Plan B measures are being introduced to respond to UK cases of the Omicron variant of Covid-19.
On 8 December, the government announced a move to Plan B measures, as outlined in its Covid-19 autumn/winter plan. Plan B measures will come into force while more data on vaccine efficacy is assessed.
The aim of Plan B is to help slow the spread of the Omicron variant and reduce the chances of the NHS coming under unsustainable pressure, while buying time to give boosters to more people.
The Plan B measures are:
- From Friday 10 December mandatory face covering rules are extended to most indoor settings, but will not include hospitality settings.
- From Monday 13 December you should work from home if you can. If you who cannot work from home you should continue to travel to your workplace.
- From Wednesday 15 December mandatory certification will be introduced for certain settings. This means you will need to show vaccination status (NHS Covid pass) or a recent negative test to enter certain high risk settings. Some settings already ask for these as part of their own terms of entry, however this new measure will make it compulsory.
The following rules on international travel and for close contacts of suspected Covid-19 cases apply:
- International arrivals from non-red list countries who are fully vaccinated will need to take a Covid-19 test in the two days before travelling to England. On arrival they must immediately isolate at their destination accommodation.
They must also book and pay for a Covid-19 PCR test to be taken before day two of their stay and continue to isolate until they receive their test result. They will only be permitted to leave isolation if the test result is negative. If the test result is positive or unclear, they will need to isolate for 10 days.
- People who are fully vaccinated and identified as a contact of someone with Covid-19 – whether Omicron or not – should take an NHS rapid lateral flow test every day for seven days to help slow the spread of Covid-19 (instead of the ten-day self-isolation period). However unvaccinated adults must self-isolate for ten days if they are a contact of someone with Covid-19.
Please make sure you take up the offer of a Covid-19 booster vaccination as soon as you are eligible. Information about the booster and eligibility can be found on the NHS website.
For the latest guidance, visit the GOV.UK website.