Covid update – latest Scottish Government advice (29 April 2022)

Published on 29 April 2022

In this message: • Updates to stay at home guidance • What to do if you feel ill • Testing for general population to end • Reporting sickness absence

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Dear colleagues,

The Scottish Government has today confirmed that from Sunday 1 May public health advice will change to a ‘stay at home’ message, replacing self-isolation for people who have symptoms or have tested positive for Covid-19.

People who have symptoms of Covid-19 and who have a fever or are too unwell to carry out normal activities will be asked to ‘stay at home’ while they are unwell or have a fever.  They will no longer be advised to take a PCR test.

The changes, part of the Test and Protect Transition Plan which was published last month, will also see all contact tracing end.

General testing to end
As previously announced, testing for the general population will end on 30 April with test sites closing at that point too.  However, testing will remain available to certain groups in order to protect high risk settings, support clinical care and for surveillance purposes. Those groups include health and social care workers, care home and hospital visitors, patient groups eligible for treatment, hospital patients, unpaid carers and people in prison.

Other adults who have symptoms of Covid-19 and other respiratory illnesses and have a high temperature or do not feel well enough to go to work or carry out normal activities, are advised to stay at home until their fever has gone or they feel well enough.

Children and young people aged 18 and under with mild symptoms such as a runny nose, sore throat, or slight cough, who are otherwise well, do not need to stay at home and can continue to attend education settings.

They should only stay at home if they are unwell and have a high temperature. They can go back to school, college or childcare, and resume normal activities when they no longer have a fever and they feel well enough to attend.

Reporting sickness absence
If you do not feel well enough to work you should revert to the procedure of informing your line manager to record absence. There is no need now to complete the University self-reporting form for Covid-19 as we revert to the standard Sickness Absence Policy.

Scottish Government advice is that, from 1 May, Covid-19 symptoms include continuous cough; high temperature, fever or chills; loss of, or change in, your normal sense of taste or smell; shortness of breath; unexplained tiredness, lack of energy; muscle aches or pains; unusual hunger; headaches; sore throat, stuffy or runny nose; and diarrhoea, feeling sick or being sick.

The Protect Scotland app will also be closed down shortly, but users are encouraged to keep the app on their phones in case it is needed again at a future date.

Please remain vigilant
NHS Scotland will also be taken out of emergency footing at the end of Saturday 30 April as Covid-19 cases continue to fall.

However, with continued demands on services across health and social care, there remains a need for caution to protect vital services.

Patients should only attend A&E if their condition is an emergency, to continue to limit the pressure on services.  Patients can contact their GP during the day, local pharmacy or call NHS24 on 111 as an alternative.

You can read the update from the Scottish Government here.

Best wishes,

Dr Jim McGeorge
University Secretary & Chief Operating Officer

Announcement Category Covid, Staff messages