Editor:  Being sensible is the only way we’ll get though this

I know lots of people who are suffering with Covid at the minute. Fortunately most of them aren’t very poorly but they aren’t at work and that is an enormous problem.

By Nancy Fielder
Wednesday, 5th January 2022, 6:36 am
Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks during a virtual press conference to update the nation on the status of the Covid-19 pandemic, in the Downing Street briefing room in central London on January 4, 2022. - British hospitals have switched to a "war footing" due to staff shortages caused by a wave of Omicron infections, the government said Tuesday, as the country's daily Covid caseload breached 200,000 for the first time. (Photo by Jack Hill / POOL / AFP) (Photo by JACK HILL/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

They are doctors and nurses, teachers and shop workers – in fact they are in just about all jobs going, as you’ll read in today’s paper.

Prime minister Boris Johnson announced last night he plans to stick with Covid ‘Plan B’ in England for now, though he refused to rule out further restrictions.

So it is back to us to be sensible because that is the only way we will get through this … again.

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My children are back at school today, but they are very unlikely to get through the term without having to learn from home because teachers or other children are poorly.

A friend’s mother had a bad fall yesterday and, in agonising pain, she had to wait for more than eight hours until an ambulance appeared. That’s because paramedics aren’t immune, our hospital beds are full of people who can’t be moved because our social care system is broken and everybody suffers. There is no age restriction. This isn’t about the elderly – absolutely anybody could need to dial 999 for healthcare and only then will you personally see the massive implications of underfunding made worse by this wretched pandemic.

A further 218,724 lab-confirmed Covid-19 cases were recorded in England and Scotland as of 9am yesterday – the first time that daily figure has been over 200,000.

But despite pressure growing on hospitals as admissions continue to rise, the government has no plans for tighter restrictions.

The Government has identified 100,000 critical workers who will be offered daily lateral flow tests to help keep essential services open.

Mr Johnson announced that staff working in areas such as food processing, transport and the Border Force would be sent test kits for every working day from January 10.

“As the NHS moves to a war footing I will be recommending to Cabinet tomorrow we continue with Plan B because the public have responded and changed their behaviour buying valuable time to get boosters in arms,” he added.

And so we wait to see. Please be careful and keep yourself safe.