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World Ministers consider dropping self-isolation rules for those with two jabs

16:26  19 june  2021
16:26  19 june  2021 Source:   news.sky.com

Jabs for votes: Lebanon's oligarchs turn to Covid bribery

  Jabs for votes: Lebanon's oligarchs turn to Covid bribery Lebanon's cash-strapped leaders are bribing their base with free Covid-19 jabs ahead of next year's elections, in what observers say is the latest variant on an old corruption trick. But when a political party offered him free jabs, he chose not to wait for the government. "I have been unemployed for six months. How would I have afforded vaccines for two people?" said the 52-year-old, who declined to name the party that sponsored his Sputnik dose. Out of nearly 900,000 people who have received vaccines in Lebanon, nearly 60,000 benefited from party handouts, said Mohamad Haidar, a health ministry adviser.

a group of people sitting and looking at the camera: The 'race is firmly on' between the vaccine rollout and the highly transmissible Delta variant, it is warned © PA The 'race is firmly on' between the vaccine rollout and the highly transmissible Delta variant, it is warned

The government is considering dropping forced self-isolation for those who have had two coronavirus jabs, Sky News understands.

Sky News political correspondent Rob Powell said "it is early days but the idea is being discussed in Westminster and people would instead have to take daily tests".

The idea would only be brought in later in the year once the adult population has been offered both doses, Powell said.

He added that "this idea of offering more privileges to people who've had two jabs is clearly in the ascendancy".

Jabs for votes: Lebanon's oligarchs turn to Covid bribery

  Jabs for votes: Lebanon's oligarchs turn to Covid bribery Lebanon's cash-strapped leaders are bribing their base with free Covid-19 jabs ahead of next year's elections, in what observers say is the latest variant on an old corruption trick. The "vaccine for vote" system builds on decades-old patronage practices that have seen leaders buy their way into office by offering voters money or public sector employment. But with state resources stretched to their limit by a severe economic crisis and international aid dwindling due to a failure to deliver promised reforms, politicians are turning to Covid jabs to stock up on political capital.

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It comes after public health expert Linda Bauld said those who have had both doses of a COVID-19 vaccine may not have to self-isolate for 10 days in future.

She added that any change in regulations could see the UK following the US template - and the rule could stand even if they had come into contact with someone infected with the virus.

Professor Bauld, who is an expert in public health at the University of Edinburgh highlighted repeated statements by the UK government's chief medical adviser Professor Chris Whitty and others that COVID-19 would not disappear and society would have to learn to live with it.

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She made her comments as it was warned that a third wave of coronavirus infections "is definitely under way" and the "race is firmly on" between the vaccine rollout and the highly transmissible Delta or Indian variant.

Latest data showed the Delta variant now accounts for almost all of the UK's coronavirus cases, according to Public Health England.

A new COVID-19 Rapid Test advice sign seen in Central London. (Photo by Vuk Valcic/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images) © Getty A new COVID-19 Rapid Test advice sign seen in Central London. (Photo by Vuk Valcic/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

It comes as everyone aged 18 and over can now book to get vaccinated in England.

On the likelihood of a change in the quarantine rules for those fully vaccinated, Prof Bauld told Times Radio: "It's already in place in the US.

"The Centre for Disease Control changed their guidance a while ago to say that people who had had both doses of the vaccine and about 10-14 days after the second dose didn't have to self-isolate, so I think we are moving in that direction."

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  Coronavirus cases rise by a third in a week with 10,321 new infections Today's case total is 2,583 more than the 7,738 recorded last week, with Britain's death toll standing at 14 and data up to June 18 showing 73,766,593 jabs have been given in the UK so far.Today's case total - 2,583 more than the 7,738 recorded last week - comes amid fears that the UK will not be able to outpace the Delta variant with the current rate of vaccination.

She added: "As we've heard repeatedly from Chris Whitty and others, this virus isn't going to disappear.

"We're going to have to live alongside it, means we are going to have infections in future, so being a contact of someone infected will always be a possibility."

A man sits at an outside table of a cafe in Soho, in London, Monday, June 14, 2021. (AP Photo/Alberto Pezzali) © Getty A man sits at an outside table of a cafe in Soho, in London, Monday, June 14, 2021. (AP Photo/Alberto Pezzali)

Professor Adam Finn, who advises the government on the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), described as "interesting" the idea of scrapping 10-day self-isolation for double-jabbed people.

He told Times Radio: "We know that the vaccine, particularly after two doses, is highly effective at stopping you from getting seriously ill, 20 times less likely to end up in hospital.

"We also know that it will reduce your chances of getting milder illness and infecting other people, but it's probably less good at doing that than it is preventing you getting seriously ill, so it's a kind of balance of risk thing."

Highlighting the rising number of cases, the University of Bristol academic told the BBC: "It's going up, perhaps we can be a little bit optimistic it's not going up any faster, but nevertheless it's going up, so this third wave is definitely under way.

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  'Great hope' restrictions can end early on 5 July and UK not in third COVID wave, says expert The UK could open up "sooner rather than later" thanks to the huge numbers of people being vaccinated - and the country is not experiencing a third wave of infections, a vaccine expert has told Sky News. © PA People queue for COVID jabs at Tottenham Hotspur's stadium on Sunday Brendan Wren, professor of vaccinology at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, said that having more than 81% of the adult population with a first coronavirus jab, and 59% with both doses is "very encouraging".

"We can conclude that the race is firmly on between the vaccine programme, particularly getting older people's second doses done, and the Delta variant third wave."

Immunologist Professor Paul Moss told Sky News: "The vaccines that we have are very, very effective at preventing severe disease from the Delta variant."

Highlighting the move to start vaccinating the over-18s, he said: "There's no doubt if we can get that first dose in we will reduce the number of infections."

While having to be aware of new strains of the virus, Prof Moss added: "There's no evidence yet of a variant emerging that is resistant to the vaccines."

The latest figures from NHS England show that an estimated four in five adults in England have received their first dose of COVID-19 vaccine.

The data shows that 35,507,916 first doses have been delivered up to 17 June, the equivalent of 80.2% of all people aged 18 and over.

Stay alert to stop coronavirus spreading - here is the latest government guidance. If you think you have the virus, don't go to the GP or hospital, stay indoors and get advice online. Only call NHS 111 if you cannot cope with your symptoms at home; your condition gets worse; or your symptoms do not get better after seven days. In parts of Wales where 111 isn't available, call NHS Direct on 0845 46 47. In Scotland anyone with symptoms is advised to self-isolate for seven days. In Northern Ireland, call your GP.

England to hit new vaccine milestone today with half of under-30s jabbed against COVID-19 .
Half of all adults aged under 30 in England will have received a first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine by Sunday, the NHS has said. © Reuters Appetite for jabs remains high as the vaccination programme enters its final stages. File pic More than 4.2 million people aged between 18 and 29 have received a jab in the three weeks after the coronavirus vaccination programme was opened up to those in their twenties. Your browser does not support this video Vaccines Minister Nadhim Zahawi praised the "phenomenal achievement".

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