Chief medical officer, Chris Whitty, has urged families to stick to COVID Christmas rules this year.
He has warned people against hugging or kissing their grandparents this Christmas.
The leading epidemiologist spoke at Downing Street Conference, and urged Brits to be extra careful this festive season.
He suggested that hugging or kissing the elderly could result in spreading COVID-19 – with potentially fatal results.
Mr Whitty said: “Would I encourage someone to hug and kiss their elderly relatives? No I would not.
“It’s not against the law – and that’s the whole point – you can do it within the rules that are there, but it does not make sense because you could be carrying the virus.
What did Chris Whitty say about Christmas COVID rules?
“And, if you’ve got an elderly relative, that would not be the thing you would want to do in a period where we’re running up to a point where, actually, we might be able to protect older people.”
This comes after Prime Minister Boris Johnson confirmed that Brits can mix between three bubbles between December 23 and 27.
At the conference, Mr Johnson said the decision to relax restrictions over Christmas had been ‘difficult.’
The PM said: “It is an incredibly difficult decision.
What did Boris Johnson say about Christmas COVID rules?
“You’ve got to strike a balance between people’s strong desire to celebrate a family holiday, perhaps one of the most important family holidays of the year – which they frankly are going to do anyway – and the need to keep the virus under control.”
He had initially promised lockdown would end on December 2nd.
However, under the new tier system, 99% of the English population will now be under stricter restrictions from this date.
But the PM urged the population not to be disheartened by the new tier system.
He said: “Our tier is not your destiny, every area has the means of escape.”
He also didn’t confirm whether the army would be deployed to undergo mass COVID-19 testing in tier three zones.
The PM explained: “We’ll give the help and support of the armed services, the army, where necessary.
“But it will also take local leadership and local communities coming together to get those lateral flow tests out.
“Parts of the country and various towns are already coming forward saying they want to do what Liverpool has already done.
“But it depends very much on communities coming together, local leaders saying they want to do it. Because it’s not something that we want to be imposing. You can’t compel people to take a test.”
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