While acknowledging the mental health impact of lockdown, England’s chief medical officer asserted that the pandemic restrictions, which have been in place on and off for a year, have “improved life” for some people.
Professor Chris Whitty made the comments while addressing the Public Health Conference 2021.
While recognizing that people were exercising less and drinking more as a result of lockdown and that domestic abuse had increased, the professor argued that many people have actually enjoyed lockdown.
“For some people lockdown has either made no difference or in some cases – if you actually look at the academic literature and surveys – has even improved life, interestingly,” said Whitty.
Whitty went on to add that due to new variant strains and vaccine supply shortages, there will likely be a third wave of coronavirus either later this year or next winter, meaning lockdown restrictions are likely to return.
As we previously highlighted, another public health official said masks and other social distancing restrictions are likely to remain in place for years because the public has become used to them.
Many have suggested that high levels of support for lockdown is a form of Stockholm Syndrome, although the fact that most people’s wages were covered by a government furlough scheme, allowing them to stay at home and avoid work in some cases, is definitely also a factor.
Weeks after the first lockdown was introduced last year, a poll found that 9 out of 10 Brits wanted to see it continued.
Another more recent poll found that that over half of Brits say they will miss either “some” or “many” aspects of lockdown.
Aside from the mental health impact and the untold numbers of future deaths as a result of people having missed treatment and screenings for serious illnesses, the UK’s economy contracted the most in 300 years as a result of the lockdown, leading to 726,000 job losses.