Boris Johnson covid announcement – Facemask rules to REMAIN but covid passports axed in weeks as PM fights to keep job

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Boris Johnson covid announcement – Facemask rules to REMAIN but covid passports axed in weeks as PM fights to keep job

The PM has been warned that he is in for the fight of his life as top Tories held emergency talks over when to bring his days in office to a swift end.

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A Cabinet source said: “Boris is toast and deep down he knows that. He’s not stupid. He’ll be thinking long and hard about his way out now.

“He may reach the conclusion it is better to get out with a bit of dignity in his own time. Even if he wins a confidence vote, he’ll know that’s a step along the road towards the exit door.”

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Meanwhile, from Monday, isolation rules are changing and are going down to five full days. But the confusing detail of the new rules means anyone isolating will actually have to do so for six, not five, days.

From Monday, under-18's can start booking their Covid booster jabs online.

Global Tech News Daily

Top-up doses will initially be available to 40,000 16 and 17-year-olds — as PM Boris Johnson prepares to drop Covid Plan B rules.

Read our covid live blog below for the latest news and updates…

  • Louis Allwood14 minutes ago

    Teens 16 and over can get Covid booster jab TODAY

    More than 600,000 in the age group in England have had their second jab — and will be able to get boosted as they reach three months after the second dose.

    Dr Nikki Kanani, deputy lead for NHS vaccinations, said it would enable the teenagers to “stay at school and continue socialising”.

    Invitations will be sent out this week, with 40,000 eligible from today.

    The NHS said invitations will encourage people in the age group to book their appointment online or to find their nearest walk-in centre.

    Health Secretary Sajid Javid said: “We’re now extending the programme to 16 and 17-year-olds so they can top-up their immunity this winter to keep themselves and their friends safe.

    “We can learn to live with Covid-19 if everybody comes forward for their vaccines and gets boosted now

    He added: “More than four in five adults in England have already been boosted, helping to protect them from severe illness and reduce the pressure on the NHS in the face of Omicron.”

  • Louis Allwood29 minutes ago

    Masks in classrooms likely to be scrapped in just 9 days

    The education secretary said he doesn't want the requirement for face coverings at desks to stay “a day longer than necessary”.

    And he insisted No 10 is “confident” the country can start to ditch wider Plan B restrictions from next Wednesday.

    Mr Zahawi said the numbers of Omicron are “looking positive” and that cases across the country seem to be “plateauing”.

    He added that there's also “really good news” on teacher absences, which have barely risen since before Christmas.

    The education secretary was asked if guidance that masks should be worn in classrooms will be scrapped when Plan B is reviewed on January 6.

    He replied: “I don't want those to be in the classroom for a day longer than necessary.

    “I know it's challenging for students to study and to interact with their teacher with masks.

    “I will review it on January 26 and I hope to be able to change the guidance.”

  • Louis Allwood44 minutes ago

    Tory MP's divided

    A fully fledged Tory Party civil war seems to have erupted, as anger over a series of leaks about alleged lockdown parties in Number 10 are engulfing Mr Johnson’s premiership.

    Six Conservative MPs have called for the Prime Minister to quit so far, arguing that a change of senior officials would not reverse the “terminal damage” done to Mr Johnson by the allegations.

    Former children’s minister Tim Loughton, in a post published on Facebook on Saturday, said: “It is not down to a simple Government policy change or a sacking of ministers or officials to put things right.

    “In this case all roads lead back to Downing Street and the person whose name is on the front door.”

    Senior Tory Tobias Ellwood said the Prime Minister must “lead or step aside”, telling the BBC: “We need leadership.”

  • Louis Allwood59 minutes ago

    By all the laws of political gravity, Boris Johnson is doomed

    This is a comment piece by Trevor Kavanagh

    BY all the laws of political gravity, Boris is doomed – clinging by his fingertips until Dominic Cummings chooses to finish him off with hobnailed boots.

    Even a barrage of “red meat” policies to tempt unhappy voters is unlikely to save this Prime Minister.

    If so, the most remarkable politician of our age will be paying a high price indeed for a shockingly ill-timed BYOB party.

    It’s all his own fault, of course. He has ducked all the rules of survival, made it up as he went along and refused the best advice from well-meaning allies.
    He will be evicted just as he leads us from the pandemic which almost cost him his life.

    The shortest Downing Street reign in living memory will end as the last Covid shackles are broken and the economy bursts back with the fastest recovery in Europe.

    BoJo’s many enemies in the Tory party and elsewhere, especially the Remainiacs, the Whitehall Blob and the BBC, are already licking their lips.

    They will be joined by ungrateful Red Wall MPs who owe him their unexpected seats in Parliament.

    Their joy may be unconfined. It may also be short lived.

