Information & Guidance

Covid-19 update

The Government has provided a road map for England as we ease out of lockdown. Specific guidelines will be shared as we pass through each phase of the lockdown. The current guidance for individuals who are considered to be clinically extreme is to continue to shield.


Who should be shielding?

Health experts have identified specific medical conditions as clinically extremely vulnerable, and places some people at greatest risk of severe illness from COVID-19. These include people:

  • with cancers of the blood or bone marrow such as leukaemia, lymphoma or myeloma who are at any stage of treatment
  • who have had bone marrow or stem cell transplants in the last six months, or who are still taking immunosuppression drugs.

Being on the shielding list, means you'll get relevant letters from the government, which act as proof for your employer that you are clinically extremely vulnerable, and can't go to work in some very high-risk areas. You should also have been prioritised for receiving your COVID-19 vaccination.

If you have not received any letters or notifications about the vaccine, please contact your GP to ensure their records are accurate.

How can I stay safe?

Remember the main ways to avoid catching coronavirus:

  • avoid close contact with other people
  • keep your hands clean
  • don't touch your face with your hands.

These are still the main ways to avoid catching coronavirus.

If those you live with also do these things when they are out, they will reduce their risk of catching coronavirus. Other practical things that can reduce the risk of spreading coronavirus at home include:

  • avoiding close contact with other members of your household where possible, even if it's not possible all the time.
  • cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched objects and surfaces in the home, such as door handles.
  • Keeping shared spaces well ventilated - open windows and allow air to flow through.
  • using separate towels
  • using separate cutlery, dishcloths and tea towels

You might also want to ask your family to get washed and changed when they get home from being out. We don't know how much this can reduce the risk, but it may help.

Should I be going to work?

  • Everyone clinically extremely vulnerable should still be supported to work from home wherever possible, even if this involves changing your role. You can also ask to be furloughed based on your vulnerability.
  • If you can't work from home or be furloughed, the advice about whether to attend work varies around the UK, but most clinically extremely vulnerable people are currently advised not to go out to work.

What is going to happen next?

For people in England, Wales and Norther Ireland shielding advice is due to pause on 1st April 2021. Until then, clinically extremely vulnerable people are being advised not to go out to work, shops or pharmacies, but you can go outside for exercise.

In Scotland, most of the country is in lockdown (Level 4), except for some islands that remain at Level 3. In Level 4 areas, clinically extremely vulnerable people are being advised not to go out to work until 26th April 2021. You will be sent a 'fit note' by the Chief Medical Officer to show your employer.

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