Prime Minister Boris Johnson Says You Might Need Covid Test To Attend Weddings
Wedding-goers may need to take a Covid test as part of plans to start restart gatherings and events, according to the UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
Johnson gave the daily briefing today on the UK's response to the coronavirus pandemic and suggested that saliva tests undertaken on a wide scale could be key being able to loosen up lockdown restrictions on large events.
Asked if mass testing could allow weddings and other gatherings to being to take place again, the Prime Minister said: "I'm a massive enthusiast for the advantages of lateral flow testing and daily testing - it's getting ever more sophisticated.
"There are tests that you can do now that just require a saliva test, faster than the ones you put up your nose.
"These will really come into their own as we get the vaccination programme really going down the cohorts, and as we start to be able to unlock."
He added: "Eventually of course we want weddings and other such events to go ahead as a result of the vaccination, and the overall programme, and the overall reduction of the disease.
"And lateral flow testing we think will be of continuing benefit to businesses and to events of all kinds as an additional safeguard."
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The lateral flow tests can provide results in under 30 minutes and first became newsworthy last year, when Liverpool was put into regional lockdown but its population given the tests as part of a trial to ascertain the speed of the result they could give and the accuracy.
They've since been used more widely, and the Prime Minister seemed to think they'll be an important of the government's strategy going forward.
Saying they would be 'part of the mix' in his roadmap out of lockdown, which he will be announcing on February 22, Johnson said: "What they're fundamentally useful at doing is telling you whether you're likely to be infectious, much more accurately than they can tell you whether you're infected."
Johnson was joined for the briefing by the Government's chief scientific advisor, Professor Patrick Vallance, and he backed the Prime Minister up, saying that lateral flow tests 'are a really important part of our toolkit'.
He added: "Lateral flow tests are good at picking up people with high viral load who are the most infectious."
The lateral flow tests can detect the so-called Kent variant of Covid and Health Secretary Matt Hancock recently announced a new contract with Derby-based manufacturer SureScreen Diagnostics for 20 million of them.
Over 12.6 million Britons have now had their first jab of the Covid vaccine, with all the main nine priority groups set to have been injected by the government's own deadline of February 15.
All eyes are now on what the PM will reveal in just under two weeks time.
Topics: UK News
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