Countries That Have Dropped All Mandates, Mask Use & VPass (or Are Just About To)
By Eyes Open New Zealand
Countries that have dropped all mandates, mask use & VPass (or are just about to):
15. El Salvador
All of Scotland’s Omicron restrictions to end on Monday, says Nicola Sturgeon
Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.
Nicola Sturgeon has announced all of Scotland’s coronavirus restrictions introduced in response to the Omicron wave will be brought to an end next Monday.
In the Scottish Parliament, the First Minister said nightclub closures and the requirement for table service in hospitality will come to an end. Attendance limits on indoor events will also be lifted.
Ms Sturgeon said: “From Monday we will also lift the guidance asking people to stick to a three-household limit on indoor gatherings.
“However, it is important to stress this point: notwithstanding the improving situation, the level of Covid infection circulating in the community is still high. So to minimise the risk of us getting the virus it would be sensible for all of us to remain cautious in our social interactions at this stage.”
She continued: “We will continue to ask people to work from home whenever possible at this stage – and for employers to facilitate this.
“However, we will engage with business now about a return to a more hybrid approach from the start of February.”
Nicola Sturgeon has said baseline coronavirus measures which were in place before the Omicron wave will remain.
She told MSPs: “That means face coverings must still be worn in public indoor settings and on public transport.”
The First Minister also announced the Scottish Government would not be expanding its vaccine certification scheme into new venues.
Speaking about the the cabinet’s discussions on the topic, she said: “This was undoubtedly the most difficult decision we faced this morning and, yet again, the judgment we have arrived at was finely balanced.”
Ms Sturgeon said: “Our conclusion today, given the improving situation, is that extending certification would not be proportionate at this stage.”
Scotland is now on the “downward slope” of infections from the Omicron wave of coronavirus, Ms Sturgeon said.
Speaking in the Scottish Parliament, she set out statistics showing a “significant fall” in new cases, although the NHS remained under “acute pressure”.
She said: “Taking all of this into account, and triangulating the various sources of data, allows us to say with some confidence that the rise in cases driven by Omicron peaked in the first week of January and that we are now on the downward slope of this wave of cases.”
Ms Sturgeon has urged Scots who have not yet had their vaccine booster jab to come forward.
She told MSPs: “There are still more than 600,000 people over the age of 18 who are eligible for a booster, but haven’t yet had it. And there are hundreds of thousands more who have not yet had a first or second dose.
“So I would encourage anyone who falls into one of these categories to make an appointment as soon as possible, or go to a drop-in clinic.”
The First Minister said despite the renewed optimism the NHS remained under “significant pressure”.
“Despite what people may be hearing from media commentary, we have not yet moved from the epidemic to the endemic phase of Covid, although I hope that transition is underway. However, we are – I hope – once again entering a calmer phase of the epidemic.”
She said the Scottish Government continued to work on its new strategic framework for the future approach to coronavirus.