Coronavirus UK news LIVE – June 21 lockdown end WON'T end self-isolation for vaccinated Brits despite workplace return

VACCINATED Brits will still have to self-isolate for ten days after coming into contact with someone with Covid-19 after restrictions lift.

According to the Telegraph, the rule will remain in place even after June 21, when the Government aims to axe all Covid restrictions.

It comes as Brits were urged NOT to jet off to amber list countries, including Spain, after the nation today opened its borders to visitors.

As tourists flocked to Spain yesterday, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said that people should not travel to amber countries except for essential reasons – but Spain's tourism minister said the country was in a "good place".

Meanwhile, the coronavirus pandemic will be declared OVER if it's proven vaccines have stopped hospital admissions rising, a top Oxford jab doctor has claimed.

Professor Andrew Pollard, from the University of Oxford, told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme on Monday: “If the current generation of vaccines are able to stop people going into hospital, whilst there is still mild infections, people are getting the common cold with the virus, then the pandemic is over.”

Meanwhile, Dr Jenny Harries on Sunday said the prospects for ending all coronavirus lockdown restrictions in England on June 21 are “looking good”. According to Public Health England, the Pfizer vaccine is 88% effective against the symptoms of the variant after the second dose, while the AstraZeneca proved 60 per cent effective.

Read our coronavirus live blog below for the latest news and updates…

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    GRAPH: UK COVID-19 CASES AND DEATHS PER DAY

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    CONTINUED…

    Even before the pandemic, cancer diagnoses were increasing at a rate of approximately 5% a year, Prof O'Reilly said, adding that Covid will further affect that number.

    "Cancer care is time-dependent," he said.

    "For example, colonoscopies are the gold standard of diagnosis for bowel cancers. Pre-pandemic, urgent referrals were seen within one month. Now, as a result of disruptions to service, 60% of referrals are waiting longer than three months."

    According to the IHCA, one in five hospital consultant posts are not filled as needed, meaning patients must wait longer for diagnosis and treatment.

    The organisation maintains that, until staffing levels are improved, the situation is unlikely to change.

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    COVID DISRUPTION COULD INCREASE CANCER MORTALITY FOR 'NEXT DECADE', MEDIC WARNS

    Delays to cancer diagnosis and treatment caused by Covid-19 could increase cancer mortality for the "next decade", a consultant medical oncologist has warned.

    Professor Seamus O'Reilly, of Cork University Hospital and the Mercy University Hospital, said the pandemic has "enormous implications" for time-dependent cancer care.

    He added that the health service will struggle to cope with the backlog of patients without hiring additional oncologists and other medical specialists.

    The professor made the remarks on behalf of the Irish Hospital Consultants Association (IHCA) during European Week Against Cancer.

    "The Covid pandemic has impacted cancer services. Patients were concerned about coming into hospital. Services had to be curtailed due to social distancing and redeployment of staff," he said.

    "Our health service still has not returned to normal. This has enormous implications, and our concern as oncologists is of delayed cancer diagnosis occurring as a result."

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     SPAIN EXPECTS TO BE ADDED TO GREEN LIST ON JUNE 7 AS BRITS ARRIVE AFTER THE COUNTRY LIFTED TRAVEL RESTRICTIONS 

    Spain expects to be added to green list on June 7 as Brits arrive after the country lifted travel restrictions

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    COVID-19 TRAFFIC LIGHT TRAVEL LIST: WHAT COLOUR ARE SELECTED COUNTRIES?

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    BRITS DESPERATE TO SEE A DENTIST (CONTINUED…)

    A damning report from watchdog Healthwatch England suggests patients are being told they may not be seen until 2024 at the earliest.

    But the same surgeries are encouraging their patients to go private instead, offering appointments within a week.

    The majority cannot afford the costly service, leading to a chaotic hunt for an available dentist.

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    BRITS DESPERATE TO SEE A DENTIST ARE PULLING OWN TEETH OUT AMID THREE YEAR NHS WAIT

    BRITS who have been desperate to see a dentist during the pandemic have resorted to pulling their own teeth out.

    Practises have reported that they have “thousands” of people waiting to be seen with only a couple of dentists on hand.

    Someone who works at a dental practice in Cornwall said: “We have in excess of 8,000 patients and only two dentists, the waiting list for NHS dentist is years and we have so many enquiries every day and unable to help.”

    Delays are only worsening symptoms, leaving people with pain, swellings, and broken teeth, fillings and dentures. 

    Even those seeking emergency dental care by calling NHS 111 claim they were told to "use salt water" for relief. Other patients have been told to use DIY tooth filling kits while they wait for an appointment.

    Read more here.

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    VACCINE APPOINTMENT REGISTRATION OPENS FOR SCOTS AGED UNDER 30

    Scots aged 18 to 29 can now register to receive details of their coronavirus vaccination dates by text or email, rather than by letter.

    Vaccinations for the final adult age group are expected to begin in mid-June, but a two-week registration period is now open to receive digital alerts so 18 to 29-years olds do not miss an invitation for a vaccine appointment.

