Johnson sets winter pandemic roadmap

Photo: EPA Boris Johnson

British PM Boris Johnson is set to announce today how his government plans to control the coronavirus during the fall and winter, news wires reported. At a news conference he is expected to say that mask-wearing, work-from-home advice and social distancing rules that were lifted in July could return if cases climb.

But his Conservative government is resisting tougher measures and is hoping that vaccinations, rather than restrictions, will keep Covid-19 in check. Furthermore, it shelved a plan to introduce vaccine passports for nightclubs and other crowded venues.

Some experts have argued for vaccine passports as a way to encourage young people to get vaccinated, though others say compelling vaccination, rather than encouraging it, could increase hesitancy. The government’s decision applies in England. Scotland, which sets its own health policy, plans to introduce vaccine passports for crowded venues next month.

Britain is currently inoculating people 16 and up, and almost 90% of those eligible have had at least one dose of a vaccine. The government is also due to announce this week whether vaccinations will be extended to youths aged 12 to 15.

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