Covid19

NHS Test and Trace

NHS Test and Trace service is now in operation.
You may be contacted by the Service if:
▪️You have tested positive for Coronavirus or
▪️You have been in contact with a person who has tested positive for Coronavirus.

Be aware of scammers taking advantage of the launch of the service.

For accurate detailed information about the service go to
https://www.nhs.uk/…/coronavirus-c…/testing-for-coronavirus/

The NHS Test and Trace service will contact you by email, text or phone.
Text messages will come from the NHS. Calls will come from 0300 0135000.
Children under 18 will be contacted by phone wherever possible and asked for their parent or guardian’s permission to continue the call.

If you have tested positive for Coronavirus:

You’ll be asked to sign in to the NHS Test and Trace contact tracing website at https://contact-tracing.phe.gov.uk.

On the contact tracing website, you’ll be asked for information including:
▪️your name, date of birth and postcode
▪️if you live with other people
▪️any places you’ve been recently, such as a workplace or school
▪️names and contact details of any people you were in close contact with in the 48 hours before your symptoms started (if you know these details)
If you cannot use the contact tracing website, you’ll be asked for this information over the phone.

The NHS Test and Trace service will not:

▪️ask for bank details or payments
▪️ask for details of any other accounts, such as social media
▪️ask you to set up a password or PIN number over the phone
▪️ask you to call a premium rate number, such as those starting 09 or 087

Do not click links in texts or emails
Do not press 1 if you are telephoned

Wearing a face covering does not protect you.

The UK Government is now recommending the use of face coverings in enclosed spaces where social distances might not be maintained.

If you can, wear a face covering in an enclosed space where social distancing isn’t possible and where you will come into contact with people you do not normally meet. This is most relevant for short periods indoors in crowded areas, for example, on public transport or in some shops.

Evidence suggests that wearing a face covering does not protect you.

However, if you are infected but have not yet developed symptoms, it may provide some protection for others you come into close contact with.

Face coverings do not replace social distancing.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19 (cough and/or high temperature), you and your household must isolate at home: wearing a face covering does not change this.

A face covering is not the same as the surgical masks or respirators used by healthcare and other workers as part of personal protective equipment. These should continue to be reserved for those who need them to protect against risks in their workplace, such as health and care workers, and those in industrial settings, like those exposed to dust hazards.

Face coverings should not be used by children under the age of 2 or those who may find it difficult to manage them correctly. For example, primary age children unassisted, or those with respiratory conditions.

Wearing a face covering

It is important to use face coverings properly and wash your hands before putting them on and taking them off.

A cloth face covering should cover your mouth and nose while allowing you to breathe comfortably. It can be as simple as a scarf or bandana that ties behind the head.

Wash your hands or use hand sanitiser before putting it on and after taking it off and after use. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth at all times and store used face coverings in a plastic bag until you have an opportunity to wash them.

Do not touch the front of the face covering, or the part of the face covering that has been in contact with your mouth and nose. Once removed, make sure you clean any surfaces the face covering has touched.

You should wash a face covering regularly. It can go in with other laundry, using your normal detergent.

When wearing a face covering, take care to tuck away any loose ends.

Home made face coverings

You can make face-coverings at home. The key thing is it should cover the mouth and nose.

Instructions for making face coverings:

Cabinet Office, 11 May 2020
www.gov.uk/government/publications/staying-safe-outside-your-home/staying-safe-outside-your-home
Public Health England, 11 May 2020
www.gov.uk/government/publications/how-to-wear-and-make-a-cloth-face-covering/how-to-wear-and-make-a-cloth-face-covering

Public spaces / outdoor activities / exercise

There will be a limited number of things you can do from Wednesday 13th May that you cannot do now:

  • spend time outdoors – for example sitting and enjoying the fresh air, picnicking, or sunbathing
  • meet one other person from a different household outdoors – following social distancing guidelines
  • exercise outdoors as often as you wish – following social distancing guidelines
  • use outdoor sports courts or facilities, such as a tennis or basketball court, or golf course – with members of your household, or one other person while staying 2 metres apart
  • go to a garden centre

At all times, should continue to observe social distancing guidelines when you are outside your home, including ensuring you are 2 metres away from anyone outside your household. As with before, you cannot:

  • visit friends and family in their homes
  • exercise in an indoor sports court, gym or leisure centre, or go swimming in a public pool
  • use an outdoor gym or playground
  • visit a private or ticketed attraction
  • gather in a group of more than two (excluding members of your own household), except for a few specific exceptions set out in law (for work, funerals, house moves, supporting the vulnerable, in emergencies and to fulfil legal obligations)

If you are showing coronavirus symptoms, or if you or any of your household are self-isolating, you should stay at home – this is critical to staying safe and saving lives.

