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Covid: What could Boris Johnson’s ‘living with the virus’ plan look like?

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oris Johnson is set to unveil his plan for “living with Covid” next week – bringing an end to restrictions that the country has lived with for two years.

In the biggest step yet towards a “post-pandemic” life, rules mandating people in the UK to isolate when they have the virus are expected to be scrapped as well as free testing.

The Standard looks at all the rule changes the prime minister could unveil on Monday.

Self-isolation rules axed

Under Mr Johnson’s “living with Covid” plan, people who test positive for the virus will no longer legally need to self-isolate.

It represents a decisive move in the history of the pandemic, allowing Britons to mix with others and spread the virus freely.

Mr Johnson said he hoped the changes could come into effect as soon as February 24, as long as “positive trends” in the data continue.

Under the current rules, anyone who tests positive for Covid must isolate for at least five full days – rising to ten if they continue to receive a positive result on lateral flow tests.

Downing Street said: “We’re not saying isolation is pointless. We’d expect anyone with an infectious disease to take steps not to spread that disease further – a colleague at work with flu, for example.”

However, it could pose ethical problems for companies and unions as employees would technically be allowed to attend work despite being infectious.

Free tests scrapped

The prime minister is expected to confirm the end of free access to Covid tests, despite the plans causing a backlash.

Mr Johnson is considering plans to change the law so that everyone – including vulnerable people, children and healthcare workers –will have to pay to access tests for the virus, according to LBC.

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