Travel corridors axed completely says Boris Johnson in latest quarantine u-turn
The prime minister said anyone flying into the country from overseas will have to show proof of a negative Covid test before setting up. The government has also banned flights from South America, Portugal and Cape Verde over the emergence of a new variant in Brazil.
It comes as the UK is set to face short-term delays in the delivery of the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine as the pharmaceutical company upgrades its production capacity to produce more doses.
Shipments of the vaccine, produced in partnership with Germany’s BioNTech, to the UK are set to be affected this month, but the overall number of doses due to be delivered between January and March will remain the same, according to the US firm.
Removing coronavirus restrictions at end of next month would be ‘disaster’, epidemiologist cautions
Removing coronavirus restrictions at the end of next month would be a “disaster” and put “enormous pressure” on the NHS, a leading epidemiologist has warned.
Professor John Edmunds, who works on the government’s coronavirus response as part of the scientific advisory group for emergencies (Sage), told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “I think it would be a disaster if we removed restrictions in, say, the end of February when we have gone through this first wave of the vaccination.
“First of all vaccines aren’t ever 100 per cent protective, and so even those that have been vaccinated would be still at some risk.
“Secondly, it is only a small fraction of the population who would have been vaccinated and if you look at the hospitalisations at the moment, about half of them are in the under 70s, and they are not in the first wave to be vaccinated.
“If we relaxed our restrictions we would immediately put the NHS under enormous pressure again.”
Samuel Osborne16 January 2021 08:47
Labour warns government to act in ‘proper, strategic way’ over travel corridor closures
The shadow home secretary has warned the government to act in a “proper, strategic way” in its closure of all travel corridors on Monday.
Labour’s Nick Thomas-Symonds told the BBC: “The measures are necessary, I support them coming into effect.
“I do say to the government to get a comprehensive plan and to act in a proper, strategic way, not in the short-term chaotic way we’ve seen over the past twelve months.”
He added: “First of all it is about checking before people board airplanes and then checks on arrival.
“But to make this whole system work we have to have an effective quarantine system, and that’s been a real problem.”
Samuel Osborne16 January 2021 08:35
Good morning and welcome to the latest updates on the pandemic as all quarantine-free travel to the UK will be suspended on Monday and the country faces short-term delays in the delivery of the Pfizer coronavirus vaccine as the company upgrades its production capacity.
Samuel Osborne16 January 2021 08:26