New Covid rules: All your questions answered – from work to pub evenings


Prime Minister Boris Johnson has removed all remaining Covid legal restrictions in the UK, including the isolation requirement.

It will mean mandatory self-isolation will be deported from Thursday, Isolation payments of £500 and Day One sick pay will apply, and free tests will be canceled from April 1st – with There has been a 72-hour limit to stop stocking.

The Prime Minister said testing, tracing and isolation had cost £2 billion in January alone and added: “Those waiting for a complete end to this war … will limit freedoms. of the British people for a long time to come.”

It came as a survey of NHS The federation warns three-quarters of NHS leaders in England do not agree with the elimination of self-isolation.

When the rules become advice, what it really means for your day-to-day life, our health and financial experts answer the questions.

Side stream tests will be limited in supply as Covid rules change


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If someone who cannot work from home, for example a bus driver, has tested positive but is not feeling sick, should they go to work and if they are sick get paid to work? self-isolate?

This will depend on your employer’s policy as it will ultimately be up to them to decide if they want employees to have Covid at work.

If you are too sick to work, this time will be recorded as sick leave, which will be eligible for standard sickness pay.

If an employee tests positive but is not unfit for work, for example because they have mild cold-like symptoms, then employers need to consider their stance.

“After the change in “personal responsibility”, if the employer tells the employee, who is healthy enough to work, that they cannot work, then the employer will have to pay adequate unless the person is able to work from home or government. Pam Loch, managing partner at Loch Solicitors, explains.

“The employer will have to change the employment contract so there is no obligation to pay the full salary if they send the employee home, unless the employer can argue that they cannot have a partner. work legally while you have. Covid-19. ”

Mandatory self-isolation will be scrapped from Thursday, £500 isolation payments and Day One sick pay will apply, and free tests will be canceled from April 1.



If an employee decides to stay home on their own, they will not be paid unless it is an agreed period of absence (e.g. holiday or unpaid leave) and the employer can classify It is an unauthorized absence when an employee faces disciplinary action.

I don’t want to catch Covid at work, what measures must my employer take to protect me?

You have eliminated the mandatory face covering


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Your employer has a duty to care for all employees and must ensure they operate a safe work environment. Employers will have to consider what their position is on Covid positive tests and update policies to take into account their risk assessments.

For example, if they have a number of clinically vulnerable employees working for them, employers may not want to allow employees who test positive to work in the workplace. .

If an employer running a small coffee shop notices that one of their waiting staff has developed Covid, should they tell them to stay home and still get paid?

Once the legal requirement for self-isolation changes, it is likely that the absence of Covid will need to be treated in the same way as any other respiratory condition such as the flu and the common cold.

Therefore, employers do not need to ask employees to stay home just because they have tested positive unless it is consistent with the company’s obligation to provide a safe workplace. . This will depend on their Covid risk assessment.

If an employee is able to work from home and develop Covid but their employer says they have to come into the office, can they be disciplined for refusing?

Employers are being urged to consider whether people feel comfortable returning to the office


Getty Images / iStockphoto)

If employers do not consider commuting to work unsafe and they consider going to the office a reasonable management guideline, workers may be subject to disciplinary action if they refuse to attend, unless when the government changes regulations on this.

However, employers should carefully consider the reasons someone refuses to come to the office before making a decision.

For example, if some of their colleagues are extremely vulnerable, they may be required to be more understanding.

I booked an expensive UK travel but if I arrive in Covid and don’t want to travel will my insurance pay?

Passengers wearing masks or covering their faces due to the Covid pandemic arrive at Heathrow Airport


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This largely depends on what individual insurance providers include in their policies.

It’s unlikely your insurance policy will cover you if you cancel your vacation if you’re still healthy enough to travel – unless there are restrictions by the government.

If you go to work but a coworker tells you they have tested positive, can you ask them to work from home or ask to go home themselves?

This will depend on your employer’s office policy once the measures are relaxed.

