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UK Likely To Impose 2-Week Lockdown Following Christmas Due To Growing COVID Concerns

UK ministers are preparing for a two-week “circuit breaker” lockdown following Christmas in order to halt the spread of the novel coronavirus Omicron.
According to The Times, UK ministers are developing plans for a two-week “circuit breaker” lockdown following Christmas to halt the spread of the new Omicron variant of the coronavirus. Following the rapid spread of the Omicron variant, England’s current Plan B includes measures such as mandatory COVID health cards for select events, mandatory face masks in the majority of public indoor venues, including theatres and cinemas, and encouraging people to work from home whenever possible.

England would reintroduce restrictions on indoor social interaction, except for work-related purposes, with bars and restaurants restricted to outdoor service, similar to April’s legislation. According to leaked minutes from a meeting of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), ministers are acting on scientific advisers’ recommendations that actions beyond Plan B are urgently required, The Guardian reported.

In England, hospitalizations may exceed 3,000 per day.

UK Likely To Impose 2-Week Lockdown Following Christmas Due To Growing COVID Concerns
UK Likely To Impose 2-Week Lockdown Following Christmas Due To Growing COVID Concerns

According to Sage experts, unless restrictions are imposed prior to January 1, hospital admissions in England may reach “at least” 3,000 per day. According to the media report, quickly implementing a “circuit-breaker” could significantly reduce the peak in hospital admissions and infections when compared to Plan B alone.

On Friday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson allegedly received several options for a so-called Plan C. The Financial Times reports that these range from gentle counselling to encouraging individuals all the way up to lockdown. Officials will decide whether to tighten coronavirus restrictions over the weekend, according to various UK media reports. According to Downing Street, a Cobra conference this weekend with the devolved nations will consider whether a coordinated response to the threat posed by the Omicron variant is necessary across the UK.

The recommendations of scientific experts are similar to those included in Steps One and Two of the United Kingdom’s roadmap out of lockdown, which was announced earlier this spring. At the time, both indoor social interaction and hospitality were prohibited. Over the last week, hospitalizations due to COVID-19 have averaged between 800 and 900 per day.

93,045 COVID-19 cases were reported in the United Kingdom on Friday.

The information about Plan ‘C’ comes as the UK reported an additional 93,045 COVID-19 cases on Friday, the highest daily total since the pandemic began. Concerns about the virus’s Omicron strain, which is expected to be significantly more transmissible than Delta, prompted the UK to administer a COVID-19 booster dose to a total of 26.3 million people aged 18 and more than half of adults.

Omicron was responsible for 3,201 of the total daily cases, up from 1,691 on Thursday. This brings the total number of cases of the new rising type in the UK to 14,909, according to the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA).

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