Hygiene

Everybody should follow basic hygiene measures that help to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and other contagious diseases.

  • wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds,
    particularly
    • after you sneeze or cough
    • when you get home or into work
  • use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
  • cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
  • put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands afterwards
  • do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean

NHS https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

Staying at home

The single most important action we can all take, in fighting coronavirus, is to stay at home in order to protect the NHS and save lives.

When we reduce our day-to-day contact with other people, we will reduce the spread of the infection. That is why the government is now (23 March 2020) introducing three new measures.

  1. Requiring people to stay at home, except for very limited purposes
  2. Closing non-essential shops and community spaces
  3. Stopping all gatherings of more than two people in public

Every citizen must comply with these new measures. The relevant authorities, including the police, will be given the powers to enforce them – including through fines and dispersing gatherings.

These measures are effective immediately. The Government will look again at these measures in three weeks, and relax them if the evidence shows this is possible.

Staying at home

You should only leave the house for one of four reasons:

  • for work, where you cannot work from home
  • going to shops that are permitted to be open – to get things like food and medicine, and to collect goods ordered online or on the phone
  • to exercise or, from Wednesday 13 May, spend time outdoors for recreation
  • any medical need, to donate blood, avoid injury or illness, escape risk of harm, or to provide care or to help a vulnerable person

These four reasons are exceptions – even when doing these activities, you should be minimising time spent outside of the home and ensuring you are 2 metres apart from anyone outside of your household.

These measures must be followed by everyone. Separate advice is available for individuals or households who are isolating, and for the most vulnerable who need to be shielded.

If you work in a critical sector outlined in this guidance, or your child has been identified as vulnerable, you can continue to take your children to school. Where parents do not live in the same household, children under 18 can be moved between their parents’ homes

Delivering these new measures

These measures will reduce our day to day contact with other people. They are a vital part of our efforts to reduce the rate of transmission of coronavirus.

Every citizen is instructed to comply with these new measures.

The Government will therefore be ensuring the police and other relevant authorities have the powers to enforce them, including through fines and dispersing gatherings where people do not comply.

They will initially last for the three weeks from 23 March, at which point the Government will look at them again and relax them if the evidence shows this is possible.

Stay at home advice

Staying at home can help stop coronavirus spreading

You’ll need to stay at home if you have symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) or live with someone who does.

Stay at home if you have either:

  • a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
  • a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
  • a loss of, or change to, your sense of smell or taste

For most people, coronavirus (COVID-19) will be a mild illness. However, if you have any of the symptoms above you must stay at home and arrange to have a test to see if you have COVID-19 – go to testing to arrange.

What do we mean by
possible or confirmed coronavirus infection (COVID-19)?

  • Possible infection is where a person has coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms and is currently awaiting a test result.
  • Confirmed infection is where a person has tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19).

Staying at home means you should:

  • not go to work, school or public areas
  • not use public transport or taxis
  • not have visitors, such as friends and family, in your home
  • not go out to buy food or collect medicine – order them by phone or online, or ask someone else to drop them off at your home

You can use your garden, if you have one. You can also leave the house to exercise – but stay at least 2 metres away from other people.Information:

Main messages

If you have symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19), however mild, OR you have received a positive coronavirus (COVID-19) test result, the clear medical advice is to immediately self-isolate at home for at least 7 days from when your symptoms started. Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital. You should arrange to have a test to see if you have COVID-19 – go to testing to arrange.

Consider alerting the people that you have had close contact within the last 48 hours to let them know you have symptoms of coronavirus COVID-19.

Following a positive test result, you will receive a request by text, email or phone to log into the NHS Test and Trace service website and provide information about recent close contacts

After 7 days, or longer, if you still have symptoms other than cough or loss of sense of smell/taste, you must continue to self-isolate until you feel better.

You do not need to self-isolate if you only have a cough or loss of sense of smell/taste after 7 days, as these symptoms can last for several weeks after the infection has gone. See the ending isolation section below for more information.

If you live with others and you are the first in the household to have symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19), then you must stay at home for at least 7 days. All other household members who remain well must stay at home and not leave the house for 14 days. The 14-day period starts from the day when the first person in the household became ill. See the explanatory diagram.

Staying at home for 14 days will greatly reduce the overall amount of infection that people in your household could pass on to others in the community.

If anyone else in the household starts displaying symptoms, they must stay at home for at least 7 days from when their symptoms appeared, regardless of what day they are on in their original 14-day isolation period. The ending isolation section below has more information, and see the explanatory diagram.

