Around 170,000 more people in Wales will now be able to claim £500 if they are asked to self-isolate.
The Self-Isolation Support Payment is being made available to people with an income of less than £500 a week and those on basic statutory sick pay, who would miss out financially if asked to self-isolate.
Previously, the payment was only available to people claiming Universal Credit, or other specified benefits, if they were unable to work from home.
Parents can also claim the payment if their child is asked to self-isolate by their school.
The scheme has been extended until June this year, with the possibility of it being extended until October, Welsh Government minister Julie James confirmed.
Ms James said: “Self-isolation is key if we are to stop the spread of coronavirus and with more community testing programmes planned in the coming months it is vital we enhance the scheme to help more people self-isolate and receive the financial support they need.”
The minister thanked all local authorities in Wales for their “continued support in delivering this scheme” and said nearly 8,500 payments have been made so far.
The scheme was first announced by First Minister Mark Drakeford in a Welsh Government coronavirus briefing in October.
However, Plaid Cymru’s Shadow Health Minister, Rhun ap Iorwerth, has called on Welsh Government to increase the payment to £800.
Mr ap Iorwerth said: “Fear of financial hardship is one of the barriers to effective self-isolation. If support isn’t sufficient, and isn’t reaching the right people, our efforts to tackle the pandemic suffer.
“Raising the low income self-isolation payment to £800 will help more people stay at home at a time they most need to isolate. This will be an important step in helping stop the virus taking hold again once we ease out of lockdown.”
To apply for the payment, visit obv.sr/sisp
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