Changes to help with Covid isolation payment

A person being tested for Covid-19

A person being tested for Covid-19 - Credit: PA/Wire

Councils across Essex have worked together to make it easier for people who have to self-isolate to get a £500 support payment if they need it.

Essex County Council and the 12 borough, city and district councils in Essex have agreed common criteria and simplified the process. 

People must, by law, self-isolate if they are told to do so by NHS Test and Trace or Essex and Southend contact tracing.

This includes those who are told to self-isolate because they test positive for Covid-19 are a parent/guardian with a self-isolating child, live with someone else who tests positive, or have contact with someone in their childcare or support bubble who tests positive.

Employed people who earn less than £500 per week net, have household savings below £16,000, are not on benefits and meet other existing criteria are now eligible. This includes self-employed and zero-hours contract workers.

Dr Mike Gogarty, Director of Public Health for Essex, said: “Thanks to everything the people of Essex have done Covid-19 case rates have gone from among the highest in England to about a third of the national average.

"But we can’t let down our guard. I urge people to get tested regularly, whether they have symptoms or not, and to self-isolate if they or someone they’re in contact with tests positive. 

Most Read

“If you carry on going out to work because you’re worried about losing money, you could be spreading the virus. These changes to the discretionary test and trace support scheme will help more people to self-isolate.”