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UK coronavirus live: two-week ‘circuit break’ considered to halt Covid surge in England

Health secretary Matt Hancock refuses to rule out second national lockdown as ‘last line of defence’ UK test and trace ‘barely functional’ as 11 milli

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Health secretary Matt Hancock refuses to rule out second national lockdown as ‘last line of defence’

Health secretory Matt Hancock said has been doing the media rounds this morning following reports that the UK could go into a second national lockdown in October.

Hancock told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme that the government is keen to avoid national lockdown altogether, describing it as “the last line of defence.

I have learned over the last nine months not ever to rule anything out. However, it is not the proposal that’s on the table.

This is a big moment for the country. We are seeing an acceleration in the number of cases. And we are also seeing that the number of people hospitalised with coronavirus is doubling every eight days We are now starting to see the effects in hospital.

Morning, I’m Aamna Mohdin and I’ll be covering the UK liveblog today.

Leading scientists who sit on UK government’s advisory board have proposed a two-week national lockdown in England in October to try to tackle the rising number of coronavirus cases, the Financial Times reports. The second national lockdown could coincide with the October school half-term, so it has a limited impact on education.

Related: Leeds poised to join list of areas under local coronavirus lockdowns

Related: Covid-19: UK test and trace ‘barely functional’ as 11 million face lockdown

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