National reports of MK lockdown danger are misleading

Wednesday 1 July 2020

The Leader of Milton Keynes Council has stated that Milton Keynes is not in danger of a local lockdown after several misleading reports have appeared in the national press.

He has however re-iterated that despite low infection numbers in the city people should continue to follow infection control and social distancing guidelines as spikes in the Covid-19 virus can flare up quickly due to the highly infectious nature of the virus.

Several nation newspapers have reported Milton Keynes is in the top 36 places at risk of a local lockdown. This follows the emergency actions leading to a local lockdown in Leicester.

Milton Keynes Council is reassuring people that the reports are based on a poor analysis of data. The story only includes one strand of publicly available testing results, where the number of positive tests rose from one to two in a week. While these are very low numbers, statistically it means a 100% rise in cases, and it is this number that seems to have led to the misleading reports.

Cllr Peter Marland said:

“I want to reassure people that we are not in any danger of a local lockdown at present. The reports of such a threat are based on a flawed analysis of data and are misleading.”

“Our Covid-19 infection rate in the city remains low, but the virus is still circulating in our population and our strong instructions are to keep following infection control and social distancing guidelines. Spikes can occur quickly, and our low numbers should not be a green light to complacency.”

“Reports with no basis like this are worrying, but they are also dangerous. It may be that at some point we do have a local second wave, and we need to keep people on board with up to date and correct information, something we are pressing the government to provide in a way we can have full confidence in.”