Experts say new treatments and local lockdowns will keep coronavirus under ...

A second wave of Covid-19 in Britain would not be nearly as bad as the first because we are better at containing and treating the virus now, Government officials have claimed.

The experts believe a combination of local lockdowns, social distancing measures and medical breakthroughs would substantially reduce both the death rate and number of cases.

Hopes are also high that vaccines could be available as early as next spring, with a ‘long pipeline’ of promising jabs being trialled.

Government officials believe that while cases are on the rise again, the curve will be flatter when compared with March and April. Pictured: Health Secretary Matt Hancock on September 14

Government officials believe that while cases are on the rise again, the curve will be flatter when compared with March and April. Pictured: Health Secretary Matt Hancock on September 14

In addition, early signs from the southern hemisphere indicate that any flu outbreak will be less severe than in previous years.

It comes as top Belgium scientist Jean-Luc Gala said Belgium's rising infection rate is 'completely normal' and ongoing lockdown measures should be relaxed.

He told French-language newspaper La Dernière Heure that 'people no longer suffer from the coronavirus, but measures to stop it.'

He said people should not worry as the virus 'is circulating in a category that does not suffer from it, young people who will at worst have small symptoms, at best nothing at all'.

He said people who the virus only midly affects becoming infected is beneficial as it contributes to wide-spread immunity. 

Ministers had been concerned that a combination of flu and corona cases would prove catastrophic for the NHS this winter.

However, officials also expect that advice on hygiene and social distancing during the corona pandemic will suppress flu rates – as will the trend for working from home and avoiding public transport. 

In Australia and New Zealand – which typically provide good indicators of how the flu will develop in the UK – cases have remained low compared with last year.

Appearing before the Foreign Affairs Committee, Dr David Nabarro (pictured) told MPs: ‘It’s a terrible situation... a health issue has got so out of control it’s knocking the world into not just a recession but a huge economic contraction'

Appearing before the Foreign Affairs Committee, Dr David Nabarro (pictured) told MPs: ‘It’s a terrible situation... a health issue has got so out of control it’s knocking the world into not just a recession but a huge economic contraction'

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When Spain, France and Belgium hit 18 cases per 100,000 (which the UK did at the start of September) they then saw admissions increase by up to four-fold. But Belgium was able to reduce its hospital rate by reintroducing tough measures

When Spain, France and Belgium

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