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These are the changes to Omicron Covid restrictions as England moves back to Plan A



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Some of England's Plan B Omicron measures came to an end this week while others will stop next week.

That's because the Prime Minister told the House of Commons that booster jabs have contributed to the move, and that scientists believed the Omicron wave has now peaked.

He added that the government had taken a “different path” to much of Europe and the “data shows that, time and again, this government got the toughest decisions right.”

Boris Johnson speaking in the House of Commons on Wednesday, January 19. Stock picture
Boris Johnson speaking in the House of Commons on Wednesday, January 19. Stock picture

Here's everything you need to know as England prepares to return to coronavirus Plan A:

What's being abandoned first?

As of yesterday, January 20, secondary school pupils no longer have to wear face coverings in classrooms when it comes to face-to-face teaching sessions.

Not everyone sees this as good news, with some schools asking pupils to continue wearing masks as they believe the move has come too soon.

Students and staff will still need to use masks in communal areas until Thursday, January 27, a rule which also applies to staff in communal areas of primary schools.

In workplaces and public places

From today, January 21, the advice on working from home will be dropped and people should discuss their return to offices with employers.

Covid passes, which include proof of full vaccination or a recent negative test, will also be dropped from Thursday, January 27.

They will be no longer be compulsory for entry to nightclubs and large venues. However, organisations could still opt to use the Covid pass if they wish.

Face masks will no longer be mandatory in indoor public spaces. Stock picture
Face masks will no longer be mandatory in indoor public spaces. Stock picture

Will I still need to use a facemask?

From next week face masks will no longer be a legal requirement. As of Thursday, January 27, face coverings will no longer be mandatory in indoor public spaces, such as shops and on public transport - albeit some places may still request them such as Transport for London which has said they will still wish travellers to use them on trains, buses and tubes.

People are still being advised to wear masks in enclosed or crowded spaces and when meeting strangers.

Is this the end of Covid restrictions?

Despite the above being lifted, the legal requirement to self-isolate after a positive result remains for now. But Boris Johnson has been clear that when the final Covid restrictions expire at the end of March it is his intention not to renew them and if possible, a vote on this could be brought forward sooner.



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