A large number of the UK's top medical experts are worried the nation's current lockdown does not go far enough and won't bring Covid infections under control.
Earlier on Saturday, the official coronavirus death toll in the UK rose to more than 80,000 as lab-confirmed cases across the country passed the three million mark.
The number of patients with Covid-19 in hospital is also at a record high in England, and medics have warned the full impact of social mixing over the Christmas period has not yet been seen.
Scientists advising the Government estimate there are currently more than 100,000 new infections per day and possibly higher than 150,000 – which they believe puts the current number of daily cases at a higher level than ever during the pandemic.
They believe the current lockdown – brought in across England by Boris Johnson in the days after Christmas – may lead to a plateau of cases of coronavirus across the UK rather than the dramatic cut seen following the March and April lockdown.
If that wasn't enough, the current lockdown has been branded "too lax" by a member of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage).
Susan Michie, professor of health psychology at University College London, said there is still "a lot of household contact" and that the "wide definition of critical workers" means "30-50% of (school) classes (are) full-up".
Prof Michie, who is also part of Independent Sage, told Today: "It is definitely too lax, because if you think about it and compare ourselves with March, what do we have now?
"We have the winter season and the virus survives longer in the cold, plus people spend more time indoors and we know aerosol transmission, which happens indoors, is a very big source of transmission for this virus.
"And secondly, we have this new variant which is 50-70% more infectious. You put those two things together, alongside the NHS being in crisis, we should have a stricter rather than less strict lockdown than we had back in March."
Professor Robert West, a participant in the Scientific Pandemic Influenza Group on Behaviours (SPI-B) and also part of Independent Sage, echoed her words, saying the current lockdown rules are "still allowing a lot of activity which is spreading the virus".
Asked if he thinks they should change, he told BBC News: "Yes, I do. Not just me. I think probably most of the people I talk to, epidemiologists, and medical scientists and virologists."
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