What should I do if I test positive for Covid? Rules around the UK explained and if you have to self-isolate


The bulk of Covid-19 restrictions around the UK have now been lifted, however the quantity of instances stays excessive following the unfold of the Omicron BA.2 sub-variant.

Common entry to free lateral movement (LFT) and PCR exams has already ended in England as half of the plan to stay with the virus, with Scotland, Wales and Northern Eire additionally scaling again free testing.

The nations are following barely completely different timetables for easing the guidelines and have distinct steerage in place in phrases of self-isolation – right here’s what to do if you test positive around the UK.

What should I do if I test positive for Covid?

In the UK individuals are not legally required to self-isolate after experiencing Covid signs or testing positive.

The Authorities is constant to advise that folks in England with Covid to keep at residence and keep away from contact with others for 5 days after the day of their test.

In explicit, you should keep away from being in shut contact with individuals at larger threat from Covid, for instance if they are aged or have a weakened immune system, even if they have had the vaccine.

If you are unable to work at home after testing positive, you are suggested to “talk to your employer about options available to you”.

Individuals who have signs in Scotland are suggested to self-isolate and ebook a free PCR test.

If this is positive, you should self isolate for 10 days from the date your signs began or, if you are testing positive with out signs, from the date of your test.

You’ll be able to finish quarantine if you have two destructive lateral movement test outcomes taken 24 hours other than day six onwards.

HM Government and NHS advertising boards advice to stay alert to the symptoms as the Coronavirus lockdown continues, the city centre is still very quiet while more traffic and people are returning, and with restrictions due to be relaxed further in the coming days, the quiet city may be coming to an end as businesses are set to start to reopen soon on 27th May 2020 in Birmingham, England, United Kingdom. Coronavirus or Covid-19 is a respiratory illness that has not previously been seen in humans. While much or Europe has been placed into lockdown, the UK government has put in place more stringent rules as part of their long term strategy, and in particular 'social distancing'. (photo by Mike Kemp/In PIctures via Getty Images)
The bulk of Covid restrictions have now been scrapped around the UK (Photograph: Getty Pictures)

In Wales, individuals with signs are suggested to self-isolate and order a free lateral movement test.

Following a positive consequence, you should isolate for 5 full days, beginning the day after signs emerged or the day of the test, whichever is earliest.

If you test destructive on day 5 and six, you can then depart isolation. If not, you should proceed to take day by day exams till getting two destructive outcomes in row or till day 10, whichever comes sooner.

Individuals in who test positive in Northern Eire are suggested to isolate for 10 days from the date you took the test or the date your signs began, whichever is sooner.

If you show Covid signs, you should isolate and ebook a free PCR test. You’ll be able to finish your isolation if you have two consecutive destructive LFT outcomes taken 24 hours aside, the first taken no sooner than day 5.

What are the signs of Covid?

The NHS now lists the following as official Covid signs:

  • High temperature or shivering (chills) – a excessive temperature means you really feel hot to contact on your chest or again (you do not want to measure your temperature)
  • New, steady cough – this means coughing lots for more than an hour, or three or more coughing episodes in 24 hours
  • Loss or change to your sense of odor or style
  • Shortness of breath
  • Feeling drained or exhausted
  • Aching body
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • Blocked or runny nostril
  • Loss of urge for food
  • Diarrhoea
  • Feeling sick or being sick

For many of the pandemic, solely the first three signs above have been listed by the NHS.

Nonetheless, it added an extra 9 indicators at the begin of April, explaining: “The symptoms are very similar to symptoms of other illnesses, such as colds and flu.”

Can I nonetheless get a Covid test for free?

Since the begin of April, solely individuals who fulfill sure standards can get a lateral movement (LFT) or PCR test for free in England.

Free symptomatic testing is now solely supplied for:

  • Sufferers in hospital, for whom a test is required for scientific administration or to help remedy pathways.
  • Individuals who are eligible for Covid-19 remedies as a result of they are at larger threat of getting severely in poor health from Covid-19. Individuals in this group will be contacted straight and despatched lateral movement exams to keep at residence for use if they have signs as effectively as being instructed how to reorder exams.
  • People who stay or work in high-risk closed settings, for instance in some NHS, Social Care and Jail (and different Locations of Detention) settings the place an infection wants to be recognized rapidly to minimise outbreaks.

In any other case, you will have to buy a test from an authorized listing of lateral movement and PCR test suppliers which you can discover right here, together with contact details.

If you use one of these authorized suppliers you will be in a position to report your consequence on the Authorities web site right here. Many main suppliers are providing lateral movement exams for around £2 every.

In Scotland, lateral movement exams stay free for now, however individuals will have to pay for kits for routine residence testing after Monday 18 April.

PCR exams will proceed to be obtainable for individuals with Covid signs till Saturday 30 April.

In Wales, you can nonetheless get a lateral movement test for free if you have signs, however PCR testing for the basic public has stopped. Nonetheless, LFTs will cease being obtainable for free from the finish of June.

In Northern Eire, entry to PCR and lateral movement exams will stay free till Friday 22 April. From then, LFTs will nonetheless be free, however solely for individuals who are displaying Covid signs.