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No event ban necessary in UK, says gov medical adviser

The deputy chief medical officer has told the UK live industry there is no rationale for shutting down events, despite fears over the coronavirus

By Jon Chapple on 02 Mar 2020

A woman wears a face mask to protect against Covid-19

There will be no ban on live events and other large-scale mass gatherings in the UK in the immediate future, a senior government medical adviser has told the UK events industry.

In a conference call with event organisers, including members of the UK Live Music Group, this afternoon (2 March), the deputy chief medical officer (CMO) said there is “no clear rationale” for closing events in order to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 coronavirus, as has happened in other European countries, including FranceSwitzerland and Italy.

Based on the biomathematical models of the virus’s spread, the current guidance is that stopping events is not necessary, Jonathan Van-Tam said, adding that the principal places of infection are the home, schools and workplace. With the virus having a relatively small radius of infection (two metres), pubs and public transport were noted as being more likely to be a source of transmission than events.

The government will look at the evidence on a case by case basis as the situation unfolds, he added.

Pubs and public transport were noted as being more likely to be a source of transmission than events

The deputy CMO’s advice comes ILMC kicks off in Kensington, London, from tomorrow (3 March). The ILMC Production Meeting (IPM) and Green Events and Innovations Conference (GEI) take place during the day, with the ILMC opening party beginning at 6pm that evening.

With Covid-19 high on the agenda, all ILMC delegates are welcome to attend IPM’s session on event cancellation, Don’t Stop Me Now!: The consequences of show cancellations, at 16:30 tomorrow – while coronavirus is also slated for discussion during ILMC’s main opening session on Wednesday 4 March, the Open Forum, with Paul Latham, CAA’s Emma Banks, UTA’s David Zedeck and more.

For more information and the full ILMC agenda (including IPM, GEI and Futures Forum), visit 32.ilmc.com.


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