A change to Covid testing rules could negatively impact the pockets of Brits to the tune of £100. The government will announce its Living Safely With Covid plan next week when the Commons returns from recess
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A significant rule change in the coming weeks could impact on the pocket of Brits as they learn to deal with the coronavirus becoming endemic.
The government hopes to announce that an end to all Covid restrictions, including the mandatory period required for self-isolating, will be in place by the end of February.
Parliament is currently on recess, but the Prime Minister is due to announce his plan for living with Covid when MPs return next week on Monday, February 21.
Another change, this time to testing, is also likely to be announced.
Boris Johnson looks set to unveil the change that could impact Brits up to £100 at a time, as the UK looks to learn to live with the virus.
So what is the change and why will Brits be charged?
Will PCR tests be scrapped?
Free PCR tests now look set to be scrapped and could cost people £100 if they want to get their hands on one.
The Living Safely With Covid plan is due to be published on February 21 and may well include the plans to scrap free PCRs.
PCR tests have been vital to determine if a person has Covid, as they are more accurate than lateral flow tests (LFTs) and have become a requirement for travel to and from certain countries around the world at various points during the pandemic.
The hope is that LFTs becoming more widely available will mean PCRs will not be so heavily relied upon.
Why are free PCR tests set to be scrapped?
The Treasury will be hoping to save billions by announcing the end to free tests.
Covid figures have taken a downward trend recently. The seven-day average has been falling since January 21.
However, the UK Health and Security Agency (UKHSA) wants the government to keep providing free tests until at least the start of April and some experts are also concerned that the changes will be “taken as a signal” by people with Covid that they should continue. to mix in public setting, despite having clear symptoms of the virus.
Will I have to pay for a PCR if I am vulnerable?
It is believed that PCR tests will remain free for those listed as vulnerable, as well as those in hospitals and in high-risk settings.
Sources told The Guardian that this will also include the 1.3 million eligible for antivirals if they contract Covid.
The government will outline the full details in the upcoming plan, but say there are no intentions to completely scrap community testing.
A spokesperson added: “Everyone can continue to get free tests and we are continuing to encourage people to use rapid tests when they need them.
“Record numbers of tests are being delivered to pharmacies, homes and those who need them. Testing continues to play an important role in helping people live their day-to-day lives, keep businesses running and keep young people in school.”