On Monday 23 March, the Prime Minister launched the country into lockdown with clear advice for the general public to:
- Stay at home
- Only go outside for food, health reasons (to get medicine) or work (where this absolutely cannot be done from home)
- Stay 2 metres (6 ft) away from other people
- Wash your hands as soon as you get home
You can spread the virus even if you don't have symptoms.
When we reduce our day-today contact with other people, we reduce the spread of the infection. The new measures announced by the Prime Minister are:
- Requiring people to stay at home except for very limited purposes
- Closing non-essential shops and community spaces
- Stopping all gatherings of more than two people in public.
Suspect You Have the Virus?
Do not leave home if you or someone you live with has either:
- a fever or high temperature (of 37.8 degrees centigrade or higher)
- a new, continuous cough
Information about Self-Isolation
You do not need to contact a health professional unless your symptoms become serious. In which case, use the NHS online service to get advice. Only phone NHS111 if you cannot get online.
There is information here in an easy read format about the Coronavirus
Easy read guidance
Recovery From the Virus
After 7 days of self-isolation people who feel better and no longer have a high temperature can return to their normal activities. If you show no signs of improvement, contact NHS 111 online. A persistent cough alone after seven days does not mean someone should stay at home.
In a Household With Someone With Symptoms
If someone in your household develops the symptoms of coronavirus, you need to stay at home and self-isolate for 14 days, the period of time coronavirus can be in your system (incubating) and can make you ill. You can spread the virus even if you don't have symptoms so it is vital that you stay in doors.
There are local neighbourhood arrangements that you can access to get food and supplies dropped at your door. People need to stay away and not come not your home.
How Can You Stop the Spread of Infection?
Increase Hand Washing
Encourage family and friends to wash their hands with soap and hot water after contact with surfaces in public places such as rails and handles, door knobs, doorbells, light switches, lift buttons, cash point buttons, etc.
Do not undertaking any unnecessary travel and reduce social contact with others staying 2 m/6 ft away. This is especially important with people over 70 and those with existing health issues. Follow Public Health England's guidance here
Catch It, Bin It, Kill It
- Basic hygiene advice is a key message to all. Always use tissues and dispose of them in a bin.
- Sneeze into the inner crook of your arm if no tissues are available.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
- Try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell
There is Self Isolation guidance here about measures to take during this period to ensure you do not pass on any infection to people you live with.
There is Advice for Others in the Household that live with you or who have contact with you. This includes information about getting deliveries, not sharing towels, bed linen, crockery and other steps to reduce cross-infection.
It can be a worrying time when someone is asked to self isolate. You must not visit but you can support the individuals through emails and texts.