Close contacts of positive Covid-19 cases are strongly encouraged to continuing getting PCR tests, as rules around self-isolation change today (Monday 16).
From today, close contacts of positive cases no longer need to isolate, provided they are fully vaccinated (with the second jab more than 14 days ago) or are under 18.
People who have symptoms or test positive for the virus will still need to self-isolate for 10 days.
Although not a legal requirement, all fully vaccinated people identified as a close contact of a positive case are being advised to get a PCR test to ensure they are not Covid positive. They do not need to isolate while they await their test results.
Continued testing will ensure people are not unwittingly spreading the virus.
Dr Johnny McMahon, Staffordshire County Council’s Cabinet Support Member for Public Health and Integrated Care said: “News that fully-vaccinated adults will no longer need to isolate is certainly welcome, and will end the so-called ‘pingdemic’ we have been experiencing recently.
“However, it’s important for us to remember that Covid-19 is still very much with us, and we must do everything we can to stop it spreading. This is why we’re encouraging everyone who has been identified as a close contact, but does not now need to isolate, to get themselves a PCR test as soon as possible. This way, they can be sure they are not unwittingly spreading the virus.
“It is also important to keep following the rules around Covid-19 to prevent the spread – continuing to wash our hands, wear a face covering in crowded areas, and ensuring good indoor ventilation to blow the virus away. This is especially important as we move into the autumn and winter months, where respiratory illnesses spread more easily.
“To those who are still unvaccinated or have only had one dose, I would strongly recommend you book your appointment as soon as possible, and avoid having to isolate when identified as a close contact.”
The rules around self-isolation can be found at www.gov.uk/coronavirus.