If you have symptoms, you should stay as far away from other members of your household as possible. It is especially important to stay away from anyone who is clinically vulnerable or clinically extremely vulnerable with whom you continue to share a household.

Reduce the spread of infection in your home by washing your hands regularly for 20 seconds using soap and water, or use hand sanitiser, and cover coughs and sneezes.

If you feel you cannot cope with your symptoms at home, or your condition gets worse, or your symptoms do not get better after 7 days, then use the NHS 111 online coronavirus (COVID-19) service. If you do not have internet access, call NHS 111. For a medical emergency dial 999.

If you develop new coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms at any point after ending your first period of isolation (self or household) then you must follow the same guidance on self-isolation again. The section below (After ending self-isolation and/or household-isolation) has further information.

Who is this guidance for?

This guidance is intended for:

  • people with symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) infection, who have received a positive test result
  • people with symptoms that may be caused by coronavirus (COVID-19) who are waiting for a test result, or who have not been tested and do not require hospital treatment, who must remain at home until they are well
  • people living in households with someone who shows symptoms that may be caused by coronavirus (COVID-19).

Will my household be tested if we think we have coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms?

Anyone with symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) must immediately self-isolate and arrange to have a test to see if you have COVID-19 – go to testing to arrange.

If you develop symptoms you may wish to alert the people that you have had close contact with over the last 48 hours to let them know that you might have coronavirus (COVID-19) but are waiting for a test result. At this stage, those people should not self-isolate. Alerting those that you have been in contact with means they can take extra care in practising social distancing and good hand and respiratory hygiene. They can also be more alert to any symptoms they might develop.

People who have tested positive will receive a text, email or phone call requesting that they log into the NHS Test and Trace website to create a confidential account where they can record details about their recent close contacts. If you do not have access to the web, then you will be phoned by a contact tracer working for the NHS Test and Trace service. The information you provide will be handled in strict confidence and will enable the NHS Test and Trace service to contact those people and provide them with advice on whether they should go into self-isolation. This will help stop the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). The people contacted will not be told your identity, but by alerting them when you first develop symptoms, you can help make sure that they are prepared for being contacted by the Test and Trace service.

Why staying at home is very important

It is very important that people with symptoms that may be due to coronavirus (COVID-19) and their household members stay at home. Staying at home will help prevent the spread of the virus to family, friends, the wider community, and particularly those who are clinically extremely vulnerable. Controlling the spread of the virus will help us to protect the NHS and save lives.

If you have symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) and you live alone you must remain at home for at least 7 days after the onset of your symptoms (see ending self-isolation below). This will reduce the risk of you infecting others.

If you or anyone in your household has symptoms that may be caused by coronavirus (COVID-19), then you must avoid contact with other household members as much as possible.

The other members of your household, including those who do not have any symptoms, must stay at home and not leave the house for 14 days. You must not go out even to buy food or other essentials, and any exercise must be taken within your home. This 14-day period starts from the day when the first person in your house became ill. There is more information in the ending self-isolation section below.

Staying at home for 14 days will greatly reduce the overall amount of infection the household could pass on to others in the community.

While you are self-isolating, make sure you do the following things

Stay at home

You and everyone else in your household must remain at home. Do not go to work, school, or public areas, and do not use public transport or taxis.

Nobody should go out even to buy food or other essentials, and any exercise must be taken within your home.

If you require help with buying groceries, other shopping or picking up medication, or walking a dog, you should ask friends or family. Alternatively, you can order your shopping online and medication by phone or online. Delivery drivers should not come into your home, so make sure you ask them to leave items outside for collection.

Further guidance on accessing food and essential supplies is available at Accessing food and essential supplies.

If you are unable to work due to coronavirus (COVID-19), please refer to this guidance from the Department for Work and Pensions to find out about the support that is available to you.

Living with children

We are aware that not all these measures will be possible if you are living with children, but keep following this guidance to the best of your ability.

What we have seen so far is that children with coronavirus (COVID-19) appear to be less severely affected. It is nevertheless important to do your best to ensure that all members of your household follow this guidance.

For those with learning disabilities, autism or serious mental illness

We are aware that not all these measures will be possible if you, or those you are living with, have significant conditions such as learning disabilities, autism or serious mental illness. Please keep following this guidance to the best of your ability, whilst keeping yourself and those close to you safe and well, ideally in line with any existing care plans.

Avoid contact with other members of your household as much as possible

If you have symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19), it is important to reduce the spread of infection to others in your household as much as possible.

