Helpful Summary of the Christmas and New Year Covid Rules

A summary of the current rules, the below guide has been received from NYCC

North Yorkshire Coronavirus Data

At 13 December, there have been 14,562 positive tests since 3 March, with 1,203 new cases reported in the past two weeks. Over the past week, the average number of new cases is approximately 79 per day. Work continues to ensure effective monitoring of all areas, with support for incidents being provided across a range of settings, which are reviewed daily.

Further information on North Yorkshire data provided at county, district and local area level can be found here:

Change in Self-Isolation Guidance

On 14 December, the isolation period for people who have tested positive for COVID-19 and their close contacts changed from 14 to 10 days. Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms or a positive test result must stay at home for the full isolation period. This is because they could pass it on to others, even if they don’t have symptoms.

Your isolation period includes the day your symptoms started (or the day your test was taken if you do not have symptoms), and the next 10 full days. This means that if, for example, your symptoms started at any time on the 15th of the month (or if you did not have symptoms but your first positive COVID-19 test was taken on the 15th), your isolation period ends at 23:59 hours on the 25th. You must complete your full isolation period. Your isolation period starts immediately from when your symptoms started, or, if you do not have any symptoms, from when your first test was taken.

You can return to your normal routine and stop self-isolating after 10 full days if your symptoms have gone, or if the only symptoms you have are a cough or anosmia, which can last for several weeks. If you still have a high temperature after 10 days or are otherwise unwell, stay at home and seek medical advice.

If you are isolating because of a positive test result, but did not have any symptoms, and you develop COVID-19 symptoms within your isolation period, start a new 10-day isolation period from the day your symptoms began. Most people with COVID-19 will experience a mild illness. Seek prompt medical attention if your illness or the illness of someone in your household is worsening.

While you are isolating, stay as far away from other members of your household as possible, especially if they are clinically extremely vulnerable. Wherever possible, avoid using shared spaces such as kitchens and other living areas while others are present and take your meals back to your room to eat. Wear a face covering or a surgical mask when spending time in shared areas inside your home.

As a reminder, the most important symptoms of COVID-19 are recent onset of any of the following:

  • a new continuous cough
  • a high temperature
  • a loss of, or change in, your normal sense of taste or smell (anosmia)

Staff and exposed patients or residents in health and social care settings

Staff who have tested positive for COVID-19 in the community or at work should self-isolate for at least 10 days after illness onset. If, however, they have been admitted to hospital they should be isolated in hospital (or continue to self-isolate on discharge) for 14 days from their first positive test result. For the same reasons, the 14-day isolation rule also applies to other (non-staff) COVID-19 cases admitted to hospital.

Asymptomatic staff (i.e. usually not hospitalised) who have tested positive for COVID-19 should self-isolate for 10 days following their first positive test.

Residents who are known to have been exposed to a confirmed COVID-19 patient (an exposure similar to a household setting), should be isolated or cohorted only with residents who do not have COVID-19 symptoms but also have been exposed to COVID-19 residents, until 14 days after last exposure.

If you are a close contact of someone with COVID-19

A contact is a person who has been close to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 with a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test. You can be a contact anytime from two days before the person who tested positive developed their symptoms, and up to 10 days after, as this is when they can pass the infection on to others. A contact can be:

  • anyone who lives in the same household as someone with COVID-19 symptoms or who has tested positive for COVID-19
  • anyone who has had any of the following types of contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 with a PCR test:
  • face-to-face contact, including being coughed on or having a face-to-face conversation within one metre
  • skin-to-skin physical contact for any length of time
  • been within one metre for one minute or longer without face-to-face contact
  • sexual contacts
  • been within two metres of someone for more than 15 minutes (either as a one-off contact, or added up together over one day)
  • travelled in the same vehicle or a plane

If you are a contact of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 you will be notified by the NHS Test and Trace service via text message, email or phone and should follow this guidance closely.

If you are a close contact, you must stay at home and self-isolate. Do not go to work, school, or public areas and do not use public transport or taxis. Your isolation period includes the day the first person in your household’s symptoms started (or the day their test was taken if they did not have symptoms) and the next 10 full days. This means that if, for example, your 10-day isolation period starts on the 15th of the month, your isolation period ends at 23:59 hours on the 25th and then you can return to your normal routine.

If you do not have symptoms of COVID-19 yourself, you do not need a test. Only arrange a test if you develop COVID-19 symptoms or if you are asked to do so as part of a wider testing scheme. If for any reason you have a negative test result during your 10-day isolation period, you must continue to self-isolate. Even if you don’t have symptoms, you could still pass the infection on to others. Stay at home for the full 10 days to avoid putting others at risk.

If you develop symptoms while you are isolating, arrange to have a COVID-19 PCR test. If your test result is positive, follow the advice for people with COVID-19 to stay at home and start a further full 10-day isolation period. This begins when your symptoms started, regardless of where you are in your original 10-day isolation period. This means that your total isolation period will be longer than 10 days.

If you are identified as a contact and asked to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace, including by the NHS COVID-19 app, you may be entitled to a payment of £500 from your local authority under the Test and Trace Support Payment scheme.

Failure to comply with self-isolation may result in a fine, starting from £1,000. Parents or guardians are legally responsible for ensuring that anyone under 18 self-isolates if they test positive for COVID-19 and are contacted by NHS Test and Trace and told to self-isolate.