Double jabbed and under 18s will not have to self-isolate from August 16
- Credit: PA
People who are fully vaccinated will not have to self-isolate if they are a close contact of a coronavirus case from August 16, Sajid Javid has announced.
Anyone under the age of 18 who is a close contact of a positive case will also no longer have to self-isolate, the health secretary said.
The Health Secretary made the announcements as he updated MPs on the latest plans for easing restrictions after Boris Johnson promised the wholesale lifting of coronavirus rules in England - expected on July 19.
Making a statement to the Commons, he said: "We will soon be able to take a risk-based approach that recognises the huge benefits that the vaccines provide both to people who get the jab and their loved ones too.
"So from 16 August when even more people will have the protection of both doses, and when modelling suggests the risks from the virus will be even lower, anyone who's a close contact of a positive case will no longer have to self-isolate if they have been fully vaccinated.
"If someone gets their second dose just before or just after 16 August, they'll need to wait two weeks, after which their second jab can take effect and give them these new freedoms."
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Mr Javid said those double jabbed contacted by NHS Test and Trace to say they've been close to someone who has coronavirus will still be advised to take a PCR test as soon as possible.
"This new approach means we can manage the virus in a way that is proportionate to the pandemic while maintaining the freedoms that are so important to us all," he added.
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On under-18s, he said in line with the approach for adults, close contacts of a positive case will not have to self-isolate.
"Instead they'll be given advice about whether they should get tested, dependent on their age and will need to self-isolate only if they test positive,” he said.
"These measures will also come into force on August 16 ahead of the autumn school term."
Education secretary Gavin Williamson will also make a statement in the Commons later on Tuesday on plans to replace the requirement for entire school bubbles to isolate after a positive Covid contact with enhanced testing.