July 30, 2020 / 9:12 AM / 6 days ago

UK extends COVID-19 self-isolation to 10 days from 7

A vending machine that sells protective masks is seen in a shopping centre, following the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Ilford, London, Britain July 29, 2020. REUTERS/Hannah McKay

LONDON (Reuters) - Anyone who tests positive or shows symptoms of COVID-19 in Britain will have to self-isolate for 10 days instead of the previous seven, based on a low but tangible possibility that people could remain infectious for longer.

“In symptomatic people COVID-19 is most infectious just before, and for the first few days after symptoms begin,” the UK chief medical officers said in a statement on Thursday.

“Evidence, although still limited, has strengthened and shows that people with COVID-19 who are mildly ill and are recovering have a low but real possibility of infectiousness between 7 and 9 days after illness onset.”

The government said the change in the rule would come into force immediately.

Reporting by Paul Sandle; editing by Kate Holton and Estelle Shirbon

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