Nov 2, 2020 - Health

Europe heads back into lockdown

A shopkeeper closes their store.

A worker packs away awnings outside a cafe in London. Photo: Hollie Adams/Getty Images

A slew of European countries have announced new lockdowns over the last week in response to uncontrolled spread of the coronavirus.

Between the lines: Many of these countries are facing the threat of overrun health care systems in the near-term future and, potentially, harrowing decisions about how to ration care, the Washington Post reports.

  • "An exponential phenomenon starts with very small numbers, and it is not tangible for weeks and weeks and weeks for people out there," Emmanuel André, a leading Belgian virologist, told the Post. "If you look at the numbers, you have very strong indicators early on that things are going wrong, but it is only at the very end that things explode."

What we're watching: The U.S. is on a similarly dire trajectory, although it's unclear how we'll respond.

Driving the news: A new national lockdown will be imposed in England, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced Saturday, as the number of COVID-19 cases in the country topped 1 million.

  • Austria announced a four-week nighttime curfew and the closure of cafes, bars and restaurants as another surge of coronavirus infections strains the country's health care system, according to Reuters.
  • Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said over the weekend that most of the country will resume a coronavirus lockdown starting Tuesday, including closing restaurants, bars, cafes, movie theaters and gyms, AP reports.
  • Belgium began enforcing a strict lockdown yesterday amid rising coronavirus infections, hospital admissions and a surge of deaths.
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