Care home residents can receive unlimited visitors from Monday (January 31) as restrictions to tackle the Omicron variant of coronavirus are eased.

Self-isolation periods will also be reduced from 14 days to 10 for those who test positive, with further reductions if they test negative on days five and six.

Additionally, there will be changes to the testing regime for care workers from February 16, with pre-shift lateral flow tests replacing the current system involving weekly asymptomatic PCR tests.

Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid said: “I know how vital companionship is to those living in care homes and the positive difference visits make, which is why we continued to allow three named visitors and an essential care giver under Plan B measures.

“Thanks to the progress we have made, I am delighted that care home restrictions can now be eased further allowing residents to see more of their loved ones.”

This news comes as face coverings are no longer required by law in any setting from today (Thursday, January 27), while a legal requirement for NHS Covid passes for entry to venues such as nightclubs has been scrapped.

Guidance for masks now will be "a matter if personal judgment", Prime Minister Boris Johnson's spokesperson said.