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Photograph: Sandor Szmutko / Shutterstock.com

Yesterday’s Omicron announcement – what it means for London (and Christmas)

Prime Minister Boris Johnson revealed new guidance about booster jabs as Omicron makes up the majority of Covid cases in London

Chris Waywell
Written by
Chris Waywell
&
Alice Saville
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Prime Minister Boris Johnson this evening (5pm) announced further government guidance around Covid vaccinations in light of the massive spike in cases of the Omicron variant. 

Here are the top lines from today’s announcement:

  • The majority of cases in London are set to be Omicron
  • If you are 18 and above, you can use the national booking service to get jabbed now
  • More than 650,000 boosters were delivered yesterday
  • Two jabs are ‘not enough’ but booster jabs are proving highly effective
  • There were nearly 80,000 new UK cases of Covid yesterday
  • Delta remains flat, but the Omicron variant is growing extremely fast
  • He asked the public to visit www.NHSvolunteerresponders.or.uk if you want to volunteer to deliver jabs
  • 45 percent of UK adults are now boosted
  • There will no longer be the 15-minute post-vaccine waiting time
  • From next week, 12- to 15-year-olds can now book jabs too
  • Wear face masks indoors
  • Get tested before indoor events
  • There are, as yet, no further restrictions for London 

The Omicron variant currently makes up a whopping 50 percent of new Covid cases in London, and that figure’s only set to rise. According to official figures, cases are set to double every two days in the hardest-hit London boroughs of Hackney, Greenwich, the City of London and Barking & Dagenham. But for now, there’s no sign of the much-discussed Plan C, which could see further restrictions being introduced. Instead, Boris is pinning all his hopes on an accelerated roll-out of the vaccination programme, and whatever you think of his leadership, getting your booster is the best way to keep yourself safe.

Get yours by either booking online (channel your inner night owl by logging on in the wee hours to avoid hefty queues) or by finding a walk-in clinic near you using the NHS website. Wait times are long, so bring a book, a thermos or a willingness to make some offbeat (and socially distanced) new friendships. 

Here are some more ideas on how to have fun outside in London right now.

These are the most festive streets in London this Christmas.

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