Everyone who tests positive for covid ‘could be paid £500’


veryone who tests positive for covid in England could be given £500 under plans said to be under consideration by ministers.

The aim of proposals, which would reportedly cost up to £450million a week, would be to encourage more people to take tests and self-isolate.

The £500 payment would apply irrespective of people’s age, employment status or ability to work from home.

Coronavirus in numbers: UK death toll reaches 94,580

The Standard has contacted the Department of Health for comment on the reports.

It comes after government polling found that only 17 per cent of people with symptoms were coming forward to get a test over fears that a positive result could stop them working.

The £453m a week cost is 12 times the cost of the current system, according to an official policy paper cited in the reports.

All you need to know from the Government’s coronavirus briefing

The 16-page document is also said to outline plans for police to be given access to health data for the first time, to crack down on quarantine breaches.

The UK recorded another 1,290 deaths on Thursday and 37,892 new positive cases, amid uncertainty over whether the current lockdown will do enough to bring the pandemic under control. 

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