The health minister said England could hopefully enjoy a “happy and free summer” in six months.
Matt Hancock warned that the nation would have “a tough few months” ahead of them before the lockdown restriction could be relaxed – although he refused to set a date when the restrictions could be lifted.
Mr Hancock appeared on the regional television show BBC Politics East where he made a rare and optimistic comment on what might come in the future.
“Hopefully in six months we will be in the middle of a happy and free summer in the UK,” he said. The mirror reports.
It comes despite Cabinet Secretary Liz Truss – half an hour later – saying it was “far too early” to know if the British could be abroad for the summer vacation.
Brits returning from Red List countries will soon have to quarantine themselves in expensive gated hotels, while others will have to be quarantined in their homes upon arrival.
When asked when the policy would end, she told LBC the virus was “unpredictable” and “it would be very dangerous for a government minister to go on your show and make promises about people’s summer vacation.”
Ms. Truss was also unable to say whether pubs, restaurants and theaters should remain closed in summer.
The trade minister told the BBC: “I don’t think any of us have a crystal ball in which we know what’s going to happen in the fall. What we have to do is work really hard now instead of speculating in the middle and long.” Term.”
When asked after July 31, Mr. Hancock did not speak about it and was not specifically asked about foreign holidays.
But he said: “I am very confident that by then the vast majority of adults will be vaccinated.
“These are not just the clinically vulnerable groups, I go to all groups, people like me, I’m in my 40s and healthy and we’ll all get through.”
“That offers a high level of protection. The more people take the vaccine, the more we will be protected as a society …
“I think we are going to have a great summer, but until then we will have a tough couple of months.”
It came when the UK vaccine rollout increased more than 500,000 first doses in a single day for the first time.
NHS England gave 7,792,996 people the first doses of a burst yesterday yesterday – up 539,691 the day before.
That was more than 1% of the total adult population of England, according to NHS statistics.
The UK numbers alone mean the UK has crossed half a million for the first time in one day.
The previous record for Great Britain was 491,970 first doses on January 23.
The numbers indicate when people received a first dose. They don’t always exactly coincide with the date people got the bump.
The UK has already given initial doses of the Covid vaccine to more than 8 million vulnerable people, NHS and caregivers.
Scientists are waiting for data to show whether a sting will keep people from passing on Covid to others – instead of simply preventing them from getting sick themselves.
Dr. Susan Hopkins, Incident Director for COVID-19 at Public Health England, told the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show, “What we want to see is a divergence in case rates in the over 70s and over 80s from the younger age groups being vaccinated to show that they lose weight faster.
“We have now vaccinated 80% of those over 80 years of age and the numbers have also increased very quickly in the under-80 age group.”
“We therefore expect that the effects of this vaccine in this age group and also the effects on hospitalization will be visible in the next two weeks.”
Confirmed cases are also falling – the UK’s moving average of confirmed new daily cases has dropped from 61,237 on New Years Day to 29,236 by January 22nd.
The Sunday Telegraph reported today that despite the introduction of the vaccine, social distancing may be required for the rest of the year.
Government scientists have warned that if a vaccine isn’t 85% effective at preventing the spread of Covid – and preventing serious illness, they cannot abandon other restrictions.
Modeling by SPI-M, a subset of Sage, suggests the UK will see a third major surge in deaths unless the shocks dramatically affect transmission.
As the numbers show, cases of both the South African and Brazilian variants, which are considered to be more contagious, have increased in recent days.
The vaccines are thought to reduce transmission by about 65%, but it’s unclear.
Ms. Truss declined to rule out the need for some social distancing measures for the rest of the year.
“Autumn is a very long time away. We need to focus on finding the right policies and measures so that we can end the virus crisis as soon as possible,” she told the BBC.
She added, “We can only open up the economy, open schools, when it is safe to do so and when we have reduced community transmission. At each decision point, we will decide … which steps are safe.”
Dr. Public Health England’s Susan Hopkins warned that relaxation measures must be “very slowly, very carefully” to avoid an increase in infections.
She added that experts expect the coronavirus vaccine to have an impact on those over 80 in the next two weeks. Almost 8.5 million people have now got their sting.
When asked when the lockdown would be eased, Hancock told BBC Politics East, “We just don’t know, nobody knows. It’s about how quickly we can get people to safety.
“There is still a lot of pressure in hospitals across east England.”
He added, “I’ll follow the data and see how the vaccination rollout goes.”