Public consent for test and trace in England at risk, says Jeremy Hunt

Scrap self-isolation for people fully vaccinated, former health secretary urges amid ‘pingdemic’ chaos

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The government “risks losing social consent” for its test-and-trace programme if it does not immediately allow fully vaccinated people to avoid isolation, the former health secretary Jeremy Hunt has said. His comments came as it was revealed that a record 618,903 people in England and Wales were sent self-isolation alerts in the week to 15 July.

Conservative MPs were in open revolt on Thursday as reports and pictures emerged of empty supermarket shelves, blamed on the hundreds of thousands of people “pinged” or contacted by NHS test and trace and told to stay at home because of the rapidly rising number of Covid cases, which are at their highest level since January.

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