Boris Johnson to give Downing Street coronavirus press conference at 5pm today



Boris Johnson is set to give a Downing Street coronavirus press conference today at 5pm.

The Prime Minister will talk about the vaccine programme after the number of first doses in the UK nudged over 2million in the last week.

But he is set to warn Brits it is too early to relax – as speculation mounts that England’s lockdown will stretch into the summer.

Ministers yesterday refused to say schools will fully reopen before Easter, warned it was too early to book a summer holiday, and admitted they could not say when restrictions will end.

Today Environment Secretary George Eustice claimed life can return “closer to normal” in “late Spring, early Summer”.

But he also said ministers were considering further crackdowns – including closing the borders entirely to non-Brits to stop future vaccine-resistant variants of Covid getting into the UK.

Another 1,290 UK deaths were reported yesterday alone, bringing the tragic total to 94,580.

A Downing Street official told Playbook the Prime Minister will insist “there’s still a way to go” and urge Brits not to break the rules.

“This has been a very bleak week and we need everybody to keep sticking to the rules and helping to protect hospitals, which are under the most tremendous pressure,” the official said.

“We aren’t yet seeing the sharp fall in infections that we had last April and May and we need to keep going.”

Official figures last night show UK officials reported giving 2,054,996 first doses of a Covid vaccine in the seven days to January 20.

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However, Boris Johnson has still not quite met the official wording of his target – which is to give 2million jabs a week in England.

In England, 1,809,359 first doses and 21,192 second doses were given in the same seven-day period, making 1,830,551 doses in total.

Despite the pace of the vaccine programme, some areas are far ahead of others due to what ministers call a “lumpy” supply to GP surgeries.

Some GP practices have given first jabs to most of their over-80 patients, meaning they can move on to over-75s.

But other areas of the country are still waiting for sufficient doses of the jab.

While North East England & Yorkshire has given first doses to 67% of its over-80s, London has given first doses to only 50%.





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