UK Scraps Pre-Departure COVID-19 Test Rule for Int’l Arrivals

Story Highlights
  • PM Boris Johnson announced the removal of pre-departure tests addressing the PMQs in the House of Commons.
  • Lateral Flow test is advised to passengers on day two of their arrival in UK.
  • 194,747 new infections were reported by the UK Health Agency on Wednesday.

United Kingdom: The UK govt on Wednesday informed to scrap the compulsory COVID-19 tests required by overseas travellers no earlier than 48 hours. The rule would be effective from Friday, confirmed PM Boris Johnson. Additionally, those testing positive from Jan 11 onwards would no longer need to take the RT-PCR tests to confirm their infection.

Addressing the year’s first Prime Minister’s Questions (PMQs) session in the House of Commons, he asserted the impact of Omicron that coerced the authorities to ramp up the testing capacity. Easing the restrictions, Johnson said, “Instead, people can take a cheaper lateral flow test on day two of their entry into the UK.” Lateral Flow Devices (LFDs) are made available for free by the National Health Service (NHS) for home testing and are believed to be a reliable indicator of an individual’s COVID infectiousness level, requiring them to self-isolate following a positive test. They can end their isolation after a week if they test negative on day six and seven consecutively, or carry on isolating for 10 days.

UK health agency on Wednesday reported an addition of 194,747 new infections breaching another record set on Tuesday.  Currently, more than 20 hospital trusts have been reporting critical situations.

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