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UK lifts COVID restrictions; says Omicron wave has peaked

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By SYLVIA HUI

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Has Japan reach its Omicron peak? Seems not.

https://asia.nikkei.com/Spotlight/Coronavirus/Coronavirus-Free-to-read/Coronavirus-latest-Japan-tops-40-000-daily-cases-for-1st-time

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Japan has not yet reached the peak. Fortunately the number of deaths is relatively small.

12 ( +14 / -2 )

A study released yesterday in the Lancet saying that the current vaccines/boosters offer no protection at all against the omicron variant. Zero. Increased T-cells are limiting deaths and serious symptoms. You can search and find it.

-1 ( +14 / -15 )

“We will trust the judgment of the British people and no longer criminalize anyone who chooses not to wear one,” Johnson said.

would've been nice if they hadn't criminalized the British people (and put them under house arrest) previously.... still, governments like to *govern*** [control, influence, or regulate a person, action, or course of events] **rather than trust in the reasonableness of the vast majority of people. maybe I just have more faith in people than BritGov does....

0 ( +10 / -10 )

You’d think wearing face masks was like wearing leg irons. No-one’s suggesting lockdowns or face masks in the street, but you’d think requiring face masks to be worn in public indoor locations would be just a commonsense measure for a while yet.

-7 ( +10 / -17 )

it seems bojo is jumping the gun a bit to try and distract from his party scandals. it's way to early to scrap all the preventitive measures. why is it so bothersome for brits, and americans, to mask up? it' such a small inconvenience.

-3 ( +7 / -10 )

@Peter Neil

You haven't quite got it right. You only get increased T cell by previous infection, or vaccination. Hence, getting vaccinated limits deaths and serious illness. The need for a booster is another questions all together. A booster will give you some additional antibodies, but these disappear pretty quickly and it's debatable whether you even need it considering the T cell immunity given by the original two shots.

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

This is positive news from the UK and a sign of things to come around the world. Unfortunately, Japan is just getting started with Omicron. Likely another 4-5 weeks for us. But for the first time since this pandemic began, I'm beginning to feel optimistic that we may soon be out of this mess.

5 ( +11 / -6 )

Oh finally they see sense

4 ( +12 / -8 )

Good news, but it probably has as much to do with Boris's political survival as anything else.

1 ( +10 / -9 )

Face masks will no longer be mandatory in public places and COVID-19 passports will be dropped for large events as infections level off in most parts of the country, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said Wednesday.

crazy

-9 ( +7 / -16 )

Sanity finally returning or a political move to save his Bacon?

Probably a bit of both!

Move on , open up, and enough with the us and them craziness!

2 ( +11 / -9 )

Fingers crossed that a new variant won't emerge that gives authorities another excuse to clamp down on arrivals. I can see everything ending by the spring, but something tells me "new variant fears" and even a milder strain will cause authorities to pull the "we don't know about the new strain yet" card and this will continue over and over again. Japan will probably be the last developed country to have things return to normal.

8 ( +12 / -4 )

Instead of crossing one's fingers and hoping, do the right things and wear a mask, maintain your distance and get vaccinated. The reason the virus continues to spread and mutate into new variants is all the idiots who stubbornly refuse to acknowledge the science behind stopping a pandemic and act is if they can go on their merry way and someone else will magically make the pandemic go away. Then they whine and cry when it doesn't. Sorry but everyone has to pull their weight and make some sacrifices. It gets a little tiring to hear the same crybabies whine about the pandemic but still refusing to wear a mask, social distance or get vaccinated. Everyone has to do their part. It's called exercising adult restraint. Stop acting like children. Why should responsible people like me be made to suffer endlessly because of a stupid minority that won't do the right thing? Patience with the fools is wearing thin !

-3 ( +9 / -12 )

No more masks? Is he serious? Apparently Johnson himself only masks up to hide his shame when he mumbles his porkies.

-1 ( +9 / -10 )

UK studied the epidemic well. One of the moving forward country in the world.

0 ( +7 / -7 )

ahead of the curve

0 ( +5 / -5 )

The difference between here and the impressions I get from back home is that there, people there really want to get back to normal. Here I fear we live in a permanently masked society. Those who think this is no big deal don't have a good grasp of the psychological effects of this, particularly on the young.

