UCL Faculty of Medical Sciences


COVID-19 Opinion

As coronavirus spread around the world, our UCL Faculty of Medical Sciences experts gave their opinion in the below press articles.

Prepare now for a winter COVID-19 peak, say UCL experts

The UK must prepare now for a potential new wave of coronavirus infections this winter that could be more serious than the first, says a new Academy of Medical Sciences report involving eight experts from UCL, including Professor Dame Anne Johnson (UCL Infection & Immunity). Read: Telegraph (£)More: Times (£)FT (£)ITV NewsMetroNew ScientistMail OnlineGuardianMedscapeUCL News

Global trial in healthcare workers tests if malaria drug can prevent COVID-19

Professor Ramani Moonesinghe (UCL Surgery & Interventional Sciences) is co-leading a clinical trial which will see up to 30,000 healthcare worker participants, to establish whether chloroquine, a widely prescribed anti-malaria drug, could also prevent people from getting COVID-19. (18 May 2020) Read: UCL News, More: The Times (South Africa)

UK coronavirus second wave will be 'massive' if Britons do not take vital action

Professor Hugh Montgomery (UCL Medicine) says Britons also had the power to cause a second wave tsunami if the Government's coronavirus advice was ignored. (18 May 2020) Read: Express 

Concerns raised over new UK biosecurity centre

The announcement of the UK biosecurity centre is “worrying” as it will be outside of the NHS and Public Health England, which have traditionally been responsible for disease control, says Professor Deenan Pillay (UCL Infection & Immunity). (13 May 2020) Read: Guardian

Independent expert group urges government to follow the science on Covid-19

UCL experts including Professor Susan Michie (UCL Psychology & Language Sciences), Professor Deenan Pillay (UCL Infection & Immunity) and Professor Karl Friston (UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology) discuss factors which must be considered for Covid-19 strategies to succeed. Read: FT,  More: GuardianMirror, SunSky NewsYahoo! News, BMJMail OnlineIndependentNew StatesmanTelegraph (£)ExpressWatch: BBC 2’s ‘Newsnight’ (from 10 mins 40 secs)

Until we have a vaccine for coronavirus, treatments like remdesivir are our only hope

Dr Jennifer Rohn (UCL Medicine) says patience is required as the world waits for a vaccine for Covid-19, as even in pre-pandemic times, drug testing can take two decades before entering the market. (30 April 2020) Read: Guardian

How do we check Covid-19 immunity?

We already know that many people who are infected with Covid-19 fight it off, but it is unclear whether they are then protected from getting the virus again, explains Professor Mala Maini (UCL Infection & Immunity). (24 April 2020) Read: BBC NewsMore: Express

What did Germany do differently to the UK on Covid-19?

Professor Dame Anne Johnson (UCL Infection & Immunity) explains that as Germany is testing more people for Covid-19 they are identifying milder cases than in the UK, and as such their fatality rate per case of the virus looks lower. (27 April 2020) Listen: BBC World Service’s ‘More or Less’ (from 4 mins 49 secs)

“We can't cope with a second wave" of Covid-19

Professor Hugh Montgomery (UCL Medicine) discusses how NHS staff are coping with patients in intensive care and pays tribute to nurses. (17 April 2020) 
Watch: Channel 4

Opinion: The impact of Covid-19 on our medical students will be far-reaching

As part of the Government’s response to Covid-19, UCL Medical School fast-tracked 304 final year students through graduation, making them available to the NHS as doctors. Here Professor Deborah Gill, Dr Faye Gishen and Dr Sarah Bennett (all UCL Medical School) share their thoughts and insight. (3 April 2020) Read: The BMJ

Covid-19: UCL’s medical students join frontline NHS as doctors

More than 300 of UCL’s medical students will be fast-tracked through graduation this week, ready to be made frontline NHS doctors, as part of the Government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic. (3 April 2020) Read: Evening Standard

“No evidence of anyone getting Covid-19 from handling or eating food”

Professor Pierre-Marc Bouloux (UCL Medicine) says that whilst normal food safety practices should continue to be followed, there does not seem to be a risk of catching Covid-19 coronavirus from food. (30 March 2020) Read: Evening StandardMore: Yahoo! News

UCL, UCLH and Formula One develop life-saving breathing aids for the NHS

A breathing aid that can help keep Covid-19 patients out of intensive care has been adapted by a team including Professor Rebecca Shipley, Professor Tim Baker (both UCL Mechanical Engineering) and Professor Mervyn Singer (UCL Medicine), working with UCLH and Mercedes-AMG HPP. (30 March 2020) Read: BBC NewsMore: Mail Online, The ConversationMetroGuardian, GQ, New York Post

How long can Covid-19 survive outside the body?

