Dr Fiona Godlee is editor of The BMJ (formerly the British Medical Journal), one of the world’s most respected news outlets for clinicians, with a monthly print circulation of almost 125,000 and an online reach of nearly three million. Graduating in medicine from Cambridge and initially training as a general physician, she then moved into research. She is also a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians. Fiona started writing for the BMJ in 1990 on a range of topics including public health, and has been editor-in-chief since 2005. In this in-depth interview, she argues that the COVID-19 pandemic is even more serious than recognised, refutes the “guided by the science” defence and puts the government’s response down to political judgement and scarcity of resources, and blames the lack of “openness and […] courage” in communicating the true gravity of the health crisis, warning that a second wave is “sadly inevitable”.