On behalf of Warrington, our Mayor Cllr Maureen Creaghan, sends sincere condolences to Her Majesty The Queen and the Royal Family, following the death of HRH The Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Philip. Read the Mayor's full statement.
Help and support for vulnerable people - Coronavirus
From 1 April, people who are clinically extremely vulnerable (CEV) are no longer being advised to shield.
Safe and well
If you are clinically extremely vulnerable, you could be at higher risk of severe illness from coronavirus.
We are working in partnership with Warrington Voluntary Action and other local organisations to deliver a 'Safe and Well' service to support you. We can advise and provide practical support on any of the issues outlined below.
How to access support
It is important that if you have trusted family, friends or neighbours who you are able to call on for help, and you should approach them if you need support.
However, if you do not have access to trusted help, you can access our safe and well service. The service can help with things like:
- if you are struggling to source food or collect prescriptions
- if you are feeling worried or isolated and need someone to talk to
- if you are struggling to cope with other practicalities to keep yourself safe and well
If you need help, advice or support, please let us know.
Or, you can call us on 01925 443322.
There is also support available through local volunteers - find out more about Warrington Voluntary Action's Good Neighbour scheme.
Or, email the team at email@example.com or call 01925 246881.
Although the advice to shield has been paused, clinically extremely vulnerable people must continue to follow the national rules and restrictions that are in place for everyone.
The government is also advising clinically extremely vulnerable people to continue to take extra precautions to protect themselves. You are advised to follow the practical steps described below to minimise your risk of exposure to the virus.
Everyone on the Shielded Patient List should already have been offered a COVID-19 vaccine. If you have not yet received your first dose, please contact your GP practice. If you have received your first dose, you should ensure you take up your second dose of the vaccine when it is offered to you. Having two doses should further increase your level of protection.
For children aged 12 to 15 years, vaccination may be appropriate for those with severe neuro-disabilities. This option should be discussed between parents/guardians and the child’s clinician or GP.
You should continue to take the extra precautions to help protect yourself and others.
You should continue to maintain social distancing when both indoors and outdoors. However, you do not need to socially distance from members of your household or support bubble.
You should wash your hands regularly and avoid touching your face.
Continue to minimise the number of social interactions that you have, while also observing the rules on meeting people you do not live with. The fewer social interactions you have, the lower your risk of catching COVID-19. Your risk of catching COVID-19 is also lower if you meet with others outdoors rather than indoors.
When it is allowed to meet people from outside your household or support bubble indoors, keep the area well ventilated with fresh air, for example by opening a window.
Everyone is currently advised to work from home where possible.
If you cannot work from home, is is no longer being advised that you do not attend the workplace. Your employer is required to take steps to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace and should be able to explain to you the measures they have put in place to keep you safe at work. Some employers may introduce regular testing of employees as part of these measures. You may also want to consider how you get to and from work including if it is possible to avoid using public transport during rush hour.
The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (furlough) has been extended until 30 September. You may continue to be eligible throughout this period, even when shielding is paused, providing your employer agrees. The Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) has also been extended until 30 September.
From 1 April, you will no longer be eligible for Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) or Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) on the basis of being advised to shield, given the lifting of shielding measures nationally. You may be eligible for SSP or ESA if you are sick or incapable of work, either due to coronavirus or other health reasons, subject to meeting the eligibility conditions.
It is important that children attend school for their education, wellbeing, mental health and long-term development. Clinically extremely vulnerable pupils and students should return to their school or other educational setting from 1 April. This includes early years provision, wraparound childcare and applicable out-of-school settings. Children who live in a household with someone who is clinically extremely vulnerable are not advised to shield and should have returned to school or college from 8 March.
If you are concerned about your child’s attendance, you should speak to your child’s school about your concerns and discuss the protective measures that have been put in place to reduce the risk. You should also discuss other measures that can be put in place to ensure your children can regularly attend school.
If you need to use public transport, you must wear a face covering unless you are exempt. Consider travelling outside peak hours to reduce the number of people you come into contact with.
If you do travel, walk or cycle if you can. For longer journeys, or if you are unable to walk or cycle, try to minimise the number of people you come into close contact with.
You may want to avoid car sharing with people from outside your household or support bubble, and ensure that you use a face covering when using taxis.
While you are not advised to avoid going to the shops, you may wish to continue using online delivery for food and essential shopping, or to ask family and friends for help. If you do go out to the shops or pharmacy, consider going at quieter times of the day. You must wear a face covering in all shops unless you are exempt.
If you have already registered for priority access to supermarket delivery slots using the national shielding support website by 31 March, then the participating supermarkets will continue to offer you priority access until 21 June. After this date individuals can continue to book deliveries from a supermarket.
You might still want to ask friends, family or volunteers to collect medicines for you. Local volunteers or the NHS Volunteer Responders programme are still available to help support those who need it. Volunteers can collect and deliver shopping, medication and other essential supplies.
Visit Warrington Voluntary Action's website to arrange support from a local volunteer through the Good Neighbours Scheme.
Care and support
You should continue to seek support from the NHS for your existing health conditions. You can access a range of NHS services from home, including ordering repeat prescriptions or contacting your health professional through an online consultation.
You can still receive informal care at home from people within your support bubble, and you can still receive care at home from professional social care and medical professionals.
A vaccine is likely to make an important contribution towards protecting you from COVID-19. Clinically extremely vulnerable people will get priority access to the vaccine before the general population and in line with the agreed national priority list.
You should have been invited for your first dose of the vaccine. Even if you have had both doses of the vaccine, you should continue to follow the shielding advice until further notice.
How to access further support
You can also access the government's support service to get priority supermarket deliveries, if you haven't done so already.
You can register yourself, or on behalf of someone else.
It is important that you continue to receive the care and support you need to help you stay safe and well.
Any carers or visitors who support you, or a child or young person in your care, with everyday needs, can continue to visit. They should follow social distancing guidance where close or personal contact is not required.
They should do so unless they have any of the symptoms of coronavirus (a new continuous cough, a high temperature, or a loss of, or change in, their normal sense of taste or smell).
If you are in the clinically extremely vulnerable group, you should continue to access the NHS services you need during this time. This may be delivered in a different way or in a different place than you are used to, for example via an online consultation, but if you do need to go to hospital or attend another health facility for planned care, extra planning and protection will be put in place.
You should also continue to access support from the NHS Volunteer Responders if required, including help with shopping and medicines delivery, a regular, friendly phone call, and transport to and from medical appointments.
Visit the NHS Volunteer Responders website, or call 0808 196 3646, between 8am and 8pm to arrange support.
It is completely normal during these uncertain and unusual times to feel anxious or feel low.
Follow the advice that works for you in the guidance on how to look after your mental health and wellbeing during coronavirus.
The Every Mind Matters website offers advice and practical steps that you can take to support your wellbeing and manage your mental health during this pandemic.
Warrington’s mental health awareness website – happyoksad.warrington.gov.uk – has a directory of online, local and national support services available to help improve your mood, and details of what to do if someone is having a mental health crisis.
If you, or someone you know, is experiencing a mental health crisis, call Warrington's freephone helpline on 0800 051 1508. Lines are open 24 hours per day, seven days a week.
There is financial support available for those who are self-isolating.
Recognising that self-isolation is one of the most powerful tools for controlling the transmission of coronavirus, a Test and Trace Support payment of £500 will ensure that those on low incomes are able to self-isolate with financial assistance.
Find out more about the payment, whether you're eligible, and how to apply on our self isolation webpage.