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People should remain cautious as restrictions ease further

People should socialise outside as far as possible, maintain social distancing and ‘hug cautiously’ as coronavirus restrictions ease, a former chief scientific adviser to the government has said.

Professor Sir Mark Walport, a member of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), warned that the pandemic is at a ‘perilous moment’ and said it will be ‘extremely important’ to keep a close eye on the numbers over the next few weeks.

More than 20m adults in the UK have had both doses of a coronavirus vaccine.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock hailed the milestone, which he said means millions now ‘have the fullest possible protection from this virus’.

Prime Minister, Boris Johnson said “we have reached another milestone in our road map out of lockdown, but we must take this next step with a heavy dose of caution.”

Mr Johnson said the government was keeping the variant “under close observation” and “taking swift action where infection rates are rising”.

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The Indian variant is causing concern

There are growing fears the spread of the Indian Covid-19 variant could delay the end of lockdown next month.

Professor Adam Finn, from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI), has suggested it is “perfectly likely” things could turn out differently to what the government has planned for lifting all social-distancing restrictions on 21 June.

He told Sky News: “I really hope that these current concerns around this variant evaporate, that everything goes to plan, but I think we just have to accept the possibility that we’re in for another big wave and that we will have to change what we’re doing.”

On Sunday 16 May the latest Government announcement revealed that 36,573,354 people have received the first dose of a Coronavirus vaccine and 20,103,658 have received a second dose. It was reported that 1,926 new positive cases & 4 deaths within a 28 days of a positive test were reported across the UK. 

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