    Registration is not compulsory and those who do not register will still receive an offer of a vaccine appointment through the post – as long as their GP's details are up to date.

    To register for alerts about appointments, those who are eligible should visithttps://register.vacs.nhs.scot before Friday June 4.

    Once completed, the NHS Scotland registration form says applicants will be located in the "population register" and they will receive a text message, email or both with the result and next steps, or will be contacted if there are any problems with identification

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    BRITS UNDER 30 COULD BE OFFERED COVID VACCINE WITHIN DAYS

    Brits under 30 could be offered their Covid vaccine by the end of the week – as hopes for June 21’s unlocking rise.

    It comes after worries the Indian variant could delay “Freedom Day”, but as the speedy jabs rollout continues experts say the signs are now “looking good”.

    Last week the age eligability for vaccines was lowered three times – with those aged 32 and 33 now able to book in.

    It is expected to be lowered further within days, with under 30s offered their slots at the end of the week.

    It brings fresh hope for the full unlocking next month, after the variant’s emergence cast doubt on the roadmap.

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    COVID-19 TRAFFIC LIGHT TRAVEL LIST: WHAT COLOUR ARE SELECTED COUNTRIES?

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    HALF OF WEEKEND VACCINE APPOINTMENTS MISSED AT GLASGOW'S SSE HYDRO

    Around half the coronavirus vaccine appointments at a major concert venue and vaccination centre this weekend were missed, it has emerged.

    The PA news agency understands there were many cancellations and non-attendances on Saturday and Sunday at The SSE Hydro in Glasgow amid rising case numbers in the city.

    The concert venue originally formed part of the NHS Louisa Jordan hospital, which closed at the end of March having opened in the Scottish Event Campus (SEC) last year, and has the capacity to administer up to 10,000 jabs per day.

    A statement from NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde (NHSGGC) said: "We want to thank everyone who has come forward for a vaccine so far.

    "We've had incredible success to date and this is a testament to the hard work of all those staff from across NHSGGC who have been involved in the rollout of the programme.

    "We have now vaccinated over 98% of people over the age 50 with their first dose.

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    FLIGHTS TO SPAIN EXPECTED TO SOAR TO 80% A DAY

    Flights to Spain are now expected to soar to 80 per cent a day – meaning an estimated 16,000 passengers are set to fly to the popular holiday destination.

    Despite the surge in flights, the PM and government have warned Brits not to travel to Spain as it remains on the amber list.

    Return to the UK from amber-listed countries means travellers will need to self-isolate for ten days and will also have to take a PCR test on day two and day eight of self-isolation. 

    The advice remains for Spain, according to the Foreign Office website today: "We continue to advise against all but essential travel to Spain, including the Balearic Islands, but excluding the Canary Islands."

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    GRAPH: COVID VACCINATIONS IN THE UK

     

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    DAILY UK COVID DEATHS FALL TO THREE BUT CASES UP 17% IN A WEEK

    UK Covid deaths have fallen with three deaths reported today – almost half the grim number a week ago.

    But new cases have risen 17 per cent since last Monday, with 2,439 new infections in the last 24 hours.

    The Indian variant has created hotspots of outbreaks around the country, with numbers rising swiftly in the past few weeks.

    But the vaccine rollout is continuing at pace to tackle the rise of the variant.

    Jabs are stopping people getting seriously ill or dying – with Pfizer and AstraZeneca’s vaccines proven to be effective against it with two doses.

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    BRITS WARNED TO STAY AWAY FROM SPAIN

    Britons have been urged not to travel to Spain after Madrid opened the doors to tourists from the UK.

    The country remains on the Government’s “amber list”, meaning people returning will need to take a series of Covid-19 tests and self-isolate at home.

    Business minister Anne-Marie Trevelyan told Sky News: “The Prime Minister has been clear that, for now, amber means ‘please don’t go unless there is an urgent family reason and so on’ because we are still trying to slowly move through our road map to being able to open up on June 21 and we want to do that in a steady and careful way.”

    She added that “we hope very much that, obviously, the amber numbers will become more green in due course” but “at the moment, today, that means amber countries really aren’t safe to go to”.

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    ORDERING DRINKS AT THE BAR COULD RETURN AS BORIS CONSIDERS ENDING TABLE SERVICE RULE

    Ordering drinks at the bar could make a return as Prime Minister Boris Johnson considers ending the table service rule and social distancing when lockdown ends on June 21.

    Ministers are reportedly discussing making the changes as Britain continues on the path towards freedom from Covid lockdowns next month.

    Nightclubs are expected to reopen in June while large events will be able to go ahead.

    Results from the Cabinet Office’s review into social distancing measures as lockdown easing continues could be revealed this week, the Telegraph reported.

    Read more here.

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    MORE THAN 1M SIGN UP FOR NHS APP ‘VACCINE PASSPORT’

    More than 1.3 million people have registered with the NHS app since it was announced users will be able to show if they have received the Covid-19 vaccine.

    Health Secretary Matt Hancock praised the “unparalleled pace” in which the vaccine status function was added to the app, since its announcement on May 7.

