Health secretary, Sajid Javid, announced yesterday that although the government would not be bringing in its Plan B measures yet, it is likely that more restrictions will be introduced in England if not enough people take up the offer of a vaccine.
The press conference came after a surge in Covid cases over the last two weeks, which Javid warned “could rise to up to 100,000 a day. Daily cases in England have been above 40,000 for eight consecutive days in a row.
As part of the government’s plan for tackling Covid over the winter period, restrictions will only be reintroduced if the NHS comes under “unsustainable pressure.”
Mr Javid, said: “If not enough people get their booster jabs, if not enough of those people that were eligible for the original offer… if they don’t come forward, if people don’t wear masks when they really should in a really crowded place with lots of people that they don’t normally hang out with, if they’re not washing their hands and stuff, it’s going to hit us all.
“And it would of course make it more likely we’re going to have more restrictions.”
What is Plan B?
The government could bring in the following measures in England if it was necessary to protect the NHS:
- Communicating clearly and urgently to the public that the level of risk has increased, and the need to behave more cautiously
- Introducing mandatory Covid passports
- Making face coverings compulsory again
- Advising people to work from home
Even if Plan B is implemented in England, it would still only bring it inline with current restrictions in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
The government maintains currently that there are no plans for another lockdown in England if cases should continue to rise.