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COVID-19: Home visits will not “completely return to normal” after final stage of easing, Minister says | UK News

Home visits will not “fully return to normal” after the final step in England’s COVID restrictions roadmap, a minister said.

Social Affairs Minister Helen Whately said the country was “on track” to ease restrictions on July 19 as per the government’s plan, but warned that “some precautions” would still be needed around nursing homes .

His comments precede a Prime Minister’s press conference in Downing Street Boris Johnson at 5 pm where he must explain how the government will “restore people’s freedoms”.

COVID updates live from UK and around the world

New legislation due to be introduced in October will mean vaccinations will be mandatory for nursing home staff

Its update is expected to include details on nursing home visits.

Speaking to Sky News, Ms Whately said: “I don’t think the visits will be completely back to normal. There are still some precautions that need to be taken.

“It’s step by step, to get things as close to normal as possible, while protecting those most at risk from COVID.”

Later in the morning broadcast round, Ms Whately hinted that the requirement for face masks in health and care facilities will continue.

Wearing face masks is expected to become a “personal choice” in most settings.

Currently, residents of nursing homes in England can receive visits from five named relatives or friends, but only two people can visit at a time or per day.

Hand holding in the care home.  Photo: AP
There have been more than 40,000 deaths involving COVID in nursing homes in England. Photo: AP

Residents can leave care homes to see their loved ones, which can include overnight stays, without having to isolate themselves upon their return.

However, they must self-isolate for 14 days after returning from an overnight hospital.

Last month, then-Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced that coronavirus vaccines would be made mandatory for …

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This notice was published: 2021-07-05 10:46:00

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