Professor Deenan Pillay (UCL Infection & Immunity) explains that viruses need to be inside another cell to survive, and how estimates of the length of time Covid-19 coronavirus can survive are based on analysis of related viruses such as SARS, as well as original research. (24 March 2020) 
Listen: Guardian Science Weekly

Leading UCL scientist joins major new alliance to map spread of coronavirus

Professor Judith Breuer (Director of UCL Pathogen Genomics Unit (UCL-PGU)), has today been announced as one of the leading UK scientists to be part of a major new genome sequencing consortium which will map the spread of Covid-19. (23 March 2020)
Read: UCL News

An intensive-care expert broke down just how contagious the coronavirus is

Professor Hugh Montgomery (UCL Division of Medicine) demonstrates just how infectious the new coronavirus is, as people are urged to self-isolate across the world. (23 March 2020)
Read: Business Insider, The Sun, Huffington Post, The Independent

I'm the head of a medical school. But doctors like me are going back to the frontline

Prof David Lomas (UCL School of Life and Medical Sciences) talks about UCL clinical academics going back to the front line as the Covid-19 crisis deepens. (19 March 2020)
Read: Guardian

Stark new data made the UK government's U-turn on coronavirus inevitable

Dr Jenny Rohn (UCL Medicine) writes about the challenges faced by public health officials making decisions about Covid-19 coronavirus based on limited and ever-changing evidence. (17 March 2020) Read: Guardian

Existing drugs may have a key role to play in coronavirus treatment

“Deaths from Covid-19 are rising and there is an urgent need for effective treatment. We recommend identification and treatment of hyperinflammation using existing, approved therapies with proven safety profiles to address the immediate need to reduce the rising mortality”, Dr Puja Mehta (UCL Division of Medicine). (15 March 2020) 
Read: iNews

Coronavirus and social distancing: is it risky to go to the pub or gym?

Professor Francois Balloux (UCL Genetics Institute) and Dr Jennifer Rohn (UCL Medicine) answer questions about how to stay safe over the weekend. (13 March 2020) 

Read: The GuardianMore: MSN NewsYahoo! News


Should clubs close to prevent coronavirus Covid-19 spread?

Clubs closing to stop coronavirus Covid-19 spread is sensible as “Clubbing involves crowded conditions on the dance floor, and participants inevitably get sweaty, which would help viruses linger on smears left on surfaces,” says Dr Jennifer Rohn (UCL Medicine). (13 March 2020) 
Read: New York Times

Coronavirus Covid-19 testing needs to be more widespread

The Government’s new measures to help prevent the spread of coronavirus Covid-19 are welcome, says Professor Deenan Pillay (UCL Infection & Immunity), but more needs to be done to ensure those who self-isolate are being tested, argues Dr Jennifer Rohn (UCL Medicine).(13 March 2020) 
Read: GuardianMore: Mail Online

How the COVID-19 coronavirus is spreading

Dr Jennifer Rohn (UCL Medicine) speaks about how the inconspicuous symptoms of the COVID-19 coronavirus help it to spread, contrasting it with more visible viruses such as Ebola. (3 March 2020) 
Read: Times (£)More: The Australian (£)Watch: BloombergListen: BBC Radio 2’s ‘Jo Whiley Show’ (from 1 min 5 secs) 

Coronavirus prevention must learn SARS lessons

“Several unique opportunities to perform studies and evaluations of a range of therapeutic and preventive interventions at the peak of the SARS and MERS outbreaks were lost due to delays,” explains Professor Ali Zumla (UCL Infection & Immunity). (30 January 2020) 
Read: Globe & Mail 

Hype and panic over coronavirus misplaced

Dr Jennifer Rohn (UCL Medicine) says people should not be scared of coronavirus and argues there has been “a lot of hype [and] a lot of panic” over the outbreak. (17 February 2020) 
Listen: BBC Radio 4’s ‘Six O'Clock News’ (from 11 mins 19 secs)Watch: BBC2’s ‘Victoria Derbyshire’ (from 6 mins 25 secs) 

Coronavirus not far off becoming a pandemic

“The 2019-nCov coronavirus outbreak has already surpassed its cousin Sars in terms of the number of cases confirmed,” explains Dr Jennifer Rohn (UCL Medicine) who argues the outbreak is close to being declared a pandemic. (5 February 2020) 
Read: Guardian 

Most Googled coronavirus questions answered

Dr Jennifer Rohn (UCL Medicine) answers questions on coronavirus that have been searched for on Google, in a Q&A session with ITV News. (5 February 2020) 
Watch: ITV News

Photo credit: CDC on Unsplash