Coronavirus vaccine may never arrive according to lockdown roadmap

11 May 2020, 15:58 | Updated: 11 May 2020, 16:10

By Seán Hickey

The government's lockdown release plan has revealed that the UK must prepare for the possibility of a vaccine never being developed.

LBC's Westminster correspondent Ben Kentish went through the UK's coronavirus release plan with a fine toothed comb and found some stark revelations.

Ben reminded listeners that the Chief Medical Officer for England Chris Whitty has warned the public at every press conference that "we're in this or the long haul."

The long haul, as Ben had found through his reading of the government's 50-page document could well be as long as 18 months of living cautiously with coronavirus in the UK. The document also sets the record straight on the prospect of a vaccine.

"The idea that a vaccine is inevitable in the next 18 months - it is not" Ben stated. He added that a vaccine, according to the release plan is not the only answer to the pandemic that the government is looking at.

"What is important to say is that there will be other developments to help us deal with this" he said.

The government's lockdown release plan warns against relying on a vaccine for Covid-19
The government's lockdown release plan warns against relying on a vaccine for Covid-19. Picture: PA

LBC's Westminster correspondent pointed out from the document that "more effective drug treatments are more likely to come much quicker than a vaccine" and the government will give all treatments equal attention. Ben pointed out that based off previous attempts to find vaccines for other coronaviruses we can say that it isn't a given that a vaccine will be found.

He added that "coronavirus won't just go away, it is here to stay" and Boris Johnson's document is outlining this, planning for coronavirus to live amongst the population. He pointed out that the plan is to "make it a bad case of the flu than the potentially lethal virus than it is now."

Ben highlighted this point as a "dose of realism from the Prime Minister" adding that "even if the virus doesn't go away, it wont be quite as difficult as it has been in the last few weeks."

As Ben put it, the objective, based off the document is that if the world cannot find a way to eradicate coronavirus, we will find a way to live alongside it.

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