COVID-19 symptom guidance updated to cover loss of smell or taste

COVID-19 symptom guidance updated to cover loss of smell or taste

May 18, 2020

A joint statement from the four Chief Medical Officers (CMOs) for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland announced that from today a new symptom has been added to guidance advising the public on when to self-isolate. As of today, any individuals who develop a new continuous cough, or fever, or experiences a loss of smell or taste (Anosmia), should self-isolate immediately. 

In their joint statement the CMOs state ‘Anosmia is the loss of or a change in your normal sense of smell. It can also affect your sense of taste as the two are closely linked. 

Their statement goes on to share ‘we have been closely monitoring the emerging data and evidence on COVID-19 and, after thorough consideration, we are now confident enough to recommend this new measure. 

In line with current guidelines, all the members of the individual’s household should also self-isolate for 14 days unless the symptomatic individual receives a negative test result.  

The updated advice has come following published evidence in Natural Medicine that anosmia may be a more accurate symptom predictor of COVID-19 infection than the symptom of fever. 

Read the joint statement 

 



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