The number of daily tests for Covid being done seems to have settled at around 830k per day. I suspect we shall see this kind of figure throughout August although it may rise when people are testing instead of isolating. The numbers positive are 30,215 yesterday and 31, 808, only a very slight rise but not significant when you look at 7 day figures when you will see there has been 12k less positive tests, a drop of 14.4%. The rate of positive tests remains at 270/100k of population. Looking at hospital data, this has shown some improvement as well. There were 5,631 in hospital on 5th August with Covid 19 compared with 5,686 on the 4th August. The number admitted rose a little from 727 on 1st August to 778 on 4th August. The numbers on ventilators dropped over the two days from 881 to 871.
Deaths, as expected continue to rise for a while yet. There were 86 registered yesterday and 92 today. These figures will now drop over the weekend only to rise again on Tuesday next.
We are slowly building the numbers vaccinated, today we have 46.96 million with both jabs (82.8%) and 39.04 million with one (73.8%). This still means 26% are not fully protected.
Perhaps the important news is that the famous R rate for England is now 0.8 to 1.1 . Only a week or so ago it was 1.4. If the level is below 1.0 then the virus is in retreat. We are so nearly there we must not relax any of the precautions we are taking just yet.
If you are travelling abroad or trying to return to the UK you will be concerned with the travel requirements which are scheduled to change at 4 am on Sunday 8th August. I would urge you to read them on the Gov.UK web site where you will find detailed information country by country. Rules are liable to change without notice both here in the UK and other countries. You must check your circumstances very carefully and regularly to make sure you do not miss a change. It is very important to realise that not all available vaccines are recognised in most countries. For example, England only accepts vaccines that have been approved by US or EU regulators. If you have another brand of vaccine, you may find it not acceptable.
For the moment the traffic light system still applies. Red, Amber and Green. There is also a Green Watch list which means the country could suddenly change to Amber if the figures suggest a worsening situation.
The following list covers most of the changes which come into effect at 4am on Sunday 8th August.
- Bahrain goes from Red to Amber
- Georgia goes from Amber to Red
- India goes from Red to Amber
- Mayotte goes from Amber to Red
- Mexico goes from Amber to Red
- Quatar goes from Red to Amber
- Reunion goes from Amber to Red
- UAE goes Red to Amber
If you have been in a Red list country or have travelled through one before returning to England you will only be allowed entry if you have British or Irish nationality or you have resident rights. If status is changing on 8th August the rules on the date of entry apply. Before you travel you must have a negative PCR Covid test. You must book a Government quarantine package in a designated hotel and 2 more tests for days 2 and 8. And finally complete a passenger locator form. On arrival in the UK you must travel straight to the quarantine hotel and have the two Covid tests.
- Germany goes Amber to green
- Latvia goes Amber to Green
- Norway goes Amber to Green
- Madeira goes to the Green Watch list
- Romania goes Amber to Green
- Slovakia goes Amber to Green
- Slovenia goes Amber to Green
If you have been in or travelled through an Amber country on your return to the UK you must have a negative Covid test within 3 days of your journey to England, you must also book and pay for 2 further Covid tests whether or not you have been immunised. You must also fill in the passenger locator form. If you are fully vaccinated you must have a further test on the 2nd day after arrival. Your immunisations may not be accepted if you were not immunised in the UK or in the UK overseas programme or had a USA or EU approved vaccine. If you are not satisfactorily immunised, you must isolate at home or where you are staying for ten days and do the tests on days 2 and 8. If you are in transit through the UK you should remain in self isolation if not covered by approved vaccines.
If coming home from or through France up till 4am on Sunday, you will have to self-isolate and follow the testing rules even if fully immunised.
Remember several places are on a Green Watch list, notably Madeira, these could suddenly change without warning to Amber requiring you to self-isolate. You have been warned. Do not travel unless you can adapt to this.
Generally, this is an encouraging report. Things continue in the right direction. Travel still remains difficult and tests required very expensive. Holidays abroad may not be worth it and prices are exorbitant in some places.
We need to keep going. wear our masks indoors in crowded places, maintain social distances and wipe down surfaces and wash your hands frequently.
Remember to share your views and experiences.
Stay safe everyone.