British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Tuesday said that England could withstand a surge in Covid-19 infections without shutting down the economy as Britain reported another record daily high in cases, fuelled by the Omicron variant.
Johnson has resisted imposing stringent lockdown measures in England, betting that a vaccine booster drive and caution among the population would be enough to constrain the latest wave.
The United Kingdom reported 218,724 new Covid cases on Tuesday, a new record for the number of cases reported on a single day - although a figure that also was skewed by reporting lags over the holidays.
Johnson said he was sticking to the "Plan B" measures introduced in England last month, which included the wearing of face coverings on public transport and in shops but did not restrict gatherings or close businesses.
"Together with the Plan B measures that we introduced before Christmas, we have a chance to ride out this Omicron wave without shutting down our country once again. We can keep our schools and our businesses open, and we can find a way to live with this virus," Johnson said.