Winter Covid Response

Thank you for contacting me about the Government’s COVID-19 response.

I assure you that Government Ministers are watching this data vigilantly as we enter the winter when all respiratory viruses increase.

It is likely that the coming months will represent a significant challenge to the NHS as coronaviruses, influenza and other respiratory diseases become more prevalent. The Government devised a ‘Plan B’ within its Autumn and Winter Response and, given the current data, the Health Secretary believes it is not necessary to enter this provision.

The current data shows that the vaccination rollout has been a success with 90 per cent of the population with antibodies and the rise in cases is almost entirely among teenagers.

The best way for us to uphold the progress made earlier this year is to continue taking up vaccines, both for Covid-19 and influenza.  Third jabs will be available on the NHS for people most at

risk from COVID-19 who have had a 2nd dose of a vaccine at least 6 months ago. This includes all over-50s and those with certain underlying health conditions. I encourage everyone to take this booster when approached by the NHS to do so.

I truly believe that people have the capacity to make their own sensible decisions about how best to preserve their health and the health of others from the range of health risks we face.

Thank you again for taking the time to write to me about this important issue.