Care home residents will be allowed unlimited visitors as of next week, the health bosses have said.

Starting Monday, January 31, there will no longer be restrictions on the number of visitors to care homes in England.

The Department of Health's announcement comes as restrictions to tackle the Omicron variant are being eased in England, as the country returns to Plan A.

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

There will also 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.

“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.”