  • Louis AllwoodToday, 08:30

    PM enlists Royal Navy to stop Channel migrants as he tries to stay in No10

    Boris Johnson is to enlist the Royal Navy to help combat migrant Channel crossings as he launches a policy blitz in a bid to cling on to his job.

    The PM also plans to ban boozing in Downing Street and fire failing advisers as he attempts to draw a line under partygate as part of his “Operation Red Meat” initiative.

    Mr Johnson will also vow to turbo-charge growth across the North and Midlands when he publishes the Government’s long-awaited Levelling Up plan next week.

    Yet former Cabinet ministers said the PM’s populist initiatives do not go far enough to save his skin — and by last night six Tory MPs had gone public to call for him to quit.

    Under Mr Johnson’s drive, the Navy would take over from the Border Force within the next few weeks in the battle to prevent migrants crossing the Channel in small boats to get into the UK.

    Government insiders believe the sight of Navy vessels patrolling will deter people-smuggling gangs from sending dinghies across the stretch.

  • Louis AllwoodToday, 08:15

    New blow

    In a new blow to the PM, former minister Tim Loughton yesterday became the sixth Tory MP to publicly call for him to quit.

    Former party chairman Lord Kenneth Baker, meanwhile, said the partygate claims were “hanging around Boris’ neck” and predicted that he could be gone in months.

    He said: “I think at some point this year there will be leadership election.”

    Mr Johnson is not expected to be seen out in public again until Wednesday, when he will face the wrath of his MPs at Prime Minister’s Questions.

  • Milica CosicToday, 08:00

    Labour’s 10-point plan for living with Covid-19 (Continued…)

    Labour’s 10 point plan for living with Covid:

    • Retain volunteer responders to assist with vaccination (next winter)
    • Prioritise testing and make it fit for the future
    • Fix sick pay
    • Playing our part in vaccinating the world
    • Prioritise children’s learning
    • Launch exercises to learn lessons
    • Publish a “road map” for future decision-making
    • Transform the “front door” of the NHS and use Covid’s legacy to build resilience and bring waiting lists down
    • Transform social care
    • Turbo-charge research and innovation

  • Milica CosicToday, 07:30

    Labour's 10-point plan for living with Covid-19

    Shadow health secretary Wes Streeting said the proposals were a way of learning to “live well” with coronavirus as it continues to adapt.

    Mr Streeting said: “We’re not out of the woods with Covid-19.

    “The virus will change and adapt and we need to learn to live well with it.

    “For the Government, living with Covid is just an empty slogan with no plan.

    “For some of the fanatics on the Conservative backbenches, living with Covid means letting the virus rip. Both positions are highly irresponsible.”

  • Milica CosicToday, 07:00

    Boris Johnson set to rake it in when he leaves No10

    THIRD parties are already making inquiries into hiring Boris Johnson for after-dinner speeches when he’s no longer Prime Minister.

    He could command five-figure sums for the celeb-style appearances when his life after No10 begins.

    Top agents have warned his “bookability” will slump fast if further revelations about boozy lockdown parties emerge in the meantime.

    One said: “His stock is pretty high but would fall fast if the damaging revelations continued for several months.

    “If he’s thinking of going, it would be financially more prudent to go sooner rather than later.”

    Mr Johnson earned £160,000 for two speeches made between quitting Theresa May’s Cabinet in 2019 and succeeding her as PM in 2020.

  • Milica CosicToday, 06:30

    Major Covid rule changes from TOMORROW

    There are major Covid rule changes which are set to be implemented from tomorrow, including a boost for struggling businesses and the NHS whereby people in England can leave isolation after five full days from Monday.

    From Monday isolation rules are changing, going down to five full days.

    But the confusing detail of the new rules means anyone isolating will actually have to do so for six, not five, days.

    This is because the first full day of isolation is NOT the day you test positive or noticed symptoms – although you must still isolate following either of these events.

    Read the full article here.

  • Milica CosicToday, 06:00

    'PM needs to urgently re-establish trust of the people'

    This is a comment piece.

    We report today that around 35 Tory MPs have submitted no confidence letters in the PM to the backbench 1922 Committee.

    That was before they returned to their constituencies this weekend to face the full ire of furious voters.

    Another 20 or so letters will trigger a disastrous leadership contest that could seal his fate.

    Exasperatingly for supporters, his issues are largely self-inflicted. Being leader is about tough decisions — and Boris has taken many as PM, including his gamble over our successful vaccine roll-out.

    But his response to the slew of allegations over partygate has seen him stagger from denial to partial apology, without ever taking the action needed to bring this sorry scandal to close.

    Now Boris is pinning his hopes on the Partygate inquiry by civil servant Sue Gray. Even if he is cleared of serious rule-breaking, Boris’s famed ability to wriggle out of scrapes will be tested to the limit.

    The PM urgently needs to re-establish the trust of the British people if he is to survive.

    Read more here.

