James O'Brien 10am - 1pm
'It got me': The agony of having Christmas Day ruined already from self-isolation
15 December 2021, 13:54 | Updated: 15 December 2021, 14:23
Brits who test positive for Covid from today face seeing their festive plans ruined with the misery of being unable to meet friends and family for Christmas.
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Self isolation requirements mean anyone beginning a 10-day quarantine today will not get out before December 25.
The pain was all too clear in one Twitter user's post, who said she had received positive lateral flows and would have to shut away over the festive period.
"Trying to get to Christmas without having to isolate and… it got me," said a Year Three teacher in the North East, along with a pained emoji.
She showed pictures of her test cassettes each containing a line next to the "T".
Trying to get to Christmas without having to isolate and… it got me😣 pic.twitter.com/UE6X7WYlvY— Miss Maddison (@maddisonteacher) December 15, 2021
The risk appears all the more greater as experts believe Omicron is capable of higher levels of transmission. Health Secretary Sajid Javid told MPs that "no variant of Covid-19 has spread this fast".
Covid rules say people must self-isolate from either the day their symptoms started or the day they carried out a test, if they do not have symptoms.
Effectively, anyone who develops a new continuous cough, has a high temperature or a loss or change in their sense of smell faces having to quarantine for Christmas, assuming they later test positive.
FFS tested positive for COVID from test yesterday will now have to self isolate till Christmas,no symptoms as yet.— Colin Gordon (@ColinGo98822615) December 15, 2021
Anyone using a lateral flow that comes back positive will take a PCR test to confirm if they have been infected.
However, getting tests has been easier said than done this week.
The Government announced vaccinated adults, children or exempt people don't have to isolate if they come into contact with a case or live with someone who gets Covid.
However, they have been advised to take lateral flow tests every day for a week – which appears to have triggered a big rush for the devices, with the NHS website unable to send any out on Monday and Tuesday for most people.
Things did not improve much more on Wednesday, as the vaccine booking service – the route by which people can secure a booster jab – kept people waiting while it cleared queues of more than 10,000.