trial events

The Case for Vaccine Passports Is Strong, Says Michael Gove

Michael Gove says there is a “strong case” for the introduction of vaccine passports “in appropriate locations”, such as at Premier League football matches, arguing that “everything… we can do in order to reduce [the risk of Covid transmission], we should”. He hopes that “some form of certification” will be introduced across all four nations in the U.K. “This,” he believes, “is the right way to go.”

In an interview with the BBC, Gove said that vaccine passports would “make sure we can have greater confidence that big events are not likely to be super-spreader events”. He cited the “spike” in Covid cases following the Euro 2020 games – which experts believe helped squash the latest peak – and said certification would help to “make sure that major activities… are safe” because those who are vaccinated are “less likely to be carriers of the virus”.

This is exactly the sort of “nonsense” that Hugh Osmond, Founder of Punch Taverns, criticised on Sunday when he highlighted that, under Government plans, someone who is fully vaccinated but has Covid will be allowed into a “large venue” but someone who is unvaccinated yet doesn’t have Covid will be barred.

By saying that certification checks will make venue owners more confident that their events are not likely to be “super-spreader events”, Gove also appears to have forgotten the results from 10 recent Government trial events. These identified just 28 positive Covid test results among 58,000 participants *without* the use of vaccine passports.

Despite all this, Gove insists that “the case for certification, overall, is a strong one”.

You can watch the BBC interview here.

Stop Press: Gove says that those who refuse the vaccine are “selfish”, according to Politics For All.

Just 28 Positive Covid Test Results after Trial Events Involving Almost 60,000 People

A Government scientific adviser says that the European Championship finals can go ahead safely following results from 10 trial events which identified only 28 positive Covid test results among 58,000 participants. The Telegraph has the story.

Between mid-April and mid-May, the Government allowed a number of large gatherings to take place, including the World Snooker Championships, the Brits, the F.A. Cup Final, a 5k fun run and a club night in Liverpool. 

Participants had to test negative to be allowed in, and were asked to take a second test after the event to see if they had caught Covid there.

Results published on Friday show that there were no major outbreaks caused by any of the events and just 28 people tested positive in the days that followed. 

Asked whether it was safe to allow 60,000 people to meet for the European Championship final, Professor Tom Rodden, a Chief Scientific Adviser in the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, said: “Certainly, those events can go on safely.”

The Events Research Programme was commissioned by the Prime Minister in February 2021 as part of the roadmap out of lockdown, and was designed to explore how reopening of events can be conducted safely whilst limiting the transmission of the virus.

The report found that prevalence within events was no different to that in the wider community, which they said was “reassuring”…

Experts said it was important that people were allowed back to mass events because it was important for mental health and social cohesion.

Professor Iain Buchan, the Chair of Public Health and Clinical Informatics at the University of Liverpool, said: “This is a really important social phenomenon, and the World Health Organisation’s founding principle was health as a complete state of physical, mental and social wellbeing, not merely the absence of disease or infirmity, or the absence of a virus.

“We have to consider society in the round.”

Oliver Dowden, the Culture Secretary, added: “The findings and learnings will help event organisers plan for large audiences as we move to step four of the roadmap.”

Worth reading in full.