Dr Hilary warns 50,000 Covid cases a DAY could be recorded this week as new variant is 'breeding ground'

DR HILARY has warned Brits to expect 50,000 Covid cases every day this week – and says stage four of the roadmap will turn the country into a "breeding ground".

The medic made the grim prediction as Susanna Reid and Richard Madeley clashed over wearing masks on Good Morning Britain today.

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It comes after the Prime Minister yesterday forecast a similar number of cases by July 19 – and said: "We must reconcile ourselves, sadly, to more deaths from Covid."

While Madeley insisted the vaccine has "broken the link" between infections, hospitalisations and deaths, Dr Hilary said there's a long road out of the pandemic ahead.

It comes as:

  • Freedom could last just weeks – as Sage experts warn of more restrictions in autumn and winter
  • The PM has urged Brits to cheer on the Three Lions 'sensibly' tomorrow
  • Chris Whitty reveals the three times the public should still wear a mask after July 19
  • Sajid Javid says school bubbles will end on July 19
  • Germany lifts travel restrictions for double-jabbed Brits

Opening today's show Susanna said she feels "very wary" about ditching masks.

She told her co-host: "If I'm concerned about masks and you're not, and we're in the same shop and you're not bothered, I'm wearing my mask and you're getting protection, but you're not wearing your mask and I'm not getting protection."

Richard replied that although he's glad the PM has dropped the directive on face coverings, he'll continue to wear one until he "senses people out there are comfortable getting back to normal".

"It's good manners not to spook other people," he said.

But Dr Hilary warned the end of restrictions will cause an explosion of cases – adding: "We're very arrogant in this country".

"We're putting far too much faith in the vaccination," he said.

"We'd be in a great position if we were only dealing with the Alpha and Kent variants, but actually we're dealing with the Delta, which is much more transmissible.

"We're going to have 50,000 cases probably in another few days."

And as Richard argued that most of the new cases will be in people who haven't received both jabs, Dr Hilary replied: "We have a factory, a breeding ground, for another variant – what would you say, Richard, if another variant came along which is transmissible and is resistant to the vaccine?"

"If it's resistant to the vaccine, then we have a problem," the host said, but added: "How much longer are we going to go on fearing the possibility of another variant?"

Last night, Boris Johnson declared an end to social distance rules and limits on how many people can meet up after 480 long days.

He will scrap almost all other regulations.

In just two weeks’ time, there will be no punishment or fines for mixing indoors in large groups in England for the first time since March 2020.

The rule of six will be scrapped and mass gatherings will be allowed outside for the first time in 18 months.

There will be no legal requirement to wear a mask on trains or in shops for the first time since last June, and no fiddly QR code check-ins at pubs.

Defying critics who say Freedom Day should be delayed because of rising Covid cases, BoJo told the nation it was “now or never to unlock” thanks to the vaccine keeping deaths low.

Hailing the end to “government diktats”, the PM said now was the time for “careful and balanced individual judgements” as we learn to live with the bug.

He said he would continue to wear a mask out of choice in crowded places as a “common courtesy” to others.

It will remain illegal to defy orders to self-isolate on testing positive for Covid or coming into contact with a patient without being double jabbed.

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