Another week has passed with more restrictions piled on – but as lockdown measures become ever more restrictive, the demand for evidence grows. Sir Keir Starmer, for instance, has asked to see evidence for new lockdown measures. In mid-August, Andy Burnham called on the government not to put Oldham into lockdown as Sir Richard Leese, the lead for health in Greater Manchester, pointed out that there is ‘no evidence’ that additional lockdown measures would improve the chances of halting the virus.
Tomorrow, we’re told, there will be more restrictions still. But on what grounds?
The main evidence presented to us by the government is the new daily total for new Covid infections. But how severe are the cases? Severity can be assessed quantitatively starting from the clearest and unquestionable outcome – death.