UK Launches new “island policy” for travellers from Greece As New Positive Cases Rise

As UK witnesses a surge in new Covid-19 cases, it initiated the launch of a new "island policy"

The UK on Monday witnessed a surge of nearly 3,000 new coronavirus cases for the second day running and launched a new “islands policy” that will deem necessary for anyone returning to England from seven Greek islands, including Crete. Mykonos and Santorini, to self-quarantine for 14 days.

As per the Department of Health and Social Care, the UK reported 2,948 daily new coronavirus Monday, a slight lower from the previous day’s number of 2,988, touching the peak since May. Though, an increase in the number of cases can partly be attributed to more testing, it’s steer clear there’s been a rise in the past few weeks owing to relaxation of lockdown restrictions. Some places have seen a re-imposition of lockdown restrictions due to severe local outbreaks in Britain.

British Health Secretary Matt Hancock mentioned that on Monday the situation was “concerning” but refused to accept that the government had no control over the spread of the virus. He said those under 25 accounted for a massive number of new infections and urged them to keep social distancing to protect vulnerable loved ones.

“Don’t infect your grandparents,” he said.

Britain’s Conservative government also asserted on Monday that travelers returning from seven Greek islands will have to isolate themselves for 14 days on their return to England beginning early Wednesday. Lesbos, Serifos, Tinos and Zakynthos have been zeroed down to the UK quarantine list. The other Greek islands and the mainland remain unbound of quarantine requirements.

Britain has Europe’s worst death toll from the virus, recording more than 41,500 deaths within 28 days of testing positive. The actual toll is believed to be a lot more higher as the government tally does not include those who passed away without having been tested.

The spike in UK cases follows surges in Spain and France, both of whom have seen the number of COVID-19 patients being hospitalized rising drastically during the summer.

The changes in travel advice have also slammed the travel industry.

Shapps said the government is “working actively on the practicalities of using testing to release people from quarantine earlier than 14 days.” Many travel companies such as London’s Heathrow Airport have urged a ramp-up in testing but the government claims testing is“no silver bullet.” Jim McMahon of the opposition Labour Party said the government’s response during the coronavirus pandemic has been “nothing short of chaotic” and says that ineptitude has been “acutely felt in aviation.”

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