Second Wave: Did the Government Get It Wrong?

Channel 4


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Dispatches investigates why two thirds of all British Covid deaths came after September 2020 and examines what role the Prime Minister's decisions played in this.

Reporter Antony Barnett investigates key government decisions that shaped the second wave of infection, with the help of some of those at the heart of events. He explores why the Prime Minister ignored government scientific advice to lockdown and hears new claims that this led to tens of thousands of deaths. Top government scientists also say the emergence of the Kent variant wasn’t just “bad luck” and that the variant might have been stopped in its tracks by an earlier lockdown.  With the help of a UK Border Force whistleblower, the documentary also reveals how poor controls allowed a Spanish variant brought into the UK last summer to spark the second wave and exposes gaps in current border controls that risk lethal variants being imported into the UK.

First Broadcast

May 17, 2021




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