Senin, 23 November 2020

England to come out of lockdown and into stricter tiered system, Johnson announces - ABC News

England will return to a stricter three-tiered system of local COVID-19 restrictions when the nationwide lockdown ends next week, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has announced.

From next Wednesday all non-essential shops and gyms will be allowed to be open regardless of the severity of the tier, however each of the three tiers will be toughened up to avoid a repeat of the previous system which did not work effectively enough and led to the month-long national lockdown.

Spectators will also be allowed to return to watch some sports where social distancing can be observed, weddings will be allowed to take place and places of worship can reopen.

The strength of each region's tier will be determined by several factors, including case numbers and the reproduction rate (R number), but the tier for each area will not be announced until Thursday.

Speaking to Parliament from self-isolation due to recent contact with an MP who tested positive for COVID-19, Mr Johnson said the scientific advice was that the tiered system needed to be made stronger.

"We're not going to replace national measures with a free for all," he said.

"We're going to go back instead to a regional, tiered approach, applying the toughest measures where COVID is most prevalent."

Pubs will be allowed to reopen and the closing time will be pushed from 10pm to 11pm, but under Tier 2 restrictions they will be allowed to only serve alcohol with a "substantial meal", and under Tier 3 they will only be allowed to serve takeaway alcohol.

Regions under Tier 3 will face the toughest restrictions, and all councils in the most severe tier will be offered mass testing programs.

Plans are also being drawn up with the devolved nations to allow a UK-wide approach to allow families to celebrate together during the Christmas period in small social bubbles.

Vaccines edging closer to 'liberating' Britain

Mr Johnson also welcomed Monday's announcement by AstraZeneca that its COVID-19 vaccine developed alongside the University of Oxford can be up to 90 per cent effective.

"Clearly the most hopeful advance of all is how vaccines are now edging ever closer to liberating us from the virus, demonstrating emphatically that this is not a pandemic without end," he said.

"We can take great heart from today's news, which has the makings of a wonderful British scientific achievement."

Earlier Health Secretary Matt Hancock said the Government's vaccine program is set to begin next month pending regulatory approval, with 100 million doses on order.

"The bulk of the vaccine rollout programme will be in January, February, March," Mr Hancock said.

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2020-11-23 16:33:00Z

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