UK could force students to get double vaccination to attend lectures
- Ministers confirmed students may need to get double vaccination to attend offline classes
- Vaccine passports were earlier ruled out by ministers
- England saw a drop in new COVID cases after July 19
Education minister Vicky Ford told The Guardian, “I think it’s really important that young people step forward for their vaccination.” Ford further told BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme, “Obviously, I can’t comment on things that haven’t been announced, but one does need to look at every practicality to make sure that we can get students back safely, and make sure we can continue to prioritise education.”
Adding to it, she said, “We’ve always considered everything that we can do to make sure that all people are safe in education. And the key thing, as we know, to keep transmission down, is to make sure that people get their vaccination.”
However, Ford’s department is not strictly in support of the idea but is concerned about its practicality as universities are mostly self-governed, according to Times.
This comes as the government is pushing for domestic vaccine passports, which were earlier ruled out by ministers.
Keir Starmer, on Monday, talked about the general idea of vaccine passports with The Guardian and said he would “look carefully at what the government puts forward.” “The idea we can go back to mass sporting events without any kind of checks is not one I subscribe to,” he told LBC, and added: “I don’t want to see vaccine passports used on everyday basis.”
Sunday saw a dramatic drop in new COVID cases from 48,161, logged on July 18, to 29,173. Dr Mike Tildesley, a member of the Scientific Pandemic Influenza Modelling group, said to Today, “I would say that the fact the cases have gone down for the last five days or so is, I’m cautiously optimistic. I’m cautiously optimistic about that, but I think we’re going to have to wait another couple of weeks before we see, firstly, the effect of the 19 July relaxation and, second, whether hospital admissions will start to go down.”
He added, “The other thing we do need to look at before we really draw confidence in whether we are seeing everything turning round is what’s happening with hospital admissions and, of course, what’s happening with deaths.”