Covid: Passes now needed in England and eligible over-18s can book a boosteron December 15, 2021 at 7:39 am

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Five things you need to know about the coronavirus pandemic this Wednesday morning.

Here are five things you need to know about the coronavirus pandemic this Wednesday morning. We’ll have another update for you this evening.

Covid passes are now needed to get into nightclubs, big sports matches and other large events in England. Put forward by the government to help control the spread of the Omicron variant, their approval by MPs in the Commons came at the expense of the biggest rebellion since Boris Johnson became prime minister. When the votes were announced, 99 Tory MPs went against the plans. Our political correspondent Nick Eardley explains why this revolt matters. Nonetheless Covid passes got through because of Labour’s support. This means you will now need proof of double-vaccination, or a recent negative test, to enter certain venues.

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In line with the government’s aim to offer all adults booster jabs before the end of the year, those aged 18 and over can now book their third dose of the Covid vaccine. People are eligible for a booster three months after a second jab, but they can book after two months.

People are seen in a queue for their booster dose while standing at social distance outside the NHS vaccination centre at Westfield Stratford

Image source, Getty Images

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More than 800,000 people in the US have died from coronavirus. It’s the highest recorded national death toll from the global pandemic and most of the fatalities are among the unvaccinated and the elderly. “The waves of illness that we’re seeing will continue until the population-level immunity is high enough to prevent them.” says Dr Keri Althoff, an epidemiologist at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Read more here.

A man in a mask walks among flags representing those that died from Covid

Image source, Getty Images

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Shaun Bailey, the former Conservative mayoral candidate for London, has quit his role as chairman of a police and crime committee for breaching Covid rules last December. Mr Bailey stood down after it emerged he went to a Christmas party which his team had organised at a time when household mixing was banned in London. He’s not yet responded with a comment but remains a member of the committee and the London Assembly.

Shaun Bailey, Conservative Party candidate for the London mayoral election,

Image source, Getty Images

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Lucy Hitchcock launched her business selling insulated wine bottles and tumblers for outdoor drinking and picnics during lockdown but soon started wondering whether she’d made a mistake. She decided to promote her products on social media, a video went viral and her business, Partner in Wine, took off. Watch to find out more.

Government statistics show 146,627 people have now died, with 150 deaths reported in the latest 24-hour period. In total, 10,932,545 people have tested positive, up 59,610 in the latest 24-hour period. Latest figures show 7,672 people in hospital. In total, 51,298,838 people have received their first vaccination

Omicron is expected become the dominant variant in the UK and cause a surge in infections. But should more be done to suppress it? Our health correspondent Nick Triggle has taken a look.

You can find more information, advice and guides on our coronavirus page.

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