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England will not impose new COVID-19 restrictions; no evidence to justify tougher measures

Posted: Wednesday, December 29, 2021. 5:19 pm CST.

By Rubén Morales Iglesias: The English government has decided not to impose any new COVID-19 restrictions but will keep the pre-Christmas decision under close review according to the BBC. That is opposed to the decision taken by Scotland, Northern Ireland, and Wales where restrictions were increased this week

“In view of the continuing uncertainty about several things – the severity of Omicron, uncertainty about the hospitalization rate or the impact of the vaccine rollout or the boosters, we don’t think today that there is enough evidence to justify any tougher measures,” Prime Minister Boris Johnson said before Christmas.

Environment Secretary George Eustice said there was no evidence to support more restrictions at present but didn’t rule out doing so next year.

Health Secretary Sajid Javid said people should remain cautious adding that the government would reevaluate to see if more measures will be necessary in 2022.

“There will be no further measures before the new year,” Javid said at a press briefing.

“When we get into the new year, of course, we will see then whether we do need to take any further measures.”

However, there is a concern as to the impact Omicron will have on hospitals.

Javid said the government will watch carefully what happens in the hospitals and if they need to act, they won’t hesitate to do so.

The decision by the English government is considered a ‘lifeline’ by the hospitality sector, including pubs, bars, and clubs, as they lost considerable business leading up to Christmas because of cancellations due to the fear of the Omicron variant.

Professor Paul Hunter, professor in medicine at the University of East Anglia, told the BBC that in time people with Covid should be given permission to “go about their normal lives” as they would with a common cold. However, he said that that idea could be until after Easter.

The British consider restrictions do not stop Covid but buy time by delaying its spread.

Last year it allowed for the rollout of the vaccine program, which meant when cases spiraled the population was better protected.

 

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