UK to pay low income earners £13 per day to self-isolate

 The United Kingdom has announced plans to pay £13 per day to low income earners who test positive for COVID-19 and require self-isolation.

According to a statement issued on Thursday, persons who fall within that bracket and are unable to work during the period of their isolation will receive £130.

The fund will cover a 10-day period, while other members of the affected person’s household, who require self-isolation for two weeks, will be paid £182.

The decision will take effect on September 1, and will cover people who live in areas where COVID-19 infection rate is high.

“Starting with a trial in Blackburn with Darwen, Pendle and Oldham to ensure the process works, eligible individuals who test positive with the virus will receive £130 for their 10-day period of self-isolation. Other members of their household, who have to self-isolate for 14 days, will be entitled to a payment of £182,” the statement read.

“Non-household contacts advised to self-isolate through NHS Test and Trace will also be entitled to a payment of up to £182, tailored to the individual length of their isolation period.

“It is designed to support people who are unable to work from home while self-isolating, either after testing positive, or after being identified by NHS Test and Trace as living in the same household as – or coming into contact with – someone who has tested positive. It will be available to people currently receiving either Universal Credit or Working Tax Credit.”

Speaking on the development, Matt Hancock, UK health secretary, was quoted as saying that Britons have shown commitment to reducing the spread of the virus and the “new payment scheme will help people on low incomes and who are unable to work from home to continue playing their part in the national fight against this virus”.

According to the statement, the payment will be made within 48 hours within which the infected patient is expected to provide evidence of qualification for the fund, such as “a notification from NHS Test and Trace and a bank statement”.

“The local authority can also check the NHS Test and Trace system to confirm the individual has been asked to self-isolate, if the individual is unable to provide this information. The local authority will put in place checks to prevent fraud and ensure compliance through welfare check-ins, phone calls and employment checks,” it read.

The system will be reviewed and, if successful, it will be extended to other areas with high rates of coronavirus infections.

Also, the self-isolation period for infected persons will count from the day when they first experience symptoms.

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