Key dates YOU need to know about Covid rule changes as Boris Johnson eases restrictions

BORIS Johnson today unveiled his “Covid Life Plan” as he permanently abandoned coronavirus-related restrictions.

The prime minister laid out his timeline for the return of the British to normal this afternoon, with the next few months to gradually lift the draconian restrictions.


Brits will no longer be forced to self-isolate if they have Covid1 credit

By September 2022, all temporary provisions of the Coronavirus Law will be repealed.

And rules around testing, free tests, self-isolation and contact tracing will be phased out over the coming months.

Here are the key dates you need to know for England.

February 24 – Self-isolation

From Thursday 24 February, anyone who tests positive for Covid will not be forced to self-isolate.

Currently, any person who has the virus must isolate for at least five full days.

If you get two negative lateral flow swabs on the fifth and sixth days, you can get out of isolation early.

But from Thursday, fully vaccinated Britons and those under 18 will not be asked to be tested for seven days.

The legal requirement for unvaccinated close contacts to self-isolate will also be removed, and contact tracing will be eliminated.

Therefore, self-isolation payments of up to £500 for low-income people will also be waived from 24 February.

March 24 – Payment of sick leave.

From March 24, the government will eliminate more generous statutory sickness benefits and the Covid Employment Support Allowance.

Before the pandemic, people could claim statutory sickness benefit after four days of absence and ESA after seven days.

But because of the pandemic, it was possible to get sick leave from the first day of absence.

From March 24, the system will return to the previous pre-pandemic rules.

April 1 – Free testing

Free universal testing will end on April 1, and Boris Johnson hailed the UK’s successful introduction of a vaccine as a more valuable tool to prevent serious illness.

He added that a small number of free tests would continue for vulnerable people with symptoms and NHS patients.

And asymptomatic testing in nursing homes and the NHS will continue free of charge.

Mr Johnson told MPs: “The budget for testing, tracing and isolation in 2020-21 exceeded the entire budget of the Department of the Interior.

“It cost another £15.7bn this fiscal year. And £2bn in January alone at the height of the Omicron wave.

“Now we have to reduce it.”

Spring – Booster shots for over 75s.

Although no exact date has yet been given, millions of vulnerable Britons will receive another extra shot this spring.

Individuals over 75, residents of nursing homes, and immunocompromised people over 12 years of age will be eligible for another vaccine if six months have passed since the last vaccination.

They will be offered a choice of Moderna or Pfizer Covid shots, with experts unsure what summer will bring but determined to keep vulnerable groups immune.

Health officials also expect that, like the flu, next winter could bring another wave of Covid problems – and plans for a fall vaccination program will likely be in place.


Travel search forms may be removed by the Easter holidays, but this has yet to be confirmed.

At present, anyone returning to the UK only needs to fill out a Passenger Locator form if they are fully vaccinated.

And while the forms were simplified earlier this month, Transportation Secretary Grant Shapps is said to be pushing for them to be phased out entirely. MailOnline.

It is expected to be decommissioned by early April, making it easier for families to travel during the Easter holidays.

Free Testing Will Be Canceled From April 1


Free testing will be canceled from April 11 credit

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