A bad third wave of Covid this summer is now “very unlikely”, according to government modellers.
Updated models for the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage) due to be released on Monday are expected to show there is little prospect of the NHS being overwhelmed even as cases rise again after the end of coronavirus restrictions.
Increasingly positive data on the effectiveness of vaccines in preventing illness death and now transmission of the virus have meant scientific advisers are increasingly optimistic about avoiding a severe surge as normal life resumes.
However, there is uncertainty about next winter, with the emergence of vaccine-resistant variants now the major concern, as well as worries about seasonal increases and waning immunity.
The government is due to confirm on