Government rejects NHS calls to bring face masks back and ban indoor mixing

The government is rejecting calls from the NHS to bring back face masks and limits on indoor mixing. No 10 has refused calls from the NHS to bring back only outdoor socialising.

He insists that Covid is now like any other respiratory disease. Last night the NHS Confederation accused No 10 of ‘abandoning interest in Covid’.

But a government spokeswoman said the government’s “plan for living with Covid” still stood. “There are no changes to our advice and our plan for living with Covid still stands,” she confirmed.

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“Thanks to a combination of vaccination and treatment and our better understanding of the virus, we are now able to manage it as we do with other respiratory infections, so that remains the case with our approach.”

It comes as Health Secretary Sajid Javid criticized China’s Zero Covid policy. “Disturbing reports from countries still applying ‘Zero Covid’ show this dangerous mistake for what it is,” Mr Javid said.

“Proud that the UK has led the world in learning to live with Covid. Freedom, with responsibility, should always be the default.” Shanghai residents have been confined to their homes for three weeks.

Many describe an increasingly desperate situation, with families unable to leave their homes or to stock up on food and basic necessities, while those who tested positive for the virus were forced to go to centers quarantine where conditions were sometimes described as overcrowded and unsanitary.

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