Boris Johnson will announce that the lifting of most of the remaining Covid-19 restrictions in England will take place on July 19 amid a backlash from government scientific advisers who warned that doing so would be like building new “variant factories.” “.
Despite the cases having reached their highest level since January 2021, the prime minister is ready to go ahead with the final stage of unlocking in two weeks.
At a Downing Street press conference on Monday afternoon, he is expected to announce that, with 86% of adults in the UK having had at least one first hit, the government will shift from relying on legal restrictions to control people’s behavior to allow people to take action. your own decisions.
Changes to be announced include allowing fully vaccinated adults to travel to Amber List countries without having to isolate themselves when they return; make the use of face masks voluntary, as well as in hospitals and other healthcare settings; and fully vaccinated adults no longer need to isolate themselves if they have come into contact with an infected person.
The school bubble system that has forced hundreds of thousands of students to self-quarantine at home if someone in their bubble tested positive is also expected to be removed, while bar and restaurant patrons will no longer have to scan. an NHS QR code.
The different approach to tackling Covid was supported by Health Secretary Sajid Javid, who stated that it would be impossible to eradicate the disease and that the country would have to “find ways to deal with it,” as is the case with the flu.
He also said the health arguments for the opening were “compelling” but admitted that dangerous new variants could emerge against which current vaccines were ineffective.
In addition to announcing that nightclubs may reopen in two weeks, Johnson is due to disclose the results of government reviews on social distancing and Covid status certificates.
The Guardian revealed last week that ministers planned to remove all mandatory mask and social distancing restrictions in England as of July 19, although national guidelines encouraging caution in high-risk areas such as transport may be upheld. public.