British PM announces expiration of strict Plan B COVID restrictions

2022-01-20 13:10:53Xinhua Editor : Li Yan ECNS App Download
Special: Battle Against Novel Coronavirus

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced on Wednesday that next week will see the end of Plan B COVID restrictions, which include mandatory rules for mask-wearing, vaccine certificates and guidance to work from home.

The prime minister also told the House of Commons, lower house of the British Parliament, that the legal requirement on people with coronavirus to self-isolate would be allowed to lapse when the self-isolation regulations expire on March 24, and that date could be brought forward.

In addition, Johnson announced an immediate end to the need for pupils to wear masks at secondary schools, but said the government will still suggest the use of face coverings in cramped or crowded spaces.

Restrictions on care home visits will also be further eased, with the changes to be set out in the coming days.

However, Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has said face masks will still be needed for travelers on Transport for London services, despite the prime minister's earlier announcement that mandatory mask-wearing will be scrapped from next Thursday.

Latest data shows the Omicron wave has "peaked nationally" and hospital admissions in London are falling, Johnson said.

Britain registered 108,069 new COVID-19 infections, bringing the total number of coronavirus cases in the country to 15,506,750, according to official figures released Wednesday.

The country also reported a further 359 coronavirus-related deaths, raising its national death toll from COVID-19 to 152,872.

More than 90 percent of people aged 12 and over in Britain have had their first dose of vaccine, more than 83 percent have received both doses, and over 63 percent have received a booster, according to the latest figures. 


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