9 ( +12 / -3 )

Desert TortoiseToday  08:45 am JST

Instead of crossing one's fingers and hoping, do the right things and wear a mask, maintain your distance and get vaccinated. The reason the virus continues to spread and mutate into new variants is all the idiots who stubbornly refuse to acknowledge the science behind stopping a pandemic and act is if they can go on their merry way and someone else will

-5 ( +6 / -11 )

"Desert TortoiseToday  08:45 am JST

Instead of crossing one's fingers and hoping, do the right things and wear a mask, maintain your distance and get vaccinated. The reason the virus continues to spread and mutate into new variants is all the idiots who stubbornly refuse to acknowledge the science behind stopping a pandemic and act is if they can go on their merry way and someone else will magically make the pandemic go away"

You mean like how Omicron came from Sth Africa where they have only about 20% of the population vaccinated because the west is now on it's 4th shot and won't share any???.....

-2 ( +7 / -9 )

@Fuzzy

You haven't quite got it right. You only get increased T cell by previous infection, or vaccination. 

All of the subjects had been infected.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

A study released yesterday in the Lancet saying that the current vaccines/boosters offer no protection at all against the omicron variant

That is not the conclusion of the study, first because it consisted on a grand total of 7 people, second because they were all at high risk of infection (being medical personnel) third because they were vaccinated at latest at the beginning of October (two months before the exposure) and fourth because none required hospitalization.

The patients all got T cell activation primarily by vaccination which protected them from serious COVID, this means at much that the protection is not perfect, but nowhere they say "no protection at all"

In fact they say the oppostie

The mild to moderate course of illness suggests that full vaccination followed by a booster dose still provides good protection against severe disease caused by omicron.

Encouragingly, early data from South Africa suggest maintained if reduced effectiveness of the BNT162b2 vaccine against hospital admission.

-1 ( +9 / -10 )

Japan may learn from others.

There is no need for any kind of so called quasi emergencies here as peak of omicron will come in wekk or two or so than will go as same path as UK right now...

Face masks will no longer be mandatory in public places and COVID-19 passports will be dropped for large events as infections level off in most parts of the country-finally when common sense prevails.

0 ( +7 / -7 )

How is it that there were no mass deaths in SA?

Majority are unvaccinated and that wave is over.

Japan with its high vaccination rate is still clutching at straws with its quasi measures and strict border controls as well as a 10 day quarantine.

Behind the curve as usual and I’ll be out socializing today-quasi measures or not!

1 ( +7 / -6 )

The Big Pharma vaccines don't work so everyone is going to get it at some point.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

How is it that there were no mass deaths in SA?

Experts from South Africa have calculated 10,000 excess deaths caused by Omicron, these are quite important and why they were asking for more vaccine to be available for them.

The Big Pharma vaccines don't work so everyone is going to get it at some point.

Precisely because they work is why the risk of infection decreases and more importantly the risk of complications, hospitalizations and deaths is much lower.

2 ( +8 / -6 )

A study released yesterday in the Lancet saying that the current vaccines/boosters offer no protection at all against the omicron variant

The Pfizer CEO said 2 shots don't offer any protection. 3 shots offer "reasonable" protection against hospitalization and death but less (protection) against infection.

"Reasonable" protection is so vague it's very revealing in itself.

If the Pfizer CEO hadn't said it, the Lancet wouldn't have dared say it.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

At last we are returning to normality - and good job too! The truth is that it would have been impossible for the government to have maintained the restrictions, so they bowed gracefully to the inevitable. Conservative MPs were rebelling in ever greater numbers against the restrictions, and many people were just ignoring them, with enforcement almost zero. We want to be free to decide for ourselves how we lead our lives!

1 ( +4 / -3 )

This just shows that it's always been political, media-driven fear and hysteria, never about real health. Masks, vaxxes, travel restrictions, it's a load of you-know-what. Start living again people, life's too short for depressing charades like this.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

A quick glance of coronavirus statistics for the UK shows 152,872 total deaths since the beginning of the pandemic. 

A freedom of information request to the UK government inquiring about the number of deaths solely attributed to Coronavirus with no underlying causes puts the number at 9400 for 2020 and 7971 for 2021 for a total of 17371. 

https://www.ons.gov.uk/aboutus/transparencyandgovernance/freedomofinformationfoi/covid19alonewithnounderlininghealthissuesnovemeber2019todecember2021

This information was available from Jan 18, 2022 and is likely why Johnson felt it untenable to proceed with further restrictions. If I know, then he knows. 

