Everyone in England will be asked to take a coronavirus test twice a week, as a new Covid passport system is assessed for large-scale use, as part of Prime Minister Boris Johnsons’ plan to reopen the economy after locking.
Free test kits will be made available at local pharmacies, community centers and home delivery services when the new regime takes effect on April 9.
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With most of the adult population having now received a vaccine, the government believes that rapid testing of the entire population and a system for certifying Covid status will help keep control of the pandemic as restrictions are relaxed.
Johnson is expected to lay out the details later Monday, ahead of the next stage of the curbside lifting for businesses and citizens scheduled for April 12.
Massive efforts have been made by the British public to stop the spread of the virus, “Johnson said in a statement issued by his office. As we continue to make good progress on our vaccination program and with our roadmap to Carefully relax ongoing restrictions. Regular rapid testing is even more important to ensure that these efforts are not in vain. “
The UK has suffered the highest death toll in Europe from the pandemic and is still reeling from the country’s deepest recession in 300 years.
A vaccination program that has quickly overtaken the rest of Europe has seen 31.5 million people receive at least one vaccine so far, and puts the UK in a good position to reopen even as countries neighbors like France are locked in again.
As part of the Johnsons plans:
- International travel could resume, possibly as early as May 17, with a new system of traffic lights “coding countries as red, orange or green, depending on their pandemic risks. Risk assessments will take into account the vaccination program. ” country, infection rate, viral strains and sequencing capacity
- Arrivals to the UK from green countries will not need to self-isolate, but will need to pass pre-departure and post-arrival testing. Quarantine and isolation rules will apply to passengers entering the country from locations on the Red and Amber lists.
- A Covid status certification system – often referred to as a Covid passport – will be developed over the next few months, which could allow the reopening of riskier venues such as sporting events, nightclubs and theaters.
- Covid certificates, which could be on paper or via a smartphone app, will be tested at mass events, including top football matches and other sporting events in the coming weeks; pubs, shops and restaurants won’t need to use certification to reopen
- A social distancing review will look at when families will be allowed to kiss again and whether Covid passports could see the distancing guidelines lifted.
Many of the measures contained in the Johnsons plan will have to be voted on in Parliament. Johnson will likely face demands from some of his own Tory colleagues to lift the lockdown faster, while more than 70 MPs have launched a campaign to oppose vaccine passports, citing concerns over the erosion of freedoms.
This story was posted from an agency feed with no text editing. Only the title has been changed.
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