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Staying alert to control the virus

The Government has updated its advice regarding how to stop the spread of coronavirus (Updated 30/07/20).


On 30 July, it was announced that the self-isolation period has been extended to 10 days for those in the community who have coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms or a positive test result.

Read more here.


Here are the current key messages:

  • stay at home as much as possible
  • work from home if you can
  • limit contact with other people
  • keep your distance from people not in your household (2 metres apart where possible)
  • wash your hands regularly

Do not leave home if you or anyone in your household has symptoms.

 Read about what you can and can’t do

  • From 13/06/20, if you live in a single adult household – either you live alone or are a single parent living only with dependent children – you are allowed to form a support bubble. Read more about what this means here.
  • As of 24/07/20, face coverings are mandatory:
    • in shops, supermarkets, shopping centres
    • in enclosed transport hubs
    • on public transport
    • for all hospital visitors and those attending outpatients appointments.  

Read the Government guidance here

  • Follow current national guidance: take particular care to minimise contact with those outside of your household if you have a long-term condition, are pregnant, or aged 70 or over.
  • Self-isolate if you or anyone in your household has symptoms.

Advice on Shielding

If you’re clinically extremely vulnerable, you’re strongly advised to stay at home as much as possible and keep interactions outside to a minimum. This is called ‘shielding’, and the government is currently advising people to shield until 31 July and is regularly monitoring this position.

Since 06/07/20, those shielding have been able to spend time outdoors in a group of up to 6 people including those outside of their household, while maintaining social distancing. More details available here.

What will change from 1 August

From 1 August, the government will pause shielding unless the transmission of COVID-19 in the community starts to rise significantly.

This means:

  • the government will no longer be advising you to shield
  • the support from the National Shielding Service of free food parcels, medicine deliveries and care will stop
  • NHS Volunteer Responders will carry on delivering the food you buy, prescriptions and essential items to you if you need it
  • you will still be eligible for priority supermarket slots (if you have registered by 17 July)

You may still be at risk of severe illness if you catch coronavirus, so stay at home as much as you can and continue to take precautions when you do go out. You can do this by washing your hands regularly, avoiding touching your face and keeping 2 metres away from people outside of your household or bubble wherever possible.


For more information:

Read the government guidance on Shielding and protecting people who are clinically extremely vulnerableStaying Alert and Safe (social Distancing) and Staying safe outside your house.

Read the Government’s updated FAQs on what you can and can’t do

Read NHS advice about your condition and coronavirus and pregnancy and coronavirus

For information in the form of British Sign Language videos click here

For easy to read information visit Mencaps Website

Coronavirus information in other languages 

If you think you might have coronavirus


  • A high temperature
  • A new, continuous cough
  • Loss or change in sense of smell or taste

What to do if you have these symptoms

Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital. You should stay at home and self isolate, only leaving the house to get a coronavirus test (read more about testing below).

Only call 111 if you cannot get help online.

You do not need to contact 111 to tell them you’re staying at home. Read the NHS advice about staying at home.

Use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service if:

  • You feel you cannot cope with your symptoms at home
  • Your condition gets worse
  • Your symptoms do not get better after 7 days

Use the 111 coronavirus service

Click here for the NHS 111 BSL service


How to self isolate if you or someone in your house has coronavirus

If you have symptoms of coronavirus you should stay home and self isolate. What this means is you should not leave your house, even to do shopping, to avoid spreading the virus. If you live alone, you should stay at home for seven days from when your symptoms started. If you live with others, then you must stay at home for seven days from when your symptoms started. However, everyone else in the household who is well must stay at home and not leave for 14 days.

For more information about when to self isolate and what this means for families visit the Government website.

Find out more


Testing for COVID-19 

(Correct as of 05/06/2020)

If you have symptoms of coronavirus you can get a throat and nose swab test.  Testing is most effective within 3 days of symptoms developing.

Anyone in England with Coronavirus symptoms can get a test. Register at the testing portal by clicking here.

If you are, or live with an essential worker you can also book a test through the website

Read the Government Guidance on coronavirus testing

Read about what your test result means here

The NHS Test and Trace Service:

  • ensures that anyone who develops symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) can quickly be tested to find out if they have the virus, and also includes targeted asymptomatic testing of NHS and social care staff and care home residents
  • helps trace close recent contacts of anyone who tests positive for coronavirus and, if necessary, notifies them that they must self-isolate at home to help stop the spread of the virus

Read more about the Service, how it works and The Coronavirus App here


How to avoid catching or spreading germs


  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze.
  • Put used tissues in the bin straight away.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water often, and for 20 seconds – use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available.
  • Try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell.
  • Wear a face covering in places where social distancing may not be possible. 


  • Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean.



Coronavirus (COVID-19) can make anyone seriously ill. But for some people, the risk is higher.

There are 2 levels of higher risk:

  • high risk (clinically extremely vulnerable)
  • moderate risk (clinically vulnerable)

Read more here, for the full list of people who are considered high risk visit the Government website. If you think you’re extremely vulnerable but the NHS hasn’t contacted you, contact your GP or hospital clinician.

Advice for people who are extremely vulnerable

The Government has contacted around 1.5 million NHS patients by letter, with guidance and information on ‘shielding’. If you’re at high risk of getting seriously ill from coronavirus, there are extra things you should do to avoid catching it, this is called ‘shielding’. Shielding measures are now beginning to ease…

  • From 01/06/20 people who are “extremely vulnerable”, and are currently shielding, remain vulnerable and were told they should continue to take precautions but can now leave their home if they wish, as long as they are able to maintain strict social distancing. If you choose to spend time outdoors, this can be with members of your own household. If you live alone, you can spend time outdoors with one person from another household.
  • As we move into the next phase of COVID-19, GPs and hospital clinicians now have the authority to review patients and add or remove them from the clinically vulnerable (requiring shielding) list. People who are removed from this list  will still be able to access support such as from NHS Volunteers. If you are unsure whether or not you should be on the list, or have received a text message about this and/or are unsure please contact your GP or hospital clinician.
  • From 6 July those shielding will be able to spend time outdoors in a group of up to 6 people including those outside of their household, while maintaining social distancing.
  • From 1 August, the shielding advice will relax further, allowing those shielding to do even more, such as visit shops and places of worship, and return to work provided they take particular care to maintain social distancing and minimise contact with others outside their household.

Read more on what shielding means

Read the guidance for those who are extremely vulnerable

Follow this link to register and tell the government whether or not you need support

Local support for those who are vulnerable

A Warwickshire hotline has been set up so people in this group can request information and support such as access to food and additional supplies during these difficult times.

It is crucial that this support is targeted to those in most need – those who are unable to secure help through their existing support and care networks

If you have been identified as extremely vulnerable and need support, you can call 0800 4081447

The hotline is open:

  • Monday – Thursday 9.00am to 17.00pm
  • Friday – 9.00am to 4.30pm
  • Saturday – Sunday  9.00am to 3.00pm

Find more local information and advice about sheilding here


Warwickshire Carer Wellbeing Service

Provided by Carers Trust Heart of England, this Service provides emotional and practical support to help people care for someone and maintain their health and wellbeing.

• A wellbeing check can be done for carers to identify any needs they may have and also provide signposting to other agencies to help support the person they care for.
• A community-focused service helps the person with a caring responsibility have access to local agencies who can help with shopping, collecting prescriptions and other practical help.
• If there is an emergency and you must leave your loved one the CRESS service may be able to help. The helpline can provide a listening ear to talk through problems and provide reassurance.

Helpline: 02476 632972 (opt 2)
Opening times: Monday to Friday 9am to 8pm and Saturday 9am to 1pm.

There are various other support services for carers: Coronavirus Carers Pack FINAL (1).


Looking after your mental health

The current Coronavirus (COVID19) pandemic may cause you to feel worried, anxious, or scared. Read our seven steps to looking after your wellbeing while staying informed. 

You can read the latest government guidance on mental health and wellbeing (for an easy read version click here and for advice for parents and carers supporting children and young people click here)

Public Health at Warwickshire County Council have provided information about what mental health provisions are available during the Covid-19 outbreak.


Stay in, Work Out: Looking after your physical health

Sport England have launched a campaign giving tips, advice and guidance on how to keep or get active in and around your home. #StayInWorkOut


Information for Children

Childrens Coronavirus Fact Sheet


End of Life and Bereavement

Healthwatch England explain here why it’s important to have a plan in place, should you or a loved one become critically ill with coronavirus.

Take a look at Healthwatch England’s advice article on the organisations and groups that can support you if you’re grieving.


Last updated: 19/05/20

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