Dame Jenny Harries, who became a household name during Covid, has admitted there will be no new mandatory lockdown in the event of a future pandemic.
Harries, who now heads up the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA), said that whilst the UK is facing a number of different health threats, a full-scale lockdown like Britain saw in 2020 and 2021 is unlikely.
The public health offical stated that the largest infectious disease the UK is currently facing is pandemic flu.
Aside the threat of Covid and respiratory diseases, the health expert said the UK should be wary of other conditions such as obesity which could impact the population’s overall health.
She also said issues such as climate change and antibiotic resistance were contributing to the UK’s “cumulative and growing” health security risk.
Last month, Harries opened a new vaccine development centre to tackle covid strains as well as other diseased ahead of a new outbreak.
She launched a “100 day mission” to create vaccines for various diseases, including “Disease X”, a currently unknown future threat.
Harries suggested that if another pandemic reared its head, the UK would not implement a mandatory lockdown
Speaking at the launch of the Vaccine Development and Evaluation Centre (VDEC) last month, she said: “The risks are growing around climate change and urbanisation.
“As well as building on the legacy of the pandemic caused by Covid-19, VDEC will target a wide range of other deadly viruses and pathogens, helping to secure the health and prosperity of the UK and saving lives around the world.”