Government announces coronavirus (COVID-19) testing regime for arrivals

Government announces coronavirus (COVID-19) testing regime for arrivals

The Department of Health and Social Care has set out new details of a coronavirus (COVID-19) testing regime for arrivals from abroad who are to be exempt from quarantine for work purposes. Those exempted include hauliers, aircraft pilots and crew, and international prison escorts. The new regime will use lateral flow tests, with the aim of rapidly identifying cases entering the UK, and will come into force on 6 April 2021.

Those who remain in the UK for longer than two days will be required to take a test before the end of their second day in the country, and then a further test every three days. Tests will be made available via home testing, workplace testing programmes or community testing sites. Those who test positive will have to self-isolate for ten days from the day after the test was taken. The positive test will be sent for genomic sequencing to ascertain whether the case is one of a concerning variant.

The full list of professions exempt from quarantine requirements and which have access to bespoke testing are:

• hauliers

• border security duties (UK officials and contractors)

• international prison escorts

• aircraft crew and pilots

• aerospace engineers

• channel tunnel system workers

• international rail crew, passenger and freight operations (Eurostar, Eurotunnel, Network Rail and high-speed rail workers)

• seafarers and masters

• essential defence activity

• persons transporting human blood, blood components, organs, tissues or cells

• seasonal agricultural workers

Full guidance for exempt groups regarding the bespoke testing regimes in England can be found here.

Source: Bespoke testing regime unveiled for exempt international arrivals

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