England’s hospitals could be overwhelmed without new tier system – minister

(Reuters) – Hospitals in England risk being overwhelmed if lawmakers do not support the government’s new plan for restrictions, Cabinet Office minister Michael Gove said on Saturday.

More than 20 million people across large swathes of England will be forced to live under the toughest category of COVID-19 restrictions when a national lockdown ends on Dec. 2. Lawmakers are due to vote on the restrictions the day before.

But a growing number of lawmakers in Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservative party have voiced opposition to the tiered restrictions plan.

Some argue that the areas they represent have low infection rates but the toughest rules, while others say the new measures will cause unnecessary economic harm to local businesses.

Defending the government’s plans in an article in The Times newspaper, Gove said “difficult decisions” were necessary to confront the crisis.

The virus “is no respecter of constituency boundaries and the hardships we are facing now are unfortunately necessary to protect every single one of us, no matter where we live,” he wrote.

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