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People who tested positive for Covid-19 and are now immune should get a ‘freedom pass’, expert says

People who have tested positive for Covid-19 and are now immune should be given a ‘freedom pass’ allowing them to go wherever they want, expert says

  • Oxford Prof Sir John Bell, who’s on the Government’s vaccine taskforce, said the pass would allow people to ‘do anything you want for three months, it’s fine’
  • He recommended an ‘enablement strategy’ to encourage people to get tested
  • Prof Bell also said that lateral flow tests, which have a turnaround time of under an hour, could allow people to be checked ‘every other day’

People who have tested positive for coronavirus and spent two weeks in isolation should be given ‘freedom passes’ allowing them to do anything they want, an expert has said.

Professor Sir John Bell, regius professor of medicine at Oxford University and a member of the Government’s vaccine taskforce, said the pass would allow people to ‘do anything you want for three months, it’s fine’.

He told MPs there needs to be an ‘enablement strategy’ in order to encourage more people to get tested.

Prof Bell added: ‘We are living in a world where we need to reopen society back up again and we need a structure to do that and at the moment we don’t have that structure because the whole philosophy has “let’s beat them up with a stick” rather than “let’s give them a carrot”.’ 

A woman uses a swab to test for coronavirus at the mass and rapid testing centre at a Tennis centre in Liverpool on November 6, 2020

A woman uses a swab to test for coronavirus at the mass and rapid testing centre at a Tennis centre in Liverpool on November 6, 2020

Prof Bell also said that lateral flow tests, which have a turnaround time of under an hour, could allow people to be checked ‘every other day’.

The idea of a pass which shows someone has been infected has been raised several times, including by ministers.

NHS Test and Trace chairman Baroness Harding indicated work was being carried out on allowing people to ‘do more things’ if they had either natural or vaccine-acquired immunity. 

That could mean allowing the NHS Covid-19 app to record whether someone has had a vaccine, she told the joint session of the Commons health and social care and science and technology committees.

Professor Sir John Bell, regius professor of medicine at Oxford University and a member of the Government¿s vaccine taskforce (pictured), said the pass would allow people to ¿do anything you want for three months, it¿s fine¿

Professor Sir John Bell, regius professor of medicine at Oxford University and a member of the Government’s vaccine taskforce (pictured), said the pass would allow people to ‘do anything you want for three months, it’s fine’

Prof Bell added: ‘If they test negative you can then have a couple of days freedom because you know that they are not infected.

‘If they are a contact you test them every other day but leave them to go about their business in the real world, so there are advantages to everybody from this.

‘The negatives do better, the positives do better and people will want to be tested because it’s an opportunity to get back to normal life.’

Prof Bell also warned that knowing getting tested could lead to people and their friends being told to self-isolate was a ‘massive disincentive’ to get a test.

He said if no one wanted to be tested, it could lead to the end of mass testing programmes such as the pilot in Liverpool.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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