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Over 50s lockdown: Will people over the age of 50 be told to stay at home?

BORIS Johnson had asked his team to prepare a series of measures that could help avoid shutting the country down again.

It was reported that one of those measures could see over 50s back on house arrest. But is it true? Here is everything we know...

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The government considered asking those over the age of 50 to stay at home
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The government considered asking those over the age of 50 to stay at homeCredit: SWNS:South West News Service

Will people over the age of 50 be told to stay at home?

It was reported on August 1 that the PM and his closest aides were considering the possibility of forcing Brits over the age of 50 to shield.

Brits aged between 50 and 70 would have been given personalised risk ratings in a move that would add to the 2.2million people who shielded during the Spring peak, The Sunday Times reported.

A war games meeting on July 29 had senior officials discuss with the Prime Minister different options in different scenarios if the virus spirals out of control again.

It included possibly tailoring personalised advice to those aged between 50 and 70 with a letter in September or October "before it gets cold."

But on August 3, Number 10 reportedly dropped plans to target over 50s in a fresh lockdown.

Ministers shelved the plans following a backlash after Boris Johnson was urged not to pursue such an "ageist" and "ill-thought-out" plan, reported The Telegraph.

Downing Street killed off the scheme after officials deemed it impractical, hard to enforce, feared it could stall economic recovery and could be seen as a mixed message.

Analysis published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases at the end of March, showed an increase in risk for coronavirus once a person reaches middle age.

The measure asking over 50s to stay at home was deemed as 'ageist' and 'ill-thought-out'
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The measure asking over 50s to stay at home was deemed as 'ageist' and 'ill-thought-out'Credit: Getty Images - Getty

What is the current advice for over 50s?

Coronavirus is thought to have harsher effects on older people but there is currently no specific advice for the over 50 age bracket.

Clinically vulnerable people and over 70s were told to shield during the peak in Spring.

But everyone regardless of age should still be taking all the necessary precautions to prevent themselves from either catching the virus or from passing it on.

Who should still be shielding?

Millions were put on house arrest when the country first went into lockdown in March and were told not to leave home at all because either their age or health condition put them at high risk of dying from the disease.

In July the rules were relaxed a bit and from August 1 the advice was put on pause completely.

It means those who previously shielded can now fully reintegrate with the rest of the country.

If you were shielding you can now go into work provided the workspace is Covid-19 secure - but everyone is still being urged to work from home if they can.

You can go outside as much as you like, although it is still recommended to keep social interactions low.

Clinically vulnerable children can return to school if they are eligible and meet their friends again.

It is possible to go outside to buy food, to places of worship and for exercise - always maintaining strict social distancing.

The new rules mean that you will no longer receive free food parcels, medicine deliveries and basic care from the National Shielding Service.

Local authority volunteers and NHS Volunteer Responders will still be on hand to help, and you can get priority delivery slots.

Coronavirus isolation rules ‘must apply' to all over 50s because they face high risk of death
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