Families should isolate for 10 days before mixing with elderly over Xmas, scientists say | UK | News (Reports)

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Earlier this week Boris Johnson unveiled the UK’s coronavirus rules will ease for five days over Christmas, allowing up to three households to form a bubble between December 23-27. While many people have celebrated the news as they will be allowed to mark Christmas with their loved ones, scientists have warned the move could result in a surge in infections and deaths, especially among those most vulnerable to the disease.

Sir David King, the Government’s former chief scientific adviser and chair of the Independent Sage group, has recommended families should isolate for at least 10 days before Christmas if they wish to celebrate with elderly relatives.

He warned there will be a “price to pay” for mixing over the festive break.

Sir David said: “Many children will unwittingly have the disease.

“People will need to be exceptionally careful unless they isolate for between 10-12 days beforehand.

“There will be a price to pay for Christmas.”

Scientists at Independent Sage, a group of experts that provide scientific advice to the Government, also called on people to isolate before joining a Christmas bubble.

University College London’s Prof Susan Michie said: “There is a big risk if younger people have not isolated before contact with older relatives.

“If parents know there are going to be vulnerable people around they should want children to self-isolate first.”

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The Prime Minister said people should consider the risks to themselves and to others.

The bubbles will be fixed, so you will not be able to mix with two households on Christmas Day and two different ones on Boxing Day.

Similarly, households in your Christmas bubble can’t bubble with anyone else.

In England if you have formed a support bubble with another household, that counts as one household, so you can join with two other households in a Christmas bubble.

The Government has stated Christmas bubbles will not be allowed to visit hospitality settings, such as pubs and restaurants.

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