  • Milica CosicToday, 05:30

    'To live with Covid, we must be prepared'

    Shadow Health Secretary Wes Streeting is announcing the move following the success of The Sun’s longstanding network to deliver jabs.

    Mr Streeting also said: “If we are to learn to live well with Covid, we need to be prepared.

    “No one wants to go into another lockdown again. Labour’s plan will put Britain on the front foot and secure our lives, livelihoods and liberties.”

    Labour will also set out their plan in the coming days for living with the virus.

    The announcement would also include working with businesses to ensure there are sufficient Covid tests for all that need them.

  • Milica CosicToday, 05:00

    Scrapping of tests would be a 'massive boost'

    Travel bosses will breathe a sign of relief once restriction-free travel comes into force.

    Tim Alderslade, CEO of Airlines UK, said of the previous announcement on January 5: “This is a hugely welcome move at a critical time in the booking season for passengers, and will provide a massive boost to those wanting to travel abroad or come to the UK this year.

    “People will now be able to book knowing that – for the fully-vaccinated – all emergency testing restrictions have been removed. 

    “Today marks an important step towards learning to live alongside the virus, helping passengers and the travel sector look ahead to what will be an all-important spring and summer season.”

  • Milica CosicToday, 04:30

    Vaccine volunteers would be kept on standby

    A STANDBY contingent of vaccine volunteers to take pressure off the NHS is part of a ten-point plan to live with Covid, Labour said on Friday night.

    A permanent ‘Jabs Army’ would  be deployed nationwide at short notice in case a new variant emerges.

    Shadow Health Secretary Wes Streeting is announcing the move following the success of The Sun’s longstanding network to deliver jabs.

    Mr Streeting said: “The best of Britain is getting us through this pandemic.

    “A Jabs Army can ready the country for future waves of infections.

    “I’m proud to support The Sun’s Jabs Army campaign.”

  • Milica CosicToday, 04:00

    Things 'looking more positive'

    Several Covid measures have already been thrown out amid the optimism, including self-isolation for positive cases being slashed to just five days for the fully jabbed.

    And it seems the UK is “on the other side” of the Omicron peak with “hospitalisations, deaths and general severity looking more positive”, according to epidemiologist Professor Tim Spector.

    A string of hugely positive studies show Omicron is milder than other strains in the vaccinated, with the first official UK report revealing the risk of hospitalisation is 50 to 70 per cent lower than with Delta.

    Covid booster jabs protect against Omicron and offer the best chance to get through the pandemic, health officials have repeatedly said.

    The Sun's Jabs Army campaign is helping get the vital extra vaccines in Brits' arms to ward off the need for any new restrictions.

  • Milica CosicToday, 03:30

    How Monday's new isolation system will work

    From Monday isolation rules are changing, going down to five full days.

    But the confusing detail of the new rules means anyone isolating will actually have to do so for six, not five, days.

    An example timeline is as follows:

    Monday = Day 0 (when you develop symptoms or get a positive test)

    Tuesday = Day 1

    Wednesday = Day 2

    Thursday = Day 3 

    Friday = Day 4  

    Saturday = Day 5 – first lateral flow test

    Sunday = Day 6 – second lateral flow test and if both are negative you can leave isolation

  • Milica CosicToday, 03:00

    Novak Djokovic finally deported from Australia

    The World No 1 was pictured at Melbourne Airport after he was finally given the boot amid the humiliating vaccine row that has rumbled on for nearly two weeks.

    He was left “extremely disappointed” after three judges unanimously dismissed his last-ditch appeal to stay Down Under and play.

    The government deemed the athlete may be a risk to the health and “good order” of the Australian people while scuppering their vaccination efforts.

    Boris Johnson covid announcement – Facemask rules to REMAIN but covid passports axed in weeks as PM fights to keep job

  • Milica CosicToday, 02:30

    Top civil servant admits being at party

    The ex-chief of Whitehall’s crack Covid Taskforce invited dozens of officials to a boozy leaving bash while London was at the height of Tier 3 restrictions that banned indoor mixing and closed pubs.

    Kate Josephs, now CEO of Sheffield City Council, said she was “truly sorry” for the do on December 17, 2020 in the Cabinet Office — which has a connecting door to No  10.

    The latest party-gate revelation came as PM Boris Johnson was forced into his second grovelling apology for the affair in a week — this time to the Queen.

    And more MPs and senior Tories broke cover to tell the PM to bite the bullet and resign.

    No 10 was rocked by revelations aides had stayed up drinking and dancing on the night of April 16 last year — the night before Prince Philip’s funeral.

    The party was so lairy it is even claimed an aide hauled a suitcase full of wine from a nearby supermarket and drunk revellers broke the garden swing used by the PM’s son Wilfred.

