Thursday, May 26, 2022

UK health minister to address lawmakers amid debate over Covid-19 isolation period

The government has already reduced isolation period to seven days from 10 days to people in England who get a negative result on a rapid lateral flow test two days in a row.

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British health minister Sajid Javid will give a statement on Covid-19 to parliament on Thursday, amid a debate in government over whether to cut the isolation period of people with Covid-19 to 5 days from 7 days.

The rapid spread of the Omicron variant has fuelled a spike in Covid-19 cases to record highs in Britain, though the roll-out of booster shots and the lesser severity of the variant has meant hospitalisations and deaths have not risen as sharply.

The surge has cause major disruption to the staffing of hospitals, schools and transport, however, as staff have to self-isolate.

The government has already reduced isolation period to seven days from 10 days to people in England who get a negative result on a rapid lateral flow test two days in a row.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson this week said the government was looking at further cutting the isolation period to five days from seven, after a government minister on Sunday said that reducing the self-isolation period would help employers hard hit by absences.

Britain has reported 151,000 deaths from Covid-19 in total, the seventh highest death total in the world.

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