By Elizabeth Piper
LONDON (Reuters) – Reducing the self-isolation period of those who test positive for Govt-19 to seven to five days will help British employers who have been hard hit by staff shortages, Education Minister Nadeem Zahawi said on Sunday.
The Omicron variant is still spreading in the UK and many businesses, schools and hospitals are struggling with staff shortages, intensifying calls for isolation rules after a positive test to stay calm.
Last month, U.S. health officials reduced the recommended isolation time for asymptomatic Covid-19 cases to five days, compared to the previous guideline of 10 days.
“Obviously, I always get scientific advice on it. It will definitely help ease some of the pressure on schools, key staff and others,” Jahavi told Sky News.
He said the UK Health Care Agency was reviewing the length of the lock-up period and that the government was doing all it could to ensure the health service was operational when he called it “a few weeks”.
He said the percentage of teacher absenteeism in schools was 8.5% and could rise further, adding that his office was making contingency plans to keep up to 25% absenteeism, including seeking retired teachers.
(By Elizabeth Piper)
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