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Prime Minister Boris Johnson has announced that travellers will be required to quarantine in government-funded hotels for 10 days upon their return to the UK.
During his announcement this afternoon, January 27, the prime minister stated that UK residents returning to the country will be provided with ‘government-funded accommodation’, where they will be expected to isolate for 10 days.
People who are expected to quarantine will be collected from the airport, said Johnson, and taken straight to their accommodation.
He also stated that more measures will be taken at airports and ports to ensure that those leaving the country are only doing so for work purposes, not leisure.
On January 15, the UK closed all travel corridors in a bid to prevent new strains of the virus getting in. It was reported that these measures will remain in place until at least February 15.
Johnson’s statement comes after the UK hit the harrowing figure of 100,000 deaths due to coronavirus since the pandemic began last year. As of yesterday, January 26, the Office of National Statistics reported the country’s COVID death toll has almost hit 104,000.
The prime minister also gave some more optimistic news during today’s statement, reporting that 6.8 million people have received the vaccine so far, making up around 13% of the country’s adult population.
He added that the country is currently on track to have vaccinated the most vulnerable people in the top four tiers by mid-February.
In regards to when the UK can expect to come out of lockdown, Johnson explained that there isn’t currently enough data to judge vaccination’s ability at blocking transmission there, and until then, the government cannot judge when restrictions can be eased.
However, he did promise that we will not ‘persist with lockdown for a day longer than necessary’.
It’s hoped by mid-February a better idea of the vaccines’ effectiveness will be known, therefore giving the government the chance to start mapping out a way of getting the country out of lockdown.
Johnson also stated that the pressure on the NHS must be lifted before we come out of lockdown. Currently, there are 37,000 patients in hospital with the virus.
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