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COVID-19: management of staff and exposed patients and residents in health and social care settings



Guidance on the management of staff, patients and residents who have been exposed to COVID-19.


Published 4 April 2020

Last updated19 July 2021 — See all updates



If there is a likelihood that staff absence creates a significant risk to the health or safety of patients or service users, health and social care staff whose activities are critical to the on-going provision of care and who have been identified as a contact of a case of COVID-19 may be able to attend work rather than self-isolate if they are fully vaccinated (more than 14 days after the second dose).


Staff members should only attend work after having a negative PCR test and daily negative LFD antigen tests. This must only occur in exceptional circumstances and where additional safety measures can be upheld.


The decision is subject to a risk assessment by an individual(s) nominated by the organisation’s management, and authorisation by the organisation’s local Director of Infection Prevention and Control and/or the lead professional for health protection and/or Director of Public Health relevant to the organisation.



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