Boris Johnson ended the UK government’s “Plan B” social restrictions to combat the Omicron variant of Art coronavirus in England on February 24, 2022, apparently drawing the line under the correction era once and for all.
Following up on the decision in the House of Commons in January, the Prime Minister said that working from home mandates, management of wearing a mask in public places and presentations NHS Covid cards Entry to crowded venues was to be canceled as the New Year surge in infections eased without leading to the wave of mass hospitalizations that experts had feared.
The latest revision of the rules also meant that those who test positive for Corona virus infection covid-19 self-isolation was no longer required by law, overturning the previous requirement that sick people not feel quarantine for at least five days and will only appear after testing negative twice after that.
Before turning to the government’s more pragmatic “Living with Covid” policy, putting the onus on individuals rather than the state, the then health minister Sajid Javid already reduced independent isolation a period of seven to five days, as the wave of Omicron infections that hit the UK in December and flared up on New Year’s Day thankfully did not lead to the mass hospitalizations that had been feared.
The February law change also marked the end of the £500-a-month self-isolation support payment for people on low incomes and routine contact tracing, meaning employees no longer had to tell their bosses they had to go into quarantine and that their close contacts no longer required daily testing.
The Labor Party and a number of scientific experts protested the decision as premature, and the abandonment of face masks and social distancing did lead to a gradual but steady rise in the number of Covid cases in early March.
Since then, life has largely returned to normal, and national attention has shifted to the war Ukraine, cost of living the crisis and drama of the succession of the Conservative Party.
However, a rise in new Covid cases in June has led experts to warn that Britain is in the midst of the fifth wave coronavirus infections caused by Sub-variants BA.4 and BA.5 Omicron.
The country saw a 43 percent surge in cases earlier this month, which appeared to be triggered by people coming together to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee over a four-day weekend, and the rate of infection has continued to climb to a peak of around 4.6 million cases in in mid-July before gradually starting to decline.
While Britain is in a much better place in terms of infections in August, closer to just 120,000 a day according to the ZOE Health Studythe recent outbreak is a timely reminder that the coronavirus is not gone and that we still need to be vigilant as mutations continue to emerge around the world.
It is by no means impossible that new transmission containment measures, including the deployment of second booster vaccine.
However, for now current NHS advice is that if you think you have symptoms related to Covid you should get tested for lateral flow and self-isolate at home for five days if you test positive to avoid passing it on to others, although again , it is not a legal requirement.
You must stay away from people who may be particularly vulnerable because of their age or pre-existing medical condition for 10 days, and if you do have to go out in public if you are unwell, you are advised to wear a mask, avoid crowds in closed premises and wash hands for at least 20 seconds.
If you are concerned about your symptoms or think they are getting worse, you are encouraged to visit 111.nhs.ukcall 111 or call your GP.