The chief medical officer for England, Professor Chris Whitty (pictured), urged vulnerable individuals to consider the ‘practicalities’ of where they are travelling
Pensioners were today warned they should think twice about going on holiday to coronavirus-hit countries with ‘very weak’ health services.
The chief medical officer for England, Professor Chris Whitty, urged vulnerable individuals to consider the ‘practicalities’ of where they are travelling.
The advice came as Prof Whitty took questions at a press conference alongside Boris Johnson and UK chief scientific officer Sir Patrick Vallance.
Prof Whitty and Sir Patrick played down the risk to healthy Britons of going abroad, with the chief scientist pointing out that if coronavirus spreads in the UK it ‘doesn’t make any sense to say you are at more risk anywhere else than you are here’.
But Prof Whitty said there were a few countries where pensioners and the vulnerable should be wary of travelling to.
‘If you happen to be in a place with a very weak health service at the peak of their epidemic, weaker than the NHS, that obviously might be more problematic,’ he said.
‘They might want to think through the practicalities of being in a place that has a health service that is weaker than the NHS.’
Prof Whitty stressed that although the elderly are at higher risk from coronavirus, the ‘great majority’ survive.
‘Even for the highest risk group, the great majority of people will survive this.
‘If you look at the Chinese data, if you take the very oldest people, the great majority survive.’
He added: ‘If you’re talking about the low-risk groups, the rate of mortality is well below 1 per cent.’
The advice came as Prof Whitty took questions at a press conference alongside Boris Johnson (centre) and UK chief scientific officer Sir Patrick Vallance (right)