Relief for NHS staff as Covid controls are finally relaxed

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Certain patients having surgery will not need to take a PCR test or isolate for three days beforehand. This only applies to patients who are low risk, fully vaccinated, have no symptoms and return a negative lateral flow test on the day of their procedure. Enhanced cleaning routines can also revert to standard procedures in low-risk areas.

Health Secretary Sajid Javid said other healthcare settings, including GP practices, will soon undergo assessments.

Announcing the news, he said: “We can now safely begin to relieve some of the most stringent infection control to benefit patients and ease the burden on hard-working NHS staff.”

Dr Jenny Harries, UKHSA chief executive, said: “This is a first step to help the NHS treat more patients more quickly, while ensuring their safety
and balancing their different needs for care.”

Local NHS providers will have the ultimate say on whether to relax measures in line with the guidance.

In settings where control measures are eased, all stuff must be asymptomatic and fully vaccinated, and must not have had contact with a positive case.

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