People who have had two doses of a coronavirus vaccine will still be counted as fully jabbed despite ministers pleading with people to come forward for booster shots.
Downing Street said today that it had no plan to alter its definition of what counted as covered, including for vaccine passports that would be introduced under any plan B this winter.
This is despite ministers gearing up plans to expand the programme of third doses amid spiralling infection rates.
About 45,000 Britons are testing positive for Covid every day officially. But Britain’s largest symptom-tracking study estimated today that the true number of infections could be double that number.
The Prime Minister’s official spokesman today said that Covid passports restricting entry to certain venues would be brought in under Boris Johnson’s plan B.
Asked about changing the criteria for counting as ‘fully vaccinated’ and whether the boosters made the passport system out-of-date, he said: There is no plan to do that currently.
‘There is further work being done on this by clinical experts and will be for them to provide further advice if necessary.’
Last night Health Secretary Sajid Javid used the press conference to urge Britons to come forward for their booster jabs in a bid to speed up the sluggish vaccine campaign — which has only seen a quarter of care home residents revaccinated.
He said that the country was still ahead in the race against the virus thanks to the initial Covid vaccination effort, but claimed that waning immunity meant that lead was ‘narrowing’.
Pleading with the country to get their booster, Mr Javid added that not only would a booster save lives, it would also ‘protect our freedoms’.
‘Boosters could not be more important,’ he said.
Today a scientist advising the Government said the strategy of advising the public to change their behaviour voluntarily to combat the spread of Covid-19 is not going to be effective.
Professor Robert West, a member of the Scientific Pandemic Insights Group on Behaviours (Spi-B), interpreted the Government as putting ‘a bit of an ultimatum to the general public saying, ‘Look it’s up to you and if you don’t do the right thing then we will have to take more draconian steps”.
He told BBC Radio 4’s World at One programme: ‘I don’t really think that’s either going to be effective.
‘But also I think people will be a bit suspicious and think, ”Hang on a minute, what about you? What is the Government doing because it’s not just about us it’s about everyone taking responsibility and that does include the Government”.’Internet Explorer Channel Network