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Full timetable for ending all Covid rules in England, free testing and self-isolation payments

todayFebruary 21, 2022

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Prime Minister Boris Johnson has set out his Government’s plan to end all remaining Covid restrictions, as well as free testing, over the next few months.

He says Britain has now passed the Omicron peak after a significant increase in the number of cases, and hospitalisations and deaths, over the festive period.

But Mr Johnson said the population was now sufficiently immunised against the virus, which warrants the easing of all remaining restrictions.

Others, however, have expressed concern, including for those on zero-hours contracts as well as people who remain at risk of severe disease if they catch the virus.

The plans are now subject to parliamentary approval.

Below are three key dates announced on Monday afternoon (February 21).

From Monday, February 21

The guidance for staff and students in most education and childcare settings to take twice-weekly testing, even if they have no symptoms is ending immediately.

Thursday, February 24:

Self isolation will no longer be a legal requirement for those who test positive from midnight.

Those who receive a positive Covid test will still be advised to stay at home for at least five days, but will not be obliged to under law under the plans.

Routine contact tracing will also end on Thursday, as will self-isolation payments and the legal obligation for individuals to tell their employers about their requirement to isolate.

March 24:

Mr Johnson told MPs in the Commons that changes to statutory sick pay and employment support allowance designed to help people through the coronavirus pandemic will end on March 24.

Included in these arrangements is a £500 self-isolation payment. This support payment will end.

Statutory sick pay will return to pre-pandemic arrangements. Since the pandemic, it has been paid from day one. It will instead return to the former arrangement of sick pay after day four.

April 1:

Free tests for asymptomatic and symptomatic Britons in England will end for the general population.

The mass testing will be scaled back from April 1 and will instead be focused on the most vulnerable. People are currently able to access both lateral flow and PCR tests for free.

The UK Health Security Agency is set to determine the details, but it is expected some level of asymptomatic testing will continue in settings such as adult social care.

But the Department of Health and Social Care will receive no extra money to deliver the testing.

In the springtime adults over 75, vulnerable people and vulnerable young people who are immuno-suppressed will also be offered a fourth Covid jab to boost their immunity.

Written by: thehitnetwork

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todayFebruary 21, 2022

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