Over 10 million people have now received their first dose of the Covid vaccine; there is rising optimism that we might finally be on the way out of the pandemic that has gripped society for almost a year. So, what does life look like once the UK population has received the vaccine?
When will life return to normal?
Speaking to BBC Breakfast, England's chief medical officer Professor Chris Whitty assured the public he is “confident” that life will return to what it was pre coronavirus, saying: “I am confident we will go back to life as it was before at some point, that’s not in doubt.”
Importantly, he reminded the public that measures such as social distancing and wearing a face mask could remain in place for at least several months after the vaccine roll-out is complete.
“We’ve got to make this sustainable because we got to be able to maintain this for several more weeks now,” he added. “We’re really going to have to do a significant action for all of us for several more weeks until probably some time in the spring for very much of what we have to do."
Will we be out of restriction in spring?
Prof Whitty has stated that as there is a hopeful sight of restrictions easing in spring, the virus does not just “go away” and we may have to reintroduce measures when necessary. “We might have to bring a few in next winter, for example, that’s possible, because winter will benefit the virus," he said.
Will the vaccine slow the transmission rate?
“We now know that the Oxford vaccine also reduces transmission and that will help us all get out of this pandemic,” Mr Hancock said in an interview Wednesday morning with the BBC.
During this study, “they reveal that the vaccine efficacy is higher at longer prime-boost intervals, and that a single dose of the vaccine is 76% effective from 22- to up to 90-days post vaccination.” This is fantastic news for the interim between receiving the second dose and should give people confidence that the vaccine is protecting themselves and suppressing transmission rates.
Will masks every go away?
Mask-wearing will persist indefinitely in Britain despite the roll-out of a Covid vaccine, the deputy chief medical officer has indicated.
Prof Van-Tam said during an exclusive interview with The Sun: "The pandemic has changed a lot of things. It has changed the way you and I approach hand hygiene.
"We all carry hand sanitiser around now, we all expect in most of the places we go into that hand sanitiser is provided at the door.
“I think there are going to be people who make a personal decision to say, you know what, when I’m in a crowded place in the winter I’m going to put a face covering on. When I’m on a tube I am going to put a face covering on."
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