    The app enables users to show proof they have received the vaccine, should it be required for international travel.

    It has more than 4.8 million registered users and also enables people to book GP appointments, order repeat prescriptions and view GP and hospital records, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) said.

    Since May 17 – when the vaccine status function was added – people have logged into the app more than four million times.

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    BRITS UNDER 30 COULD BE OFFERED COVID VACCINE WITHIN DAYS

    Brits under 30 could be offered their Covid vaccine by the end of the week – as hopes for June 21's unlocking rise.

    It comes after worries the Indian variant could delay "Freedom Day", but as the speedy jabs rollout continues experts say the signs are now "looking good".

    Last week the age eligability for vaccines was lowered three times – with those aged 32 and 33 now able to book in.

    It is expected to be lowered further within days, with under 30s offered their slots at the end of the week.

    It brings fresh hope for the full unlocking next month, after the variant's emergence cast doubt on the roadmap.

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    MAPPED: ALL THE PLACES WITH SURGE TESTING IN THE UK

     

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    CHART: COVID-19 JABS GIVEN SO FAR

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    COVID SURGE TESTS ROLLED OUT IN PARTS OF HAMPSHIRE TO CATCH CASES OF INDIAN VARIANT

    SURGE Covid tests have been rolled out in parts of Hampshire in a bid to catch cases of the Indian variant.

    NHS Test and Trace – in partnership with the local authority – is launching new additional testing and genomic sequencing targeting north east Hampshire – including the Hart District, Rushmoor Borough and the Surrey border.

    This surge testing is being deployed following the identification of a small number of confirmed cases of the variant first identified in India, B1.617.2. All the confirmed cases have been instructed to self-isolate and their contacts have been identified.

    Everyone aged 12 and over who lives or works in these postcodes is strongly encouraged to take a Covid-19 PCR test from Wednesday 26 May, whether they are showing symptoms or not.

    Further targeted testing is also being deployed at a school in the area, which starts today. The local authority is endeavouring to reach out to anyone who should be tested.

    Read more here.

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    COVID CASES

    Health Secretary Matt Hancock described yesterday as a "huge day" for the vaccine effort as the total number of jabs given out hit 60,587,098.

    He tweeted: "This is a fantastic milestone in our fight against this virus. Thank you to everyone involved in our national effort. When you get the call, get the jab."

    Yesterday Dr Jenny Harries, chief executive of the UK Health Security Agency, confirmed it's "looking good" for the final stage.

    It comes after a study found Pfizer's vaccine is 88 per cent ­effective against the Indian variant after two jabs while AstraZeneca proved 60 per cent effective.

    Both vaccines were 33 per cent effective against symptomatic disease from the Indian variant three weeks after the first dose, compared with about 50 per cent against the Kent strain.

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    BRITS UNDER 30 COULD BE OFFERED COVID VACCINE BY END OF THIS WEEK

    Brits under 30 could be offered their Covid vaccine by the end of the week – as hopes for June 21's unlocking rise.

    It comes after worries the Indian variant could delay "Freedom Day", but as the speedy jabs rollout continues experts say the signs are now "looking good".

    Last week the age eligability for vaccines was lowered three times – with those aged 32 and 33 now able to book in.

    It is expected to be lowered further within days, with under 30s offered their slots at the end of the week.

    It brings fresh hope for the full unlocking next month, after the variant's emergence cast doubt on the roadmap.

  • Joseph Gamp

    DAILY UK COVID DEATHS FALL TO THREE BUT CASES UP 17% IN A WEEK

    UK Covid deaths have fallen with three deaths reported today – almost half the grim number a week ago.

    But new cases have risen 17 per cent since last Monday, with 2,439 new infections in the last 24 hours.

    The Indian variant has created hotspots of outbreaks around the country, with numbers rising swiftly in the past few weeks.

    But the vaccine rollout is continuing at pace to tackle the rise of the variant.

    Jabs are stopping people getting seriously ill or dying – with Pfizer and AstraZeneca's vaccines proven to be effective against it with two doses.

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    HOLIDAYMAKERS URGED NOT TO JET OFF TO SPAIN

    Holidaymakers are being urged not to jet off to amber list countries, including Spain.

    Business minister Anne-Marie Trevelyan said scientists still think there is "too great a risk" in travelling to amber list countries for non-urgent reasons such as holidays.

    However, Spain's tourism minister said the country was in a good place and he was sure it would make the UK's green list when a review is carried out in the first week of June.

    Spain has officially lifted restrictions for UK travellers from Monday, with visitors no longer needing to take a PCR Covid-19 test. vTourists going to Spain will still have to quarantine on their return under UK rules.

    Mrs Trevelyan told Times Radio: "The reality is, at the moment, amber countries are still not meeting the criteria for our scientists to say that they should be green. So the recommendation remains don't go unless you have to, and remember that, if you do go, you will have to quarantine for 10 days and that will be monitored. The reason we ask people still not to go is because there is still too great a risk as far as our scientists are concerned."

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