Robert Sternberg, one of my favourite researchers on intelligence, divides "book smarts" with "street smarts" and notes that there seems to be an inverse relationship between the two. Tacit knowledge is the difference between getting hustled or not. And no one learns that in school because that's part of the hustle.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

The Pfizer CEO said 2 shots don't offer any protection. 3 shots offer "reasonable" protection against hospitalization and death but less (protection) against infection.

Any source? Because the last article presented here had completely different conclusions from what the comment included. A very important point is that giving protection means there is a detectable difference between vaccinated and unvaccinated people with hospitalizations, complications and deaths being prevented. What do you suggest to reach the same goal?

This just shows that it's always been political, media-driven fear and hysteria, never about real health.

That is not what this means, specially because the results of lifting the restrictions (and more importantly the results of people not acting according to the restrictions) are still to be seen, what data do you have to contradict the many sources that demonstrate social distancing, masks, vaccines, etc. have a very positive effect in preventing deaths?

2 ( +9 / -7 )

Experts from South Africa have calculated 10,000 excess deaths caused by Omicron, these are quite important and why they were asking for more vaccine to be available for them.

Your evidence for this is....?

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

whenever a number (10,000) is that round, its not data, its conjecture.

Or a "guess" to support a narrative.

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Experts from South Africa have calculated 10,000 excess deaths caused by Omicron, these are quite important and why they were asking for more vaccine to be available for them.

Any source? Looking at the John Hopkins site, 10,000 seems quite high...

The Pfizer CEO said 2 shots don't offer any protection. 3 shots offer "reasonable" protection against hospitalization and death but less (protection) against infection.

Any source?

Try this, you can hear the CEO himself saying it:

https://twitter.com/i/status/1480668523944820738

"We know that two doses of the vaccine offer very limited protection, if any. Three doses, with a booster, offers reasonable protection against hospitalization and death... and less protection against infection"

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Any source? Looking at the John Hopkins site, 10,000 seems quite high

Your evidence for this is....?

https://www.ft.com/content/b0cd9239-f2df-4afc-912f-b3f87fc676ff

(between other sources that can be found in seconds of googling)

These are the same professionals that you have included in your own comments, actively recommending vaccines to avoid the dangerous risks of Omicron infection

whenever a number (10,000) is that round, its not data, its conjecture.

That is not what conjecture means, you are looking for expressions like "rounding up" and you are free to contradict the South African experts that choose this to express the importance of the variant.

Try this, you can hear the CEO himself saying it:

So he never said "any protection" as the original comment, in this case the source was very important.

And as said, offering protection with a booster means there is something to be protected from, completely contradicting the "no risk from omicron" argument. Omicron is a health risk, and a booster confers protection against it (for the people that require it), so it is an advantage. With what is this advantage being replaced instead of boosting?

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

Here I fear we live in a permanently masked society.

Masks have now become a "show respect for the frail and elderly or a complete stranger that might catch something from you" custom in Japan. You can see people wearing masks in their cars, while they are jogging with no one around, and I don't expect the behavior to go away for years. In fact, I think people believe that the mask will protect them from the next coronavirus "just in case" it circulates undetected.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

The number of excess deaths is a measure of mortality against an historical average. The deaths are not necessarily due to Omicron. For example, according to the South African Medical Research Council, the excess deaths in the week to Dec. 26 fell to 3,016 from 3,087 the week earlier, while the official deaths due to Covid-19 declined to 425 from 428; i.e., the excess deaths are over 7X higher than the official Covid-19 deaths, which in turn likely include those who died with Covid.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

And just like that…

England goes to Plan C: Virus Gonna Virus.

Already playing in Florida and most red states. Coming soon to Israel, Europe, and a blue city near you.

Expect great ratings,

(So why did we have to endure these 2 years of absurd theater?)

3 ( +4 / -1 )

The deaths are not necessarily due to Omicron

That is what sources you have repeatedly claimed are trust worthy are saying are the deaths caused by Omicron to the best of their knowledge. The same professionals that consider vaccination a very necessary measure to prevent them.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Putting his political career above public health and safety.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Sakurasuki...

Has Japan reach its Omicron peak? Seems not.

Japan's Omicron peak is thought to occur in early March, possibly a week earlier or later.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

A reasonable summary is that vaccination boosters reduce severe symptoms and death from omicron, but there is little that can be done to stop the spread. Arbitrary 6’ distancing and cloth masks or (no masks as much of the US) is not going to affect the spread.

The question is, will burning through the population quickly be better than the social and economic costs theater of “stopping” the spread?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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