptom onset ranged from one to 14 days, with an average of five to six days.
- The median delay between symptom onset and hospital admission varied depending on factors like age and residency in a nursing home, ranging from one to 6.7 days.
- Time between symptom onset and death from COVID-19 spanned from two to eight weeks, with reported median times of 16 or 19 days.
By applying these timeframes and working backwards from the ‘peak deaths day’ of April 8th, it is deduced that the ‘onset of symptoms’ likely peaked around March 20th to 23rd, which interestingly preceded the onset of infections by one to six days – roughly around March 15th to 20th, just prior to the initiation of the first lockdown on March 23rd.
While hindsight provides clarity, it’s worth noting that back in March 2020, Ferguson, Vallance, Whitty, and their colleagues didn’t have access to this data. However, by mid-April, it became evident that infections did not align with Ferguson’s projections, indicating that lockdowns rode an existing downward trend rather than causing it.
It’s crucial to remember that lockdowns were an unconventional and untested measure. While panic may have influenced the decision in March 2020, it raises questions about the rationale behind subsequent lockdowns in November 2020 and January 2021, and the ongoing defense of this strategy.