PM expected to announce reopening date today

By Nikkie Thatcher

- Last updated on GMT

Announcement expected: Prime Minister Boris Johnson will be giving a statement to MPs this afternoon before addressing the nation at a press conference this evening
Announcement expected: Prime Minister Boris Johnson will be giving a statement to MPs this afternoon before addressing the nation at a press conference this evening

Related tags: Government, Legislation, Boris johnson

The Prime Minister is set to reveal his plans for a roadmap out of the third lockdown later today (Monday 22 February) with a focus on “outdoor activities”.

Boris Johnson will be making a statement to Parliament this afternoon before addressing the nation at a Downing Street press conference this evening.

He will lay out the latest data on infection rates, hospital admissions and deaths alongside the data showing the efficiency of vaccines.

Cabinet will meet virtually to discuss the plan this morning, which seeks to balance health, economic and social factors with the latest epidemiological data and advice, the Government said.

Conditions to be met

The roadmap outlines four steps for easing restrictions and before proceeding to the next step, the Government will examine the data to assess the impact of previous easements.

The four conditions that must be met at each phase of the restrictions easing are:

  • The coronavirus vaccine programme continues successfully
  • Evidence shows the vaccines are sufficiently reducing the number of deaths due to the virus or the number of hospitalisations falling
  • Infection rates do not risk a surge in hospitalisations, putting “unsustainable pressure on the NHS”
  • New variants of the virus do not fundamentally change the risk of easing restrictions.

The Government stated the four tests are currently being met so the first step will proceed from 8 March, at which point, the top four priority cohorts for vaccinations will have received a degree of immunity, three weeks after being offered their first dose.

National easing of restrictions

Restrictions will be eased step-by-step across the whole of England at the same time, rather than regional measures.

The Government has also said outdoor settings are known to be lower risk than indoor so outside activities will be opened earlier than indoor ones.

MPs will be giving the opportunity to vote on the measures in the coming weeks.

Related topics: Legislation

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