‘Extremely low' hospitality transmission rates highlight ‘unjustified' restrictions

26 October 2020 by
‘Extremely low' hospitality transmission rates highlight ‘unjustified' restrictions

"Extremely low" transmission rates, which have seen just 0.0003% of customers notify businesses of Covid-19 cases, have renewed calls for governments to rethink their restrictions on hospitality.

In the 14 weeks hospitality businesses have been open, businesses have reported an employee infection rate of 0.48%, translating to an average of 0.06 customer infections per venue.

A UKHospitality survey of 568 businesses across 12,522 venues employing some 358,000 people saw 1,728 infections among the hospitality workforce across a period that has seen about 20 million shifts worked.

Businesses said they had been notified of 780 cases among customers across a period that included the Eat Out to Help Out promotion and comprises some 250 million guest visits. This translates to a notification rate of 0.0003% of all customer visits.

Asked how many times they had been contacted by the test and trace system – or its equivalent across devolved nations – the business leaders reported just 104 notifications across the 14 weeks.

Hospitality leaders have repeatedly highlighted Public Health England data showing the rate of transmission across their venues is far below that in care homes, schools, workplaces and hospitals.

Despite this hospitality continues to be a target for increased restrictions and has seen the introduction of curfews, curbs on the sale of alcohol and, in some cases, complete shutdowns. Businesses have reported that the latest rounds of restrictions have, in many cases, brought the industry's tentative recovery to a screeching halt.

UKHospitality said the data shared from its survey proves that these restrictions are "unjustified" and should be reconsidered. CEO Kate Nicholls said: "While there are different data available on infection rates the data that we have collected paints a picture of what we have seen and has been identified to the hospitality sector. This is that there is an extremely low level of transmission in the hospitality sector, confirming the view that measures specifically targeting the hospitality sector are unjustified and should be reconsidered."

To sign the Can the Curfew petition click here

Picture: Shutterstock

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