Containing COVID: Comparing pandemic responses in Australia and the UK

Event 15 Dec 2020

Join The Conversation for a virtual discussion with LSTM's Dr Tom Wingfield about the pandemic responses in Australia and the UK, how they are different and what the two countries can learn from one another.

The UK has been one of the countries hit hardest by the coronavirus pandemic, and is currently in the grip of a deadly second wave alongside many of its neighbours in Europe. More than 60,000 people have died of the disease in the UK so far.

Like success stories Taiwan, Vietnam and South Korea, Australia was feted early for its robust response to the crisis, but a second wave engulfed the state of Victoria in July this year after the virus escaped the country’s hotel quarantine system. The capital city of Melbourne entered a lockdown that lasted almost four months and more than 800 people died in the southern state.

Today, Australians are out of lockdown and gathering in groups, going to the theatre and getting ready for Christmas gatherings. Meanwhile, much of the UK remains under heavy restrictions as a long winter looms ahead.

The Conversation's Megan Clement will chair the discussion with:

  • Professor Catherine Bennett, an epidemiologist who has followed  Melbourne’s remarkable trajectory from one of the world’s strictest lockdowns to more than a month of zero cases a day
  • Dr Tom Wingfield, a doctor who has been working on the COVID wards in Liverpool

The session is free to watch on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter: all the links are available at the end of this post.