More of the east and south east of England will enter the Tier 4 lockdown on Boxing Day, health and care secretary Matt Hancock has announced.
The Health Secretary revealed the stricter measures today at a Downing Street press conference as he said the virus was “spreading at a dangerous rate”.
To support staff, care homes will receive two rapid tests a week, in addition to the weekly PCR test. In the event of a positive test in a tier 4 care home, all staff will additionally be tested daily for seven days.
Care homes in all tiers will be able to access a £149 million grant to support the testing. Care homes in tiers 1-3 will be able to use this funding to meet additional costs associated with visits, supporting residents to see friends and family.
Areas to enter Tier 4 include: Sussex, Oxfordshire, Suffolk, Norfolk, Cambridgeshire, parts of Essex currently not covered, Waverley in Surrey and Hampshire, with the exception of the New Forest.
Care homes are reminded that close-contact indoor visits are not allowed in Tier 4. Visits to care homes can take place with arrangements such as substantial screens, visiting pods, or behind windows.
Tier status can be checked online.