Here are five things you need to know about the coronavirus pandemic this Thursday morning. We’ll have another update for you this evening.
1. Annual jabs for years to come, predicts Pfizer boss
Annual Covid vaccinations are likely to be needed for many years to come, according to Pfizer chief executive Albert Bourla. He thinks this is needed to maintain a “very high level of protection” and says the jabs had helped save millions of lives during the pandemic. He’s given an exclusive interview to the BBC a year since the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine was approved in the UK. The UK has since signed contracts to buy 114 million additional Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna doses for 2022 and 2023. Follow our live page for the latest updates.
2. Trigger found for rare AZ vaccine blood clots
What led to blood clots for a very small number of people after receiving the Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid vaccine has been somewhat of a mystery but now scientists believe they have found the “trigger”. A protein in the blood is attracted to a key component of the vaccine, which researchers from Cardiff and the US think kicks off a chain reaction involving the immune system. Find out more here.
3. Will Scotland hit its January booster jabs target?
Ramping up the vaccine roll out has formed a key part of trying to tackle the Omicron variant of coronavirus in the UK. Every eligible adult in Scotland will be offered a booster by the end of January but how achievable is that target? At first glance, it’s an easy question to answer. Here’s what we’ve found.
4. Variant fears prompt smaller festive parties
What’s the plan for your office Christmas party? Instead of big bashes, some larger businesses are holding smaller events within departments, due to the concerns around the Omicron Covid variant. Other firms such as NatWest, Aviva and Deloitte say staff attendance is personal choice. Here’s the full story.
5. Kissing under the mistletoe
If you’ve wanted to have a kiss under the mistletoe this Christmas, you might want to think twice about after a government minister was asked about socialising over the next few weeks. To reduce the spread of coronavirus “I don’t think there should be much snogging under the mistletoe”, says Therese Coffey. But the Work and Pensions Secretary insists people should enjoy the festive period, adding the government was working hard to make this happen.
And there’s more…
Is Omicron more harmful than other coronavirus variants? We’ve looked into it and answered other questions you’ve been asking. Here they are.
You can find more information, advice and guides on our coronavirus page.
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