Covid cases rise as restaurants reopen in UK

after the first wave Pandemic, the Boris Johnson-led British government has decided to authorize a generalized reopening and, in particular, have launched an incentive program for bar and restaurant attendance, called ‘Eat Out to Help Out’. which remained in force between 3 and 31. August 2020. It offered a 50% discount, paid for by the government, on all food and non-alcoholic beverages consumed between Monday and Wednesday, up to a maximum of £10 per person, with no limit on the number of times it is used. Around 60,000 commercial establishments immediately joined the program, which actually saw the number of customers skyrocket (10-200%) with numbers much higher than the mid-week average of the pre-Covid era.

economist Thimo Fetzer, of the University of Warwick, wanted to analyze the progress of the epidemic in those days and following, to place it in relation to the new socialism and to see whether it had an effect on later infections. The researcher published his findings economic journal, thus it is known that very contingency policy has contributed significantly in triggering the second wave of COVID-19.

Happy waiters wearing protective face masks while serving food to guests at a restaurant.  restoranti
British restaurant and club incentive program sees rise in COVID-19 cases after reopening

in totality, In fact, around 160 million meals were subsidized within just one month, costing the taxpayer £849 million: a resounding success, even if not cheap. To test how the infection went, Fetzer brought up the other side of the coin: a gruff face, noting that there were several outbreaks after the first week, all the more extensive the area had joined restaurants. Initiative. In contrast, neighborhoods and areas with fewer commercial establishments did not have the same trend as those that recorded the highest rainfall during that period. Furthermore, the association has gradually become less pronounced from the end of August and the start of the program, until it disappears by the second half of September.

in totality, According to the researcher, the reopening would account for 11% of the cases reported in the month of August and the first days of September, which is characterized by much higher infections than the average seen in July and up to the beginning. of August. So the program has helped restaurants and restaurant managers, but at a higher cost. And it was never repeated.

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Roberto La Pira

Agnes Codignola

science journalist

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