Face masks in schools are more likely as the government prepares for a winter surge.

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Face masks in schools are becoming more common as the government prepares for the winter surge.

In the event of a major outbreak in the community, local public health chiefs have been given more authority to request face coverings in schools.

Local public health officials have been given more authority to demand that adolescent students wear face masks in school, indicating that the government is preparing for a new Covid-19 outbreak this winter.

Regional directors of public health no longer need permission from central government to request face coverings in schools, allowing them to act more quickly in the event of a major outbreak in their local community, thanks to changes to Whitehall’s contingency plans.

Without Whitehall approval, public health officials will be able to request that secondary school students and staff cover up in communal areas such as canteens and assembly halls.

In the event of a large number of local cases necessitating the implementation of an “enhanced response area,” students may be required to wear face masks in class.

The changes are in response to concerns that, despite the roll-out of booster and over-12 vaccinations, UK cases are on the rise again, and that high transmission on the continent could exacerbate the problem.

Boris Johnson is not yet ready to implement Plan B measures, which would include requiring everyone to wear face masks in indoor public places and requiring people to work from home, but he did not rule out new restrictions this winter, including a Christmas lockdown, earlier this week.

The Prime Minister warned that the “storm clouds” of a fourth wave of Covid-19 looming over Europe could hamper the UK’s response to the pandemic, and urged people to get their booster shots.

Downing Street is also concerned about the so-called Child of Delta sublineage, AY4.2, which now accounts for 15% of new cases in the UK and is more infectious than the original Delta strain, though vaccines are still effective.

In recent weeks, the government has been gradually ramping up preparations for a winter surge, but has stopped short of Plan B.

Expanding the booster roll-out to everyone over 40 and recommending a second dose to 16 and 17-year-olds are among the measures – essentially Plan A Plus – as well as a prominent public health messaging campaign are among the measures.

UK news summary from Infosurhoy.

Face masks in schools are becoming more common as the government prepares for the winter surge.

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Covid restrictions: Face masks in schools more likely as Government plans for winter surge

Covid restrictions: Face masks in schools more likely as Government plans for winter surge

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