Contact Tracing Changes 19th July 2021


What are the changes to contact tracing from 19 July 2021?


  • From 19 July, education and childcare settings (i.e. schools, colleges and nurseries) will no longer carry out routine contact tracing. From this point onwards, close contacts will be identified and contacted by NHS Test and Trace.


  • As with positive cases in any other setting, NHS Test and Trace will speak with the individual who has tested positive –or, depending on their age, their parent or legal guardian –to identify close contacts.


  • Contacts within schools, colleges and nurseries will only be traced by NHS Test and Trace where the positive case specifically identifies the individual as having close, prolonged contact. NHS contact tracers will provide support on how to identify a close contact. The setting will not routinely be contacted to provide details of close contacts.


  • Schools, colleges and nurseries may be contacted in exceptional cases to help with identifying close contacts where there is a local outbreak, as currently happens in managing other infectious diseases.


  • Symptomatic individuals, and those who record a positive test, will still need to isolate in line with current guidance.



What are the changes to self-isolation from 16 August2021?

Self-isolation rules for close contacts in all settings are changing on 16 August.

  • From 16 August close contacts who are fully vaccinated or those under 18 will not need to self-isolate
  • All close contacts will be advised to take a PCR test –you should encourage anyone identified as a close contact to do this
  • Individuals identified as close contacts will not need to self-isolate while they are awaiting the results of their test
  • If the PCR result is positive, the individual must isolate and NHS Test and Trace will work with them to identify any close contacts