Government and Institutions

We are “at a point where the cure is worse than the disease,” says IEA Director General


Government and Institutions

Julian Jessop quoted in the Sunday Mirror

In response to Boris Johnson’s announcement of further restrictions across England, Mark Littlewood, Director General at the Institute of Economic Affairs, said:

“We seem to have learnt the wholly unsurprising lesson that a relaxation of restrictions leads to an increase in the infection rate. Rather than putting the entire economy in the deep freeze while we wait for the miracle of a vaccination to come on stream, we need to find smarter ways to live with the virus. 

“We have learnt a lot about Covid-19 in the last few months. We are far better at treating and saving those who fall ill. We know much more about the types of people who are most at risk from the coronavirus – mainly the elderly and those with certain underlying conditions. 

“A targeted approach where we support those who need to shield and allow those who are less at risk to judge their own risks and vulnerabilities would be much better than a blanket lockdown. We have now reached the point – in terms of both our health and our wealth – where the cure is worse than the disease.”


Notes to Editors

For media enquiries please contact Annabel Denham, Director of Communications, 07540770774

Mark Littlewood is available for further comment

For further IEA reading:

Coronavirus and the economic value of human life

Rebooting Britain

The mission of the Institute of Economic Affairs is to improve understanding of the fundamental institutions of a free society by analysing and expounding the role of markets in solving economic and social problems. The IEA is a registered educational charity and independent of all political parties.