Covid restrictions may be behind us but the virus remains as cases continue to rise throughout the UK. Staying at home after testing positive can help reduce the spread but the government’s advice has changed
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For many, Covid feels like a bad memory that we’d like to forget, but for others it is still a very real concern.
However, Covid cases are rising, with growing concern over a fifth wave of the virus.
Due to the vaccines and natural immunity building up, its lethality is severely reduced, but high-risk people are still of concern.
Do you stay home when testing Covid positive?
All Covid restrictions were lifted in the UK in February 2022.
The government’s guidance is now to “live with Covid”, allowing the public to make an informed choice on socialising, mask-wearing and self-isolating.
This means that staying at home following a positive test is no longer required, but thanks to the vaccines and herd immunity, the lethality has been drastically reduced.
It still encourages people to avoid mixing with high-risk individuals, stating: “You should avoid being in close contact with people at higher risk from Covid-19.
“This is particularly important if their immune system means they’re at higher risk of serious illness from Covid-19, even if they’ve had a Covid-19 vaccine.”
Of course, there is no law forcing you to do anything, but it is down to individuals to make an informed and considered choice.
How many Covid cases are in the UK?
Covid cases are on the rise in the UK, with some experts even warning of a potential fifth wave.
Hospital patients are up 37%, up 2,000 people when compared to last week, with 7,822 now receiving treatment for the virus.
Cases increased sharply overall, with 1.7 million people testing positive for the virus last week, a 23% increase on the week prior (Monday June 13), according to new NHS data.
Will Covid restrictions return due to increase in cases?
The government has not hinted at the return of restrictions, with health researchers saying it is unlikely to happen.
Speaking to CNBC, Simon Clarke, associate professor in cellular microbiology at the University of Reading, said: “I don’t think we will have any mandatory restrictions unless the situation looks unmanageable for the health service, and especially the critical care service.”
The government looks committed to its plan of “living with Covid” following all restrictions being lifted in February.
Professor Jonathan Van-Tam England’s former deputy chief medical officer, told BBC Radio 4: “In terms of its kind of lethality, the picture now is much, much, much closer to seasonal flu than it was when [Covid] first emerged.”