The UK has breached a 1,000 daily COVID-19 case target for the third time in a single week.
The number, which was set by the Joint Biosecurity Centre in May, was breached on Sunday after 1,062 cases were recorded in a single day and again on Tuesday with 1,148.
On Wednesday cases rose by a further 1,009.
The 1,000 daily total had not been surpassed since late June.
Prof Gabriel Scally, a member of Independent Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) which was set up amid concerns over influence on the government’s official Sage advisory group, described the breach as “unacceptable, ineffective and dangerous”.
“Something’s got to change, otherwise we are really in for an extraordinarily difficult time,” he told the Guardian.
“It’s bad, and at the back of it all is that the government does not have a strategy,” he added, saying that the last time ministers published a strategy relating to COVID-19 was 3 March.
“They have no strategy for dealing with the virus that they have ever made public.”
The mention of 1,000 positive tests was included in a document on Sage’s website on 20 May.
It was part of a series of measures that would help ensure coronavirus “flare-ups” were avoided.
The document says: “Decreasing daily incidence of symptomatic cases in all regions across the UK until the target acceptable incidence is reached, then incidence kept below that target.
“This target is yet to be specified and needs to be spelt out. We suggest 1,000 new symptomatic swab +ve [positive] cases per day in the UK.”
A Department of Health and Social Care spokesperson added: “The UK continues to have low levels of disease compared to the start of the pandemic and, thanks to our large testing capacity, we are able to detect more cases now than ever before.
“We will not hesitate to take necessary steps to stop the spread of the virus and continue to urge the public to play their part by following government guidance.”
Overall, a total of 313,798 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in the UK.
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