- AffiliationImperial College London, U.K.
In early March, the U.K. was pursuing a coronavirus strategy that accepted an almost unchecked infection rate in a bid to create widespread immunity. Modeling provided by epidemiologist Ferguson and his team helped change the government’s mind. Without a lockdown, the scientists warned, over 500,000 people could die in the U.K. The White House also took note of the model, which predicted a U.S. death toll as high as 2.2 million, and stepped up isolation rules.