If you go home without agreeing to it with your manager it could be considered an unauthorized absence and you could face disciplinary action.

If you tell someone to go home and they complain about you, you could receive a lawsuit against you and potentially be disciplined.

Employers may be willing to agree to your request and ask employees to work from home if they are able to do so, perhaps for a limited period of time.

However, the employer has no legal obligation to do so unless the government changes the regulations or the employer has to do it for health and safety reasons.

If you have only mild symptoms, how is it safe to walk into an office or other workplace?

People with Covid symptoms are being asked to consider whether going to work was the right decision


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Azeem Majeed, professor of primary care and public health at Imperial College London, says: “The question you should ask yourself is whether you feel comfortable being in the same office as someone who has a test result. Covid-19 positive the day before?

“Now that the legal requirement to isolate after testing positive in the UK is ending, employers will need to carry out risk assessments and implement their own infection control policies.

“My advice to current employers is to exercise caution and advise employees with positive Covid-19 symptoms or tests to take some time off work until we have more experience with the impact. action of changing the rules.”

I was planning to go out with my friends for my birthday but it turned out well. If we were all triple vaxxed, how big of a risk would I be if I still went?

Many people will now wonder what their social life will be like in the future


Getty Images / iStockphoto)

Professor Majeed said: “People who are fully vaccinated can still get infected. If you test positive for Covid-19, I strongly advise against attending the event, especially if it takes place in a crowded indoor venue where there is a significant risk of infection for those present. .

“While vaccination against Covid-19 substantially reduces the risk of serious illness and death, there are risks for older adults and clinically vulnerable individuals even if they fully vaccinated.”

Will GPs and hospitals still only see you if you have no Covid symptoms?

Professor Majeed said: “If you have Covid-19 symptoms, you should notify your GP or hospital before they examine you so they can take appropriate precautions.

“We are still waiting for NHS guidance on how the new rules will work for them, such as whether masks will still be required in healthcare settings.

“However, as they deal with clinically vulnerable people, the NHS will need to take appropriate precautions to prevent someone with Covid-19 infecting other patients. “.

I was told to take cover while locking the door, and now I’ve been stabbed three times. Is it safe for me to go to places where people may have Covid?

An NHS Health On The Move mobile vaccination service in the town center of Chesham


Maureen McLean / REX / Shutterstock)

Professor Majeed said: “If you are in the group advised to cover up during lockdown, Covid-19 still poses a risk to you even if you are fully vaccinated. You should continue to wear a well-fitting FFP2 mask in places like stores and on public transport.

“Whether you go to places with a higher risk of Covid-19 infection such as nightclubs or not is a personal decision that you need to make but I advise you to exercise caution until the rate of infection in the community is high. copper fell further.”

I work in a care home. What if I test positive, will I go to work as usual?

Professor Majeed said: “People living in care homes are at very high risk of serious illness and death if they become infected with Covid-19.

“Therefore, care homes should adopt appropriate infection control measures, such as requiring staff who test positive for Covid-19 to self-isolate for a period of time.”

If people go on with their normal lives even if they have Covid, what is likely to happen with the infections and could it lead to herd immunity?

Professor Majeed said: “In recent weeks, the number of Covid-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths have decreased. The high level of immunity in the population from previous vaccinations and infections should keep the number of severe cases of Covid-19 under control.

“However, people’s immunity declines over time, which is why the government has just announced that those most at risk of contracting Covid-19, those over 75 years old and those If you have a weak immune system, you will be vaccinated again.

“The long-term future is uncertain and we do not yet know if an additional booster will be made available to a wider range of people by the end of the year. We also don’t know what will happen next winter when there may be lower levels of immunity in the population.

“Ultimately, there is always the risk that a more infectious variant of Coronavirus can emerge as Omicron variation that we face by the end of 2021. Unfortunately, Covid-19 will stay with us for the foreseeable future and become a part of our lives, just like respiratory infections other respiratory infections like flu. ”

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Fry Electronics Team

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