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Covid-19 Update

Volume 686: debated on Wednesday 30 December 2020

Yesterday, we conducted the latest formal review of tier allocations across England. The allocations and a detailed rationale can be found attached.

The new variant means that most of the country is now in tier 4 and almost all of the country in tiers 3 and 4. This is absolutely necessary. Where we still can give places greater freedoms, we will continue to do so.

As set out in the covid-19 winter plan, there are five indicators which guide our decisions for any given area, alongside consideration of “human geographies” like travel patterns.

These are:

1. Case detection rates in all age groups

2. Case detection rates in the over 60s

3. The rate at which cases are rising or falling

4. Positivity rate (the number of positive cases detected as a percentage of tests taken)

5. Pressure on the NHS.

These are not easy decisions, but they have been made according to the best clinical advice, and the best possible data from the JBC.

The regulations will require the Government to review the allocations at least every 14 days. We will also take urgent action when the data suggests it is required.

We will also deposit a comprehensive list and the data packs used to inform these decisions in the Libraries of both Houses.

These changes will apply from Thursday 31 December 2020. This list has also been published on and a postcode checker will be available for the public to check what rules apply in their local area.

The attachments can be viewed online at: http://www.