  • Milica CosicToday, 02:00

    Sajid Javid urges people to get boosted

    Health Secretary Sajid Javid has said: “We can learn to live with Covid if everybody comes forward for their vaccines and gets boosted now.”

    Dr Nikki Kanani, GP and deputy lead for the NHS vaccination programme, also said: “Covid has caused so much disruption for so many families over the past two years, affecting young people’s lives and education.

    “I’d urge everyone, whatever your age, to come forward and get that vital top-up as soon as it is possible.”

  • Milica CosicToday, 01:30

    Booster jabs available to under-18s from Monday

    UNDER-18s can start booking their Covid booster jabs online from Monday.

    Top-up doses will initially be available to 40,000 16 and 17-year-olds — as PM Boris Johnson prepares to drop Covid Plan B rules.

    Invites will be sent out to encourage a big take-up, with the group able to book via an online system or simply have one at their nearest walk-in centre.

    Read more here.

  • Milica CosicToday, 01:00

    Boris Johnson’s future as Prime Minister on ‘death row’

    BORIS Johnson’s Premiership is on “death row” as he faces a two-week battle to save his political neck.

    The PM has been warned he is in for the fight of his life as top Tories held emergency talks over when to bring his 907 days in office to a swift end.

    One senior figure yesterday claimed up to 35 MPs had already sent letters of no confidence to backbenchers’ leader Sir Graham Brady.

    A Cabinet source said: “Boris is toast and deep down he knows that. He’s not stupid. He’ll be thinking long and hard about his way out now.

    “He may reach the conclusion it is better to get out with a bit of dignity in his own time.

    “Even if he wins a confidence vote, he’ll know that’s a step along the road towards the exit door.”

    Read more here.

  • Milica CosicToday, 00:30

    Covid tests to be SCRAPPED for fully vaccinated Brits

    COVID tests for fully-vaccinated Brits returning to the UK are set to be scrapped in a major boost for half-term holidays.

    The move would allow families a stress-free getaway come February 18 when most schools break up for a week, with no need to fork out for the at-home kits or visit test centres.

    A source close to the Cabinet minister told The Times: “We are looking at removing all Covid tests for vaccinated travellers by the end of January, which is likely to coincide with the review of the Plan B measures on January 26.”

    Boris Johnson is expected to remove many curbs on our daily lives amid growing confidence the UK can ride out the Omicron wave.

  • Joseph GampToday, 00:00

    New rules from TODAY

    RULES FOR PEOPLE WITH SYMPTOMS

    Isolation starts from the day of your first symptoms.

    You must remain in isolation for five full days, and can leave after negative lateral flows on days five and six.

    So, if you noticed symptoms on Monday morning, which counts as day zero – regardless of when you then tested positive – you can take your first lateral flow test on Saturday (day five). It means you could be free from isolation on Sunday morning after a second negative lateral flow test.

    But if you continue to test positive, you must still remain in isolation until you have a negative test.

    RULES FOR PEOPLE WITH NO SYMPTOMS

    Isolation starts from the day of your first positive lateral flow test.

    You must remain in isolation for five full days, and can leave after negative lateral flows on days five and six.

    For example, if you test positive on Monday morning at 11am, which counts as day zero, you must wait until Saturday (day five) to do your first test and see if you are negative. It means you could be free from isolation on Sunday morning after a second negative lateral flow test.

    But if you continue to test positive, you must still remain in isolation until you have a negative test

  • Milica Cosic16th Jan 2022, 23:30

    Here’s the ways Covid affects your BRAIN

    According to Professor James Goodwin, one in five Covid patients could suffer with cerebral vascular events.

    He explained in the Telegraph this is because infections send our immune system into overdrive, and in some people who have a huge viral load, it can cause an uncontrolled response.

    This is the release of a large amount of inflammatory molecules – known as a cytokine storm – to the infected area.

    It mainly affects the lungs, and can spark acute respiratory distress syndrome, failure and sometimes death.

    But it's not only the lungs that are hit by an immune system in overdrive – other organs such as the heart, liver and kidneys can be damaged due to low oxygen, inflammation and blood clotting.

    The brain can also be hit by this too, and become injured in the body's attempt to fight back against the virus.

    7 neurological events caused by Covid:

    • Headaches
    • Brain fog
    • Delirium
    • Strokes
    • Blood clots
    • Loss of smell
    • Hallucinations

  • Joseph Gamp16th Jan 2022, 23:00

    What is changing from Monday?

    From Monday isolation rules are changing, going down to five full days.

    But a confusing detail in the new rules means anyone isolating will actually have to do so for six, not five, days.

    This is because the first full day of isolation is NOT the day you test positive or noticed symptoms – although you must still isolate following either of these events.

    That day is now known as “day zero”, with the next day counting as day one, the UK Health Security Agency confirmed.

    Covid patients must then test negative on lateral flow tests on day five and six in order to be released from isolation.

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