PUBS could ask punters to show a blood test in order to prove they are Covid immune for a pint, it has been reported.
Ministers are said to be considering Covid ‘status checks’ as a way of helping bars and other big venues to scrap social distancing rules.
🦠 Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news & updates…
People could be required to take an antibody test to prove they have had the bug – which involves taking a sample of their blood for analysis, The Times reports.
Scientists believe that people who have recovered from Covid acquire natural immunity for up to at least five months.
And as well as past infection, punters could show proof of a jab or a recent negative test to give them their ‘freedom pass’.
Boris Johnson said yesterday: “I do think there is going to be a role for certification. There are three basic components.
“There’s the vaccine, there’s your immunity you might have after you’d had Covid and there’s testing — three things that could work together.”
The NHS app could be converted to become a digital Covid certificate, allowing people to use their phone to prove they meet one of those criteria.
England’s deputy chief medical officer, Jonathan Van-Tam, is understood to support the idea of using antibody tests as part of a certification scheme.
But the Prime Minister has acknowledged a number of moral issues around the idea.
Mr Johnson said yesterday: “There are lots of difficult issues, because there are some people who – for medical reasons – can’t get a vaccination, pregnant women can’t get a vaccination at the moment, you’ve got to be careful about how you do this.
“You might only be able to implement a thorough-going vaccination passport scheme even if you wanted such a thing in the context of when absolutely everybody had been offered a vaccine.”
Publicans, MPs and drinkers have all already rallied against the idea that customers should prove their health credentials at boozers.
Landlords insisted: “The only ID we need is proof of age.”
And trade bodies said making entry conditional on jabs was “simply unworkable” and would cause conflict between staff and customers.
Tory lockdown sceptic Steve Baker urged the Government not to “fall into this ghastly trap”.
He said we should not “tolerate businesses turning away customers who have shown an unfortunate hesitancy to take up the offer of a vaccine”.
BLEW THE LOTT
Youngest Lotto winner living on benefits after coke crash and blowing £1.8m
WOKEING FROM HOME
Prince Harry to be confined to sprawling US mansion as he starts new job
Covid rules you can be fined for breaking – from £800 for a party to £5k for hol
Meghan’s half-sister says Harry is in ‘no position’ to ‘fight misinformation’
Biden totally forgets what he’s talking about in excruciating press conference
PM wins vote to extend Covid laws to September but lockdown roadmap on track
And Labour’s Ed Miliband said: “If this was really a public health measure, you wouldn’t be saying, ‘well, it’s going to be at the landlord’s discretion’.”
Last night, the British Beer and Pub Association insisted the requirement would not be “appropriate or necessary”.
Greg Grundy, landlord of The Egremont in Worthing, West Sussex, also opposed the move, saying: “Unless government gets support for pubs right, then establishments that survived the wars will close.”