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modelling expert cautiously optimistic about falling cases

Dr Mike
Tildesley is a member of the government’s Scientific Pandemic Influenza
Modelling group.

He is doing
the media rounds this morning and was asked about UK cases falling five days in
a row.

“Well, I mean the first thing obviously before I
start is it is good news. Any situation where cases are falling clearly is
good news. So, I’ll say that up front before I start caveats,” he told the BBC
Radio 4 Today programme.

But he warned that with schools breaking up for summer,
children won’t be doing twice-weekly tests and will be mixing more.

“I think what we need to think about, though, is
that there has been a change recently and I think the big one is that in a lot
of parts of the country schools have now closed for the summer,” he said.

“Now, of course, because of that, what that means
is – secondary school children have been doing lateral flow tests twice a week
for quite a long period of time and we know at the moment cases are slightly
higher in younger people – (and) because schools have now broken up, it may be
that part of the reason cases have dropped somewhat is that we’re not detecting
as many cases in younger people now.”

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