What time is Boris Johnson's winter Covid announcement today and what could he say?

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson is set to announce the government’s winter Covid plans today, detailing when booster jab programmes will begin and whether vaccine passports will get the green light

Tuesday, 14th September 2021, 11:41 am
Updated Tuesday, 14th September 2021, 11:52 am

Boris Johnson is to set out the UK’s winter Covid plans as commentators and government officials speculate on whether the country could see a ‘firebreak’ October lockdown imposed if cases spike next month.

The Prime Minister remains determined to avoid another lockdown, with Downing Street insisting it will only be considered as a "last resort".

The Prime Minister is set to make an official Covid-19 announcement to the nation today (Tuesday 14 September).

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What time is Boris Johnson's announcement today and what could he say? (Image credit: PA/Getty Images)

This will detail winter plans and measures to tackle recent spikes in coronavirus cases and minimise chances of the NHS becoming overwhelmed by growing demand for services.

But what time will Mr Johnson make his announcement and what will he say?

Here’s what you need to know.

When is Boris Johnson speaking today?

Boris Johnson is set to announce the UK Government’s winter coronavirus plan for 2021 on Tuesday September 14 at an expected time of 4pm.

However, the sudden death of the Prime Minister’s mother, Charlotte Johnson Wahl, may also see an alternative minister lead the national briefing.

This will come after a morning briefing by UK Vaccine Minister Nadhim Zahawi to the House of Commons about plans to vaccinate 12 to 15-year-olds in England.

The Government announced on Monday that the Pfizer/ BioNTech vaccine would be offered to 12 to 15-year olds in England, following advice from the chief medical officers of the four devolved nations of the UK.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) had previously advised against the step, saying the medical benefits were only marginal.

However, in their advice the medical officers stressed the impact of missed schooling due to Covid on children's education and mental wellbeing.

In his Commons statement this morning, the Vaccines Minister Nadhim Zahawi said parental consent would be sought before the vaccine was administered.

In the "rare event" that a parent declined but the child wanted the jab anyway, there would be a procedure to enable them to receive it if they were deemed "competent".

Secretary of State for Health and Social Care Sajid Javid will also make a statement in Parliament later today.

This will set out the Government’s winter Covid measures including vaccine passport plans, its booster jab programme and possible further revocation of measures established last year under the Coronavirus Act.

What will Boris Johnson say at today’s Covid announcement?

If he leads the UK Government’s winter Covid announcement today (14 September), Mr Johnson is expected to focus on booster vaccination programme plans, vaccinations for 12 to 15-year-olds and the future of vaccine passports in England.

Monday saw UK Health Secretary Sajid Javid claim that Downing Street’s plans for vaccine passports had been scrapped, but Scottish Government plans for mandatory vaccine certification were approved by Holyrood last week.

Officials argue deaths and hospital admissions have remained relatively stable over the past month as evidence suggests the vaccines have been highly effective in preventing serious illness.

Ahead of the announcement, Mr Johnson said: "The pandemic is far from over, but thanks to our phenomenal vaccine programme, new treatments and testing we are able to live with the virus without significant restrictions on our freedoms.

"I will set out a clear plan for the autumn and winter, when the virus has a natural advantage, to protect the gains we have made."

How can I watch Boris Johnson’s announcement?

The Prime Minister’s winter Covid announcement will be broadcast on BBC News and Sky News at around 4pm.

This will be available to watch live online via BBC iPlayer or on Sky News’ YouTube channel.

Additional reporting by PA Whitehall Editor, Gavin Cordon