Hand-delivered Christmas cards could spread coronavirus, Mark Drakeford warns

FESTIVE Brits must not hand deliver Christmas cards this year in case they spread killer Covid, the leader of Wales said today.

Mark Drakeford urged the public not to go door-to-door spreading Christmas cheer because of the deadly pandemic.

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The gloomy warning came after the leaders of all four UK nations pledged to work together to come up with a plan to save Christmas.

He said this lunchtime: “I probably will deliver fewer cards by hand this year because the more we get about, the more we meet people, the more the risks are.”

Nervous Brits are still waiting to hear if they will be allowed to travel to different parts of the UK to enjoy a family Christmas.

Downing Street hopes England’s current lockdown will help dampen down Covid rates enough to salvage December 25.

Wales came out of lockdown today, meaning it's shops and pubs have reopened once again after 17 days closed.

Children can return to school after an extended break, and people are allowed to travel inside the country again.

And in a major boost for the nation – it emerged today that Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine can prevent more than 90 per cent of people from getting coronavirus.

Hailing the good news, Mr Drakeford said: “It is good news, of course, if any of the vaccines in trial are making progress.

“I think you’d always want to read carefully what a particular competitor in this field says on their own behalf and I’m not going to be tempted to suggest that this somehow means there is a magic bullet on the horizon and coronavirus is about to disappear out of our lives.

“We will want to see the nature of any vaccine, how much protection it offers people for how long.

“But of course any vaccine that is emerging strongly from trials is to be welcomed because it will offer some new possibilities in the future.”

Asked if it could bring normality by the spring, Professor John Bell of Oxford University said: "Yes, yes yes. I'm probably the first guy to say that but I will say that with some confidence."

A vaccine and mass testing are both seen as key ways for the nation to be able to beat coronavirus in the long-term.

Downing Street welcomed the news but said the nation must await the safety tests first.

 

The PM's spokesperson said this lunchtime: "The results are promising.

"While we are optimistic of a breakthrough, we must remember there are no guarantees.

"We will know whether the vaccine is both safe and effective when the safety data has been published. Only then can authorities consider making it available to the public.

"In the meanwhile the NHS stands ready to begin a vaccine programme for those most at risk once a vaccine is available, before being rolled out more widely."

The UK has secured 40million doses of the Pfizer vaccine candidate – and 10million will be rolled out by the end of the year.


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