AFP

Virologist Peter Piot: "There won’t be one large second wave, but a number of flare-ups”

The Fleming that advises the European Commission on research into the novel coronavirus Professor Peter Piot has told VRT News of how a possible second wave of novel coronavirus infections should be tackled. At the start of the pandemic in Europe in March Professor Piot himself become infected. He told our Sunday morning topic discussion programme ‘De zevende dag’ that it is inevitable that the virus will return.  

“It won’t just disappear overnight. However, I don’t think that there will be one massive wave, but rather flare-ups here and there like what we are now seeing in China and South Korea, countries that were the first to be affected. We are in fact only at the start of the epidemic”, Dr Piot explained.

"But I am quite optimistic about how we are going to deal with it. Now we know the virus much better we can respond more quickly and by doing so limit the spread of the epidemic. I believe that Germany is one of the best examples of this. The have a centralised policy (on the virus), had a lot of testing capacity available early, but a lot of decisions were also taken at a local level”, Professor Piot added. 

James Arthur Photography

Meanwhile, the woman at the head of the group that advises Belgium policy makers on our country’s corona lockdown exit policy Dr Erika Vlieghe (photo above) told ‘De zevende dag’ that leadership is something that she has missed during the corona crisis. Dr Vlieghe said “During this first wave I have really missed there being a captain of the ship.

Someone that determines the direction to be taken, someone that says what needs to be done both in Belgium and in Europe”.