TIMELY the Covid isolation is said to be likely to be cut to 5 days to help combat the staffing crisis and get Britons back to work.
Government scientists reported Boris Johnson he will have to accept the slightly increased risk of people being quarantined while still being contagious if he wants people back to work sooner.
Health Minister Sajid Javid It is believed that among ministers agreed the policy made sense as infections began to peak but absenteeism at work continued.
The shorter quarantine period is expected to be ended tomorrow at a meeting of the government’s Covid-O committee.
The only areas of the UK where hospitalizations are still increasing are Yorkshire and the north-east.
In London, the figures are falling and the rest of the country is generally flat, giving confidence that the country is weathering the Omicron wave.
Although Javid was initially said to have resisted reducing the quarantine period, he is now willing to accept some additional risk of infection.
He is said to be “increasingly taking the view that this is a reasonable thing to do”, according to Daily mail.
“With epidemiology on track, the public [of cutting isolation] is becoming more apparent,” a government source told The Times.
Health officials have repeatedly said the Covid booster shots protect against Omicron and offer the best chance of weathering the pandemic.
Sun Jabs Army The campaign is helping to get key complementary vaccines in the UK’s arms to avoid the need for any new restrictions and protect the NHS.
The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) has submitted updated estimates to the Cabinet Office, concluding that a 5-day quarantine period would present a higher risk of infection than the current 7 days.
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It is estimated that about six percent leave quarantine while still contagious under current rules.
If the quarantine period is reduced to five days with a negative test result, this number will increase to about 8%.
“It’s a sliding scale of risks and it’s up to ministers to make trade-offs,” one official was quoted as saying. “If they think the risk to key workers out of work or the economy not moving as quickly as possible outweighs the risk of contagion, that’s up to them.”
Just last week, ministers were wary of making any changes that could exacerbate the epidemic and the need to introduce further restrictive measures.
LESS PRESSURE ON the NHS
In London, daily admissions fell 20% on New Year’s Eve while the south east showed signs of a 5% drop in the five days before an increase yesterday.
The Southwest received an average of 137 candidates, down from 142 on January 3.
In the east of England, daily hospital admissions now average 178, down from 182 on 5 January, although a consistent drop has yet to be determined.
The Midlands average has been generally flat over the past five days and, despite concerns about the North West, the same holds true there.
Scotland may also be “starting to turn the corner”, Nicola Sturgeon said as she begins to lift restrictions by allowing spectators to return to outdoor sporting events and concerts.
A government source reported that Professor Sir Chris Whitty, England’s chief medical officer, has “given some positive signals” and “all feel as though it is on the right track”.
It happened that The Sun was also able to reveal only two percent of people would be infected if Covid isolation ended on Thursday.
There is still some concern, however, as 379 deaths were reported yesterday, meaning the daily average has increased by 80% in just one week.
Professor John Edmunds of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, a member of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies, advocates testing-based isolation.
“Models suggest that these strategies appear to work extremely well in reducing the likelihood of community transmission and allowing people to return to work,” he told i.
UKHSA says allowing people to leave quarantine after five days without testing means up to 30% of people leave quarantine while still contagious.
https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/17295323/covid-isolation-cut-five-days-staffing-crisis/ Covid isolation ‘likely to be reduced to five days’ in bid to combat staffing crisis and get Britons back to work