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Booster jabs now in the pipeline before half the people have had their first jab!
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Booster jabs now in the pipeline before half the people have had their first jab!

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Relaxing of restrictions is now starting

Governments never cease to amaze and not always in a good way! It has now been announced that booster jabs can be expected in the autumn before half the people have even had their first jab!

Yesterday we pointed out that a year had gone by and there had been no preparation for the day when everyone would need to show they had been vaccinated and only now is there serious talk about covid passports. But the vaccinations minister has now announced that there will be booster jabs available in the autumn for the high risk sectors of the population. Moreover these boosters will already have been tailored to take care of the variants.

This is all very nice indeed but I suspect there will be a lot of people saying that they would like to get the first jab inside their arm, let alone their second and of course there are still many who would like their second jab. And so it all rolls on.

It is true that we are very fortunate to be able to say that our vaccination programme has advanced as well as it has. Give a thought to how we would have been faring had the vaccination programme not started yet. It is likely that we would have been in a real pickle – it is only as good as it is now because the vaccination came on board a few months ago. And although mercifully the death rate has come down, the rate of new cases has now levelled off at over 6000 a day, higher than the lower figures which were being achieved a week ago. That does not bode well.

Looking at current trends, yesterday’s figures show that the UK came 24th in the list of new cases at 6187. That is not so much because the UK has achieved a good low figure of new cases; sadly it is a reflection of how bad it is elsewhere. The UK is still 6th in the world in terms of total number of cases at 4.3 million, just trailing France at 4.4 million. And the UK is still 5th in the world in terms of number of deaths at 126515 although current deaths are down at 70, back to 24th again. Not so good in the general numbers but a great improvement for us representing 1856 deaths per million of population, 9th in that particular league.

As always you can see the figures for yourself at Johns Hopkins:

Today Wales has opened up internal travel although you are advised not to travel to beauty spots. Presumably a rush those areas will just exacerbate the problem – which just goes to show that the authorities really do not believe it is safe yet! Is it premature to let people loose? On Monday, 29th March, the restrictions in England will be relaxed. Again, don’t get too excited. The prudent amongst us will still stay at home and only go out when necessary. Indeed the travel rule in England will be “minimal travel” so no free movement like Wales.

The next two months are going to be critical in how the road map unfolds – will it prove to be workable? Time will tell and don’t forget the clocks go forward by one hour tonight.

Adrian Leopard 27-03-21

Photo Neil Mark Thomas

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