Government and NHS guidance
This advice was uploaded to www.philipdunne.com on 18/03/20. Please check government sources to confirm most up to date advice, available at https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/coronavirus-covid-19-list-of-guidance
Information on local help for those affected by self-isolation in South Shropshire is available here, or please call my office on 01584 872187.
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office advise against all but essential travel overseas. If you are overseas and require travel advice, call 020 7008 1500 or contact my office to request support.
If you can help support a neighbour who is self-isolating, please print the form below and drop it under their door.
Guidance for staying at home
What you need to know
· if you live alone and you have symptoms of coronavirus illness (COVID-19), however mild, stay at home for 7 days from when your symptoms started. (See ending isolation section below for more information)
· if you live with others and you or one of them have symptoms of coronavirus, then all household members must stay at home and not leave the house for 14 days. The 14-day period starts from the day when the first person in the house became ill
· it is likely that people living within a household will infect each other or be infected already. Staying at home for 14 days will greatly reduce the overall amount of infection the household could pass on to others in the community
· for anyone in the household who starts displaying symptoms, they need to stay at home for 7 days from when the symptoms appeared, regardless of what day they are on in the original 14 day isolation period. (See ending isolation section below for more information
· if you can, move any vulnerable individuals (such as the elderly and those with underlying health conditions) out of your home, to stay with friends or family for the duration of the home isolation period
· if you cannot move vulnerable people out of your home, stay away from them as much as possible
· if you have coronavirus symptoms:
· do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital
· you do not need to contact 111 to tell them you’re staying at home
· testing for coronavirus is not needed if you’re staying at home
· plan ahead and ask others for help to ensure that you can successfully stay at home and consider what can be done for vulnerable people in the household
· ask your employer, friends and family to help you to get the things you need to stay at home
· wash your hands regularly for 20 seconds, each time using soap and water, or use hand sanitiser
· if you feel you cannot cope with your symptoms at home, or your condition gets worse, or your symptoms do not get better after 7 days, then use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service. If you do not have internet access, call NHS 111. For a medical emergency dial 999
Guidance on social distancing and for vulnerable people
Those who are at increased risk of severe illness from Covid-19 should be particularly stringent in following social distancing measures:
· aged 70 or older (regardless of medical conditions)
· under 70 with an underlying health condition listed below (ie anyone instructed to get a flu jab as an adult each year on medical grounds):
. chronic (long-term) respiratory diseases, such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), emphysema or bronchitis
. chronic heart disease, such as heart failure
. chronic kidney disease
. chronic liver disease, such as hepatitis
. chronic neurological conditions, such as Parkinson’s disease, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), a learning disability or cerebral palsy
. diabetes o problems with your spleen – for example, sickle cell disease or if you have had your spleen removed
. a weakened immune system as the result of conditions such as HIV and AIDS, or medicines such as steroid tablets or chemotherapy
. being seriously overweight (a BMI of 40 or above)
· those who are pregnant
Note: there are some clinical conditions which put people at even higher risk of severe illness from COVID19. If you are in this category, next week the NHS in England will directly contact you with advice the more stringent measures you should take in order to keep yourself and others safe. For now, you should rigorously follow the social distancing advice in full, outlined below.
People falling into this group are those who may be at particular risk due to complex health problems such as:
· People who have received an organ transplant and remain on ongoing immunosuppression medication
· People with cancer who are undergoing active chemotherapy or radiotherapy
· People with cancers of the blood or bone marrow such as leukaemia who are at any stage of treatment
· People with severe chest conditions such as cystic fibrosis or severe asthma (requiring hospital admissions or courses of steroid tablets)
· People with severe diseases of body systems, such as severe kidney disease (dialysis)
What is social distancing:
· Avoid contact with someone who is displaying symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19). These symptoms include high temperature and/or new and continuous cough;
· Avoid non-essential use of public transport, varying your travel times to avoid rush hour, when possible; Work from home, where possible. Your employer should support you to do this. Please refer to employer guidance for more information;
· Avoid large gatherings, and gatherings in smaller public spaces such as pubs, cinemas, restaurants, theatres, bars, clubs
· Avoid gatherings with friends and family. Keep in touch using remote technology such as phone, internet, and social media.
· Use telephone or online services to contact your GP or other essential services.
For those who are over 70, have an underlying health condition or are pregnant, we strongly advise you to follow the above measures as much as you can, and to significantly limit your face-to-face interaction with friends and family if possible. This advice is likely to be in place for some weeks.
Advice for informal carers:
If you are caring for someone who is vulnerable, there are some simple steps that you can take to protect them and to reduce their risk at the current time. Ensure you follow advice on good hygiene such as:
· Wash your hands on arrival and often, using soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitiser.
· 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 immediately and wash your hands afterwards.
· Do not visit if you are unwell and make alternative arrangements for their care.
· Provide information on who they should call if they feel unwell, how to use NHS111 online coronavirus service and leave the number for NHS 111 prominently displayed.
· Find out about different sources of support that could be used and access further advice on creating a contingency plan is available from Carers UK
· Look after your own well-being and physical health during this time.
There are general principles you can follow to help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, including:
· washing your hands more often - with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use a hand sanitiser when you get home or into work, when you blow your nose, sneeze or cough, eat or handle food
· avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
· avoid close contact with people who have symptoms
· cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in a bin and wash your hands
· clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces in the home
For more information click here