Covid 19

We know that for people that we support this is a worrying time and we are working hard to do everything we can to provide the support that is needed.

We are changing how we work so that we can carry on supporting you, but in a different way, because your safety is our priority.

Our team are still available by phone and email if you need anything.

Please follow us on social media which we will be updating regularly and will be posting lots of information

What is Coronavirus (Covid-19)?

COVID-19 is a new illness. It is caused by a virus called Coronavirus.

People who are ill with the virus may:

  • have a cough
  • have a high temperature
  • find it harder to breathe 

Most people who have the virus feel unwell but do not need to go to hospital.

People who have Coronavirus are usually better after 14 days.

What to do if you think you have Coronavirus

The most common symptoms of coronavirus are:

  • the symptoms of the virus
  • recently been to a country where lots of people have the virus
  • been close to someone who has been told they have the virus.

Do not go to your doctors if you think you have Coronavirus.

Do contact NHS 111 straight away. This will tell you what you need to do next.

You can do this online by visiting the NHS 111 online service.

They may tell you to stay and home and not be near other people for several days. This is called self-isolating.

When to self-isolate

If you or someone you live with has a high temperature or a cough you should stay at home.

If you live on your own, you need to self-isolate for 7 days (which is the same as 1 week).

If you live with friends and/or family you need to stay at home for 14 days (which is the same as 2 weeks).

If possible, you should not go out even to buy food or other essentials, other than exercise, and in that case at a safe distance from others. The 14-day period starts from the day the first person in your house became ill.

You should not have visitors to your home, such as friends or family.  If you want to speak to someone you should use the phone or social media.  If you receive essential care at home that will carry on but they will take extra precautions.

What you can do to help yourself get better

Drink water to keep yourself hydrated; you should drink enough during the day so your urine (pee) is a pale clear colour.

You can use over-the-counter medications, such as paracetamol, to help with some of your symptoms. Use these according to the instructions on the packet or label and do not exceed the recommended dose.

If you or your family need to seek medical advice

If your illness, or your family member’s illness, is getting worse you should get doctor’s advice.  If it’s not an emergency, contact NHS 111 online. If you have no internet access, you should call NHS 111.

If it is an emergency and you need to call an ambulance, dial 999 and let them know that you or your relative have coronavirus symptoms.

All routine medical and dental appointments should usually be cancelled whilst you and the family are staying at home. If you are concerned or have been asked to attend in person within the period you are home isolating, talk to your medical contact first (for example, your GP, local hospital or outpatient service), using the number they have provided.

How to help stop Coronavirus spreading

It is important that we all do our best to stop the virus spreading.

The best way to do this is:

  • to cover your mouth and nose with a tissuewhen you cough or sneeze
  • to put any tissues you use in a bin
  • cough or sneeze into your sleeve instead of your hand, if you don’t have a tissue
  • try not to touch your eyes, nose and mouthwith your hands.

It is really important that you wash your hands carefully and regularly. You should do this after coughing or sneezing and before eating any food.

You should always wash your hands when you get home or into work.

The Government has also made some new guidelines to help stop Coronavirus from spreading. 

They have suggested that:

  • if you do not need to travel to work then you should try and stay at home
  • if you can work from home then you should do this.

Advice on hand washing

Doctors and nurses have told us that when washing your hands you should follow these steps:

  1. Wet your hands under warm running water
  2. Apply a small amount of soap
  3. Rub your hands together and make sure that the soap and water cover all over your hands
  4. Carefully wash your palms, the backs of your hands, your fingertips, thumbs, your wrists and nails
  5. Rinse your hands under running water
  6. Dry your hands thoroughly.

Sharing a home or looking after someone with COVID -19

Ideally you should try to make sure that you are not sharing with people who have COVID-19 but this is not always possible.  People might still need support with many things.

If you do need to share a home with someone with COVID-19 you should make sure that shared spaces are cleaned and there are lots of things you can do to help, including;

  • Try to not to spend any time with vulnerable family members
  • Keep shared spaces well ventilated
  • Keep 3 steps away from vulnerable people
  • Use separate towels and a separate bathroom if possible
  • If you share a bathroom, it is important to clean them every time you use them
  • Use separate cutlery and plates and wash them in a dishwasher if you can
  • All shared spaces should be cleaned with detergent and disinfectant.
  • Detergent/disinfectant should be used to decontaminate all surfaces in the room/area the person has been self-isolating in, including all places that are touched most often such as door handles, tables, grab-rails and bathrooms.
  • You will need to try to clean soft furnishings with detergent or disinfectant if it is safe to do so  

If you need to look after somebody with Covid-19

People being cared for with suspected and confirmed COVID-19 should be cared for in a single room, and if possible, in a room with en-suite bathrooms or have a bathroom they can use that nobody else does.
• Wherever possible, it is important that all care for the person should be carried out within their room
• The person’s room door(s) should be kept closed wherever possible, and safe to do so.
o Where this is unsafe, or not possible, we should ensure that wherever possible the person’s bed is moved away from the door to try and achieve a 2 metres distance to the open door.

• To reduce the number of people in contact with the person it is important that only those people who need to support the person should enter the room, and if possible when wearing extra personal protective equipment like gloves
• While providing care to a person it is important to keep the comings and goings from the persons room to a minimum
• Advise suggests that if possible, and not too cold, the room should be well ventilated and having a window open to keep fresh air moving through is helpful.

Washing hand with soap and water is essential before and after all contact with the person being cared for, removal of protective clothing and cleaning of equipment and the environment.

Laundry

To reduce the chance of spreading the virus through the air, do not shake dirty laundry.  You should wash items following the manufacturer’s instructions. All dirty laundry can be washed in the same load.

If you do not have a washing machine, wait a further 72 hours after your 7-day (for individual isolation) or 14-day isolation period (for households) has ended when you can then take the laundry to a public launderette.

Ending self-isolation and household-isolation

Self-isolation

You may end your self-isolation after 7 days from the day when you first became ill

Household isolation

If living with others, then all household members who remain well may end household-isolation after 14 days. The 14-day period starts from the day illness began in the first person to become ill. Fourteen days is the incubation period for coronavirus; people who remain well after 14 days are unlikely to be infectious.

After 7 days, if the first person to become ill feels better and no longer has a high temperature, they can return to their normal routine. If any other family members become unwell during the 14-day household-isolation period, they should follow the same advice – that is, after 7 days of their symptoms starting, if they feel better and no longer have a high temperature, they can also return to their normal routine.

Should a household member develop coronavirus symptoms late in the 14-day household-isolation period (for example, on day 13 or day 14) the isolation period does not need to be extended, but the person with the new symptoms has to stay at home for 7 days. The 14-day household-isolation period will have greatly reduced the overall amount of infection the rest of the household could pass on, and it is not necessary to restart 14 days of isolation for the whole household. This will have provided a high level of community protection. Further isolation of members of this household will provide very little additional community protection.

At the end of the 14-day period, any family member who has not become unwell can leave household isolation.

The cough may persist for several weeks in some people, despite the coronavirus infection having cleared. A persistent cough alone does not mean someone must continue to self-isolate for more than 7 days.