NHS workers will have to quarantine for 14 days on their return to UK from high-risk countries from tomorrow.
The Government confirmed tonight that they have scrapped the exemption which means healthcare workers don’t have to isolate at home.
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New guidance slipped out this afternoon said staff will now have to spend two weeks at home if they come back from Spain or other ‘unsafe’ countries.
Ministers made the change amid fears of a second wave of the virus making its way from Europe back to the UK.
Boris Johnson and Matt Hancock have expressed their fears of a second wave rolling towards us in the coming weeks as cases on the continent skyrocket.
The change comes into effect with just hours notice, and will likely disrupt thousands of holidays in the coming weeks.
The guidance said tonight: “Following review of whether the measure is still necessary, an exemption has been removed to minimise the risk of onward chains of transmission that might infect the wider workforce.
“The move brings them in line with the general public and further protects the NHS and social care system from the spread of coronavirus from overseas, as signs of second waves begin to show in other countries.”
From 31 July the Government will make the changes.
It comes just hours before an expected decision to take Belgium and Luxembourg off the safe travel list after a spike in infections.
Ministers are set to change the official advice as early as tomorrow.
Earlier today it was confirmed that people who have virus symptoms will have to isolate for ten days rather than seven – after another change in advice.
Scientists said it was because they found out that people can still be infectious between days seven and nine after getting the bug.