Published:  10:55 PM, 30 July 2021 Last Update: 11:31 PM, 05 August 2021

Public urged to continue protecting friends and family following restrictions lifting

Public urged to continue protecting friends and family following restrictions lifting

Everyoneacross England is being urged to continue letting fresh air into enclosespaces, take up the offer of twice-weekly free testing, wash their hands andbook both doses of their vaccine, in a major new campaign which has beenlaunched.

As we have moved into step 4 of the roadmap andrestrictions have been cautiously lifted, the campaign begins across radio andprint advertising to encourages the nation to remind the public of theimportance of continuing healthy behaviours to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

This includes a newshort film, narrated by TV doctor and practising GP, Dr Amir Khan. The messageencourages the public to meet outside if they can, let fresh air in wheninside, wear a face covering in crowded places, check-in into venues and testregularly, even if they have been vaccinated.

The film shows howthose positive actions that have become second nature to many people over thepandemic should continue to be implemented into everyday lives. 

New research wasconducted as part of the campaign which reveals nearly nine in 10 (86%) hopethat people will proceed with caution and common sense even with restrictionslifted.

The full list ofactions being invited to continue include:

  • Booking your first or second vaccine if eligible without delay
  • Letting fresh air into enclosed spaces  
  • Regularly twice weekly testing  
  • Taking a PCR test even if you only have mild symptoms 
  • Checking in to venues using the NHS COVID-19 App 
  • Washing hands often and carrying hand sanitiser
  • Wearing face masks when in close proximity to others and distancing not possible, particularly in enclosed spaces such as public transport or small shops 

Health and Social Care Secretary, Sajid Javid, said: “We should all be proud of the effortsof our nation in getting us to a point where we have been able to liftrestrictions in a careful and cautious way as we move one step closer to normallife. This new campaign highlights the importance of continuing to follow thesimple actions we have become accustomed to, such as practicing good hygieneand letting in fresh air wherever possible.

“Our world-leadingvaccine programme has helped us build a strong wall of defence, saving tens ofthousands of lives and preventing millions of infections. By the end ofSeptember, we plan to make full vaccination a condition of entry to nightclubsand other venues where large crowds gather, as well as for quarantine-freetravel from amber list countries. I urge everyone who is eligible to book theirfirst and second jabs without delay.”

 Dr. Amir Khan, practicing GP who features in the new film says:Thanks to thenation’s efforts, we are now able to travel to family and friends across thecountry, and visit the places that we love and have missed – such ascinemas, sports stadiums and restaurants. But whilst we can enjoy the benefitsof restrictions lifting, please remember that COVID-19 is still with us; goodventilation indoors, regular testing and handwashing are just some of theactions that will help stop the spread.

“If you have thevirus, its particles bind to you; these particles are spread whileyou talk, exhale, eat, or perform other normal daily activities – whichmakes continuing to carry out these simple actions so important. Beingvaccinated helps protect you and those around you further, because the vaccinelimits the volume or quantity of viral particles shed by individuals who areinfected with the virus. All these actions are common sense and second natureto us now, I would encourage people to keep doing them and help keep lifemoving.”

Whilst data from Public Health England estimatesthat the vaccination programme in England has prevented over 11 millioninfections and saved almost 37,000 lives, around one in three people whohave COVID-19 have no symptoms and could be spreading the virus withoutknowing. 

Even if someone hasbeen vaccinated, they can still get the virus and pass it on. This is becauseits particles bind to individuals and spread through talking, exhaling,eating, or performing other normal daily activities. The vaccinationlimits the volume or quantity of viral particles shed by individuals who areinfected with the virus helping to stop the spread. 

From theresearch of over 3,000 adults in England, over three quarters saythat they will continue to wear face masks when in crowded spaces, 81% willpractice social distancing where possible and 83% say they will continue towash hands thoroughly and often. 1

Among those who saidthey would continue with at least one of these actions, 74% said they are doingso to help protect others, whilst 63% say it’s respectful to other people whomay feel more nervous about the lifting of restrictions.

Over a third (34%)said that they now have a greater understanding of how germs and viruses spreadand feel better able to try and protect themselves. 

And with cases of other viruses, such asseasonal vomiting bug Norovirus, increasing as restrictions ease, people arebeing urged to take extra precautions to protect themselves and loved ones, byusing these healthy behaviours.

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