The four UK Chief Medical Officers agreed it is safe to halt weekly staff testing, visitor and carer testing and hospital admission testing following a change to the Covid-19 alert level and, importantly, a high uptake of vaccinations.
Stakeholders were informed of the change to the guidance on 14 September and some healthcare and social care settings may therefore choose to pause regular testing before the end of the month.
It is the latest restriction to be lifted in health and social care settings – following the decision earlier this month to remove the requirement for facemasks in social care homes.
Testing will remain in place for admissions into care homes and to support appropriate clinical diagnosis and treatment for hospital patients and care home residents.
Unpaid carers and visitors to care homes and hospitals will no longer need to undertake routine testing, but those planning to see family or friends in these settings are advised follow the ‘Covid Sense’ guidelines and steer clear if they are unwell.