This is now a pandemic of testing, not illness

There is growing tension in Britain’s Covid politics, according to Telegraph columnist Allison Pearson and co-host of the weekly Planet Normal podcast.

“They don’t want us to relax and think it’s like this now, which for most people is mainly a cold, but then they start lifting the measures,” she says, citing Wednesday’s announcement that government guidelines no longer apply require asymptomatic individuals who test positive on a lateral flow test to perform confirmatory PCR.

“It suggests they know full well it’s not that bad,” she tells the podcast, which you can listen to with the audio player above.

“We have a terrible shortage of staff everywhere, so they can no longer justify people taking this second test and being unable to work.”

After a much-vaunted vaccine rollout plan, the UK is now experiencing “a pandemic of testing, not a pandemic of disease”, according to Pearson.

Podcast co-host and Telegraph columnist Liam Halligan is quick to point out that the country is conducting 10 times more testing than Germany. “It’s absolutely incredible,” he says without a shred of praise.

“That’s why our cases are so high.”

He appeals to his fellow journalists: “When does a lobby correspondent say to the Prime Minister or to Jonathan Van-Tam or Chris Whitty: ‘Why are we doing ten times more tests than Germany?'”

Listen to Planet Normal, a weekly Telegraph podcast featuring news and views from beyond the bubble, with the audio player above or below Apple Podcasts, Spotify or your favorite podcast app. This is now a pandemic of testing, not illness

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