Advice on Covid-19 for Scotland

Updated Public Health Guidance for IPC - 1 June 2022

Read updated Public Health Guidance for IPC in Scotland here.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): extended use of face masks and face coverings in hospitals, primary care and wider community healthcare

COVID-19 Guidance updated 1 April 2022

Please note that this page is a live document and all information and links are accurate as of the date of publication.

ABDO strongly recommends all registrants should follow Government guidance on vaccination in line with public health evidence.

Mandatory vaccination only applies to staff regulated by the Care Quality Commission.  It does not apply to staff regulated by the GOC.

In Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland it is strongly recommended all health care professionals are fully vaccinated against coronavirus (COVID-19) unless medically exempt. Please see further details below.

Recent and upcoming changes can be found here. The left-hand side column lists each country.

Please see the updated summary of changes made to guidance throughout the UK:


Healthcare Workers to revert back to twice weekly Lateral Flow Device (LFD) testing: Revert back to twice weekly HCW testing – 22.02.15

If you test positive on an LFD test, you are not required to complete a confirmatory PCR test and should isolate in line with national guidance.

If you have tested positive for COVID-19, you can leave self-isolation after 7 full days, provided you have no symptoms and have two negative LFD tests 24 hours apart on days 6 and 7.

If you are identified as a close contact of a positive case you should complete the relevant COVID-19 test according to the national guidance.

Close contacts of confirmed cases, who are fully vaccinated, have a negative LFD test and no symptoms, can return to work and must complete and receive a negative LFD test result for seven days from return.

Public-facing Healthcare staff are now strongly encouraged to undertake a LFD test every day before they go to work as part of the testing mitigations for reducing asymptomatic COVID-19 transmission.

Further information can be found here.

Self-isolation support

You may be able to get a payment of £500 if you are on a low income and meet the eligibility criteria:

  • you’re employed or self-employed.
  • you, or a child you’re the parent or guardian of, has tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19), or been told you or the child are a close contact by NHS Test and Trace.
  • you cannot work from home and will lose income by self-isolating or staying at home to care for the child.
  • you’re not exempt from self-isolating.

Scotland Self-Isolation Support Grant (£500) –

Clarification to community optometry sector on the position regarding PPE for healthcare staff and face coverings for patients

22 April 2022

Following the latest changes in COVID-19 measures that came into effect in Scotland on Monday 18 April 2022, and which are set out in more detail on the Scottish Government website, the Scottish Government would like to clarify to the community optometry sector that:

  • There has been no change in the PPE requirements for healthcare staff, and as such you should continue to follow the Winter (21/22) Respiratory Infections in Health and Care Settings IPC Addendum Guidance and in particular section 5.15 of that guidance which sets out PPE measures. This applies to relevant staff working in community optometry practices and domiciliary care providers who visit care homes etc.
  • There is no longer a legal requirement for patients/visitors to wear a face covering (unless exempt). Instead, the position as set out on the Scottish Government website is that it is strongly recommended that such individuals continue to wear a face covering. Where a patient/visitor declines to wear a face covering, staff should apply judgement and consider if other Infection Prevention and Control measures, such as hand hygiene, respiratory etiquette and ventilation, are sufficient depending on the patient/visitor’s condition and the care pathway.

Steps should be taken to communicate in an accessible way to patients/visitors (such as a written notice on the practice’s door/window and website, and verbally if/when speaking to the person over the phone) that it is strongly recommended that they wear a face covering (unless exempt) when they visit the practice.

The Scottish Government has made digital assets (including posters which can be printed off) available for use by community optometry practices in helping to promote this message to the public. These are accessible online here. In particular, the ‘Healthcare Toolkit – COVID sense – UPDATED – April 2022’ slide pack may be of help.

As always, you can continue to find links to all key COVID-19 information (and other general information) on the Eyes.Scot website.

De-escalation of COVID-19 infection prevention and control (IPC) measures in Health and Social Care settings to alleviate system pressures. Read here.

1 April 2022

Latest memorandum from the Dentistry and Optometry Division

Read the latest memorandum from the Dentistry and Optometry Division, Directorate of Primary Care, Scottish Government, issued 9 August 2021.

This memorandum advises on the following:

  • An update on physical distancing requirements in health and social care settings;
  • Revised Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) guidance for community health and care settings – environmental cleaning and waste disposal;
  • The allowance values, criteria and claims process for Continuing Education and Training (CET) undertaken by optometrists and ophthalmic medical practitioners (OMPs) in 2020;
  • The pre-registration trainee supervisor grant amount and claims process for trainee optometrists taken on, on or after 1 April 2021;
  • The public beta launch of the Eyes.Scot website;
  • The provision of a poster for use by all community optometry practices providing General Ophthalmic Services (GOS) in Scotland.

Letter from the Dentistry and Optometry Division, 9 March 2021

Read the latest letter from the Dentistry and Optometry Division, Directorate of Primary Care, Scottish Government, issued 9 March 2021.

This letter advises on the following:

  • Update on the transition to the pull model of PPE ordering – NHS Borders, NHS Lanarkshire, NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde;
  • Update on financial support for practice premises, mobile practices and peripatetic services provision.

NHS payment disbursement to persons working within an independent service provider

Read the latest letter from the Dentistry and Optometry Division, Directorate of Primary Care, Scottish Government, issued 8 February 2021.

This letter advises NHS Boards and Practitioner Services of the arrangements for the NHS payment disbursement to persons working within an independent service provider setting, announced on 30 November 2020.

The payment is available to community optometrists and their optometry practice teams, including administrative staff and practice managers. Read the letter in full to find out more about eligibility and process to claim.

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