Lockdown absolutely last resort Zahawi insists as he warns Brits to brace for flu rise

Nadhim Zahawi says lockdown will be ‘absolutely last resort’

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Minister for Business & Industry and COVID Vaccine Deployment Nadhim Zahawi has promised that a lockdown will “absolutely be a last resort”. Boris Johnson is set to unveil his winter plan on Tuesday afternoon, outlining potential restrictions amid concerns for a rise in flu cases later in the year. The new masterplan announcement comes after Chief Medical Officer Prof Chris Whitty confirmed COVID-19 jabs will be given to 12 to 15-year-olds in England from next week. 

Speaking to Sky News, Nadhim Zahawi said: “Lockdowns will be an absolutely last resort.

“What we’re trying to do at the moment is to transition this virus from pandemic to endemic through a massive vaccination programme.

“We know the vaccines have saved over 112,000 lives, 24 million infections.

“We’re about to embark on a massive booster campaign.

He went on: “And of course a flu vaccination programme.

He added: “So the combination of the booster campaign for COVID, which the Prime Minister can say more about today as well the Secretary of State in terms of the JCVI final advice that we have now received and accepted.


The prime minister will reveal his winter plan on Tuesday afternoon, warning “the pandemic is far from over”.


“So I think we’re going to have a bit of a rough winter.”

Boris Johnson is expected announce the start of the booster jabs programme that will target the over-50s.

Westminster believes a third shot of the Pfizer vaccine will help ensure the NHS is not overwhelmed by new cases of the disease as winter approaches.

It follows Monday’s announcement that jabs will be offered for all children aged 12 to 15 in schools starting next week.

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