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  • Writer's pictureHealthwatch Portsmouth

Updated Guidance for the Clinically Extremely Vulnerable

On 31 October, the Prime Minister announced new national restrictions to help control the spread of COVID-19. In addition to this the Government is issuing new guidance to clinically extremely vulnerable people. We are sharing the letter here which is being sent to people who have been identified as clinically extremely vulnerable who are at a higher risk of becoming very unwell if you catch COVID-19. The letter contains important advice on how to protect themselves and how to access further support. The new advice details further precautions those in this group can take on top of the tougher national measures being introduced. Socialising: stay at home as much as possible, except to go outdoors to exercise or attend health appointments. People can exercise with those they live with or in their support bubble. Work: if people cannot work from home, they should not attend work. They may be eligible for Statutory Sick Pay, Employment and Support Allowance, Universal Credit or the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme during this period of national measures. School: evidence has shown there is a very low risk of children becoming very unwell from COVID-19, most children originally on the shielded patient list no longer need to be and therefore can still attend school. If they are unsure, parents should contact their child’s usual GP or hospital clinician to check whether they should still be considered clinically extremely vulnerable. If a GP or clinician has advised that a child should remain on the shielded patient list, they are advised not to attend school. Children who live with someone who is clinically extremely vulnerable, but aren’t themselves, should still attend school. Going outside: avoid all non-essential travel – they should continue to travel to hospital and GP appointments unless told otherwise by their doctor. They are strongly advised not to go to any shops or to pharmacies. The government will also be providing over £32 million to upper tier councils in England to support the clinically extremely vulnerable over the next month. It will be used to provide support, such as access to food deliveries and signposting to local support of befriending services, to the most at risk; enabling them to stay at home as much as possible over this short period. Coronavirus cases are rising rapidly across the whole of the UK, and that is why, from 5 November until 2 December, the Government has taken the following action: 1. Requiring people to stay at home, except for specific purposes. 2. Preventing gathering with people you do not live with, except for specific purposes. 3. Closing certain businesses and venues, like hospitality and non-essential retail. The new national restrictions are rules that apply to everyone and which everyone must follow. The full details of these rules can be found online at View the letter now There is new guidance issued on the admission and care of residents in care homes as well as how visiting by family members and friends of residents in care homes can be made possible. We are finding out if there any local restrictions that Portsmouth City Council’s Director of Public Health has imposed in addition to the national guidelines. For dental surgeries in Portsmouth we have received confirmation today (6.11.20) from the City Council that all dental surgeries are expected to remain open during this second national lockdown period. Please inform us if you find this is not the case. Helpful resources Admission and care of people in care homes New guidance to support safe care home visits during lockdown Shielding guidance

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