Sunak told to fork out extra cash for Britons forced to isolate ‘No incentive to shield!’

Covid passports: Expert says govt must provide financial support

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Oksana Pyzik, a Covid expert at University College London, told BBC Radio 5 live Chancellor Rishi Sunak needs to give out extra cash to help people isolate. She insisted there was currently “no incentive” for the self-employed to isolate with the virus as they do not get sick pay so will lose money. Ms Pyzik went on to highlight how despite repeated calls for help nothing has been done to “plug up any holes” in this area and called for more action from Rishi.

The bug boffin said: “We already know that there really isn’t an incentive for people to isolate or seek testing if they are self-employed or if they don’t get sick pay.

“So in order to potentially plug up any holes of defence against this virus the government really does need to step up and ensure that there is financial support for people.

“Independent SAGE and other groups have been calling for this throughout the entire pandemic.”

She added how she was “surprised” to not see any action in this area to help those who need it most and called for the government to do more.

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Ms Pyzik went on to explain how other countries have used financial incentives to help people isolate in order keep the virus at bay, and the U.K. should do the same.

She said: “We see from other countries that when we do have these incentives in place it can really work.

But she was asked how such an incentive can be brought in quickly as there are a number of obstacles to consider.

The Covid expert said: “I don’t think it’s just about the data privacy issues I think there are some other practicalities associated with it.”

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The news comes as all adults in England will be able to get free twice-a-week home Covid tests as Boris Johnson begins a mass testing initiative to get Brits back to normal.

Shadow Health Secretary Jonathan Ashworth said the new testing must be “backed up by decent financial support so sick people can isolate.”

He said: “People who are sick with Covid are still forced to choose between self-isolation or feeding their families.

“Lack of adequate sick pay and support remains a dangerous hole in our defences against this horrific virus.”

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Monday will also see the results published from an interim study into vaccine passports by Michael Gove.

Mr Gove’s study looks into the feasibility of vaccine certificates.

The Prime Minister will hold a press conference from Downing Street at 5pm on Monday where he will lay out how a vaccine passport system will work.

It is understood those who have been vaccinated will be able to update details on the NHS Covid app allowing venues to see proof visitors have been jabbed.

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