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Where do we stand with COVID right now?

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Where do we stand currently with COVID?  There are so many articles and rumours around that it is difficult to know exactly what is what. What is really happening?

Currently we are in the Government’s Plan A, but what exactly is Plan A?

Plan A is the winter strategy currently in operation in England:

  • offering Covid booster jabs to about 30 million people
  • offering healthy 12 to 15-year-olds a single vaccine dose
  • encouraging unvaccinated people to get jabbed
  • NHS Test and Trace continues and PCR and lateral flow tests remain free
  • encouraging free flu jab take-up
  • reminding people to let in fresh air when meeting indoors, to wash their hands, and to wear face coverings in crowded places

 

covid
Photo by engin akyurt on Unsplash

 

We are also hearing a lot about Plan B now as the colder weather approaches and people are inside more.  What is Plan B and what will it mean for us?

The objective is to avoid a rise in COVID 19 hospitalisations. If Plan A is not sufficient to prevent unsustainable pressure on the NHS, then further measures will be introduced.

Plan B

  • Communicating clearly and urgently to the public that the level of risk has increased, and there is a need to behave more cautiously
  • Introducing mandatory Covid passports
  • Making face coverings compulsory again
  • Advising people to work from home

What are the criteria for implementing Plan B?

No single event or set of figures would trigger Plan B, but when the plans were published in September, the government said it would monitor:

  • hospitalisations
  • rapid rates of change in figures
  • the overall state of the NHS

Under Plan B, the Government expects that mandatory vaccine-only certification would be introduced for visitors to the following venues:

  • All nightclubs;
  • Indoor, crowded settings with 500 or more attendees where those attendees are likely to be in close proximity to people from other households, such as music venues or large receptions;
  • Outdoor, crowded settings with 4,000 or more attendees where those attendees are likely to be in close proximity to people from other households, such as outdoor festivals; and
  • Any settings with 10,000 or more attendees, such as large sports and music stadia. There are some settings that will be exempt from requirements to use the NHS COVID Pass, including communal worship, wedding ceremonies, funerals and other commemorative events, protests and mass participation sporting events.

You can read the detailed Autumn and Winter Plan here.

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