‘Freedom passports’ could let non-infected Brits live ‘pre-Covid lives’, says PM
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The UK is set to pilot a huge mass testing programme in Salford that will see non infectious people given "Freedom Passports" to let them live their lives in a much less socially-distanced way.
Previous hopes for more normal lives had been pinned on a working vaccine being widely available, but speaking from Downing Street on Wednesday, the Prime Minister announced the country was set to take another approach.
The ambitious scheme would see non-Covid infected Brits be allowed to live much less restricted lives, while those who test positive will still be expected to quarantine and self isolate.
But Boris Johnson did admit that the technology around testing would need to be advanced significantly to make such a plan workable immediately, expressing desires for a quick Covid-19 test similar to a pregnancy test.
Asked if Christmas was now now effectively cancelled, Mr Johnson said: "Whether we are going to get things back to normal at all by Christmas, I'm still hopeful, as I've said before, that in many ways we could be able to get some aspects of our lives back to normal by Christmas.
"I talked just now about how you could do that. Through that Moonshot of daily testing – everybody gets a pregnancy-style test, a rapid turn-around test in the morning, 15 minutes later you know whether you are infectious of not.
"You may not know whether you are infected or not, but you know whether you are infectious, or not, and that gives you a kind of passport, a freedom to mingle with everybody else who is similarly not infectious in a way that is currently impossible."
He added: "We are aiming for that. We are driving for that. As I have said…we cannot be 100% sure that we can deliver that in its entirety."
- Boris Johnson
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