You should stay in a well-ventilated room with a window to the outside that can be opened, separate from other people in your home if this is possible. Keep the door closed.

Use a separate bathroom from the rest of the household, if available. If you have to share these facilities, regular cleaning will be required. If a separate bathroom is not available, consider drawing up a bathroom rota for washing or bathing. You should use the facilities last, before thoroughly cleaning the bathroom. You should use separate towels from other household members, both for drying yourself after bathing or showering and for hand hygiene purposes.

You should avoid using shared spaces such as kitchens whilst others are present. Take your meals back to your room to eat. Use a dishwasher (if available) to clean and dry your used crockery and cutlery. If this is not possible, wash them by hand using detergent and warm water and dry them thoroughly, using a separate tea towel.

If you have a clinically vulnerable or clinically extremely vulnerable person living with you

Where possible, arrange for anyone who is clinically vulnerable or clinically extremely vulnerable to move out of your home, to stay with friends or family for the duration of your home isolation period.

If you cannot arrange for vulnerable people to move out of your home, stay away from them as much as possible, following the guidance here. For the clinically extremely vulnerable please follow the Shielding guidance.

Those who are clinically vulnerable or clinically extremely vulnerable should be supported to take precautions to minimise their contact with other people in your household, regardless of whether others have symptoms or not. They should minimise time spent in shared spaces such as kitchens, bathrooms and sitting areas. Any shared spaces should be well ventilated.

If they can, clinically vulnerable or clinically extremely vulnerable people should use a separate bathroom from the rest of the household. If this is not possible, consider drawing up a rota for bathing, with the clinically vulnerable or clinically extremely vulnerable person using the facilities first. They should use separate towels from the rest of the household, both for drying themselves after bathing or showering and when washing their hands.

If they can, clinically vulnerable and clinically extremely vulnerable members of the household should have their meals in their own rooms. If you have one, use a dishwasher to clean and dry the family’s used crockery and cutlery. If this is not possible, wash them using your usual washing up liquid and warm water and dry them thoroughly. If the clinically vulnerable or clinically extremely vulnerable person is using their own utensils, remember to use a separate tea towel for drying these.

We understand that it will be difficult for some people to separate themselves from others at home. You must do your very best to follow this guidance and everyone in your household should regularly wash their hands, avoid touching their face, and clean frequently touched surfaces.

Wash your hands often

Clean your hands frequently by washing them with soap and water for 20 seconds or using hand sanitiser. This will help protect you and the people you live with. This is one of the most effective ways of reducing the risk of passing infection to others.

Cover your coughs and sneezes

Cover your mouth and nose with disposable tissues when you cough or sneeze. If you do not have a tissue, sneeze into the crook of your elbow, not into your hand. Dispose of tissues into a disposable rubbish bag and immediately wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds or use a hand sanitiser.

If you have a carer, they should use disposable tissues to wipe away any mucus or phlegm after you have sneezed or coughed. Then they should wash their hands with soap and water for 20 seconds.

Face coverings

Used correctly, a face covering may help to protect others by reducing the transmission of coronavirus (COVID-19).

If you have possible or confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) and you live with others, consider using a face covering inside your home when spending time in shared parts of the household, in addition to avoiding contact with other members of the household as much as possible. You must still stay at home for at least 7 days from when the symptoms started and wearing a face covering does not replace this.

Further guidance on the use of face coverings is available along with instructions on how to make your own face covering.

Cleaning and disposal of waste

When cleaning you should use your usual household products, like detergents and bleach, as these will be very effective at getting rid of the virus on surfaces. Clean frequently touched surfaces such as door handles, handrails, remote controls and tabletops. This is particularly important if you have a clinically vulnerable or clinically extremely vulnerable person in the house.

Clean a shared bathroom each time you use it, for example, by wiping the surfaces you have touched.

Personal waste (such as used tissues) and disposable cleaning cloths can be stored securely within disposable rubbish bags. These bags should be placed into another bag, tied securely and kept separate from other waste. This should be put aside for at least 72 hours before being put in your usual external household waste bin.

Other household waste can be disposed of as normal.

Laundry

To minimise the possibility of dispersing virus through the air, do not shake dirty laundry.

Wash items in accordance with 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 duration of isolation has ended when you can then take the laundry to a public launderette.

Do not share towels, including hand towels and tea towels.

Do not have visitors in your home

Do not invite or allow social visitors, such as other friends or family, to enter your home. If you want to speak to someone who is not a member of your household, use the phone or social media.

If you or a family member receive essential care in your home, then carers should continue to visit. Carers should follow the relevant guidance to reduce the risk of you passing on the infection.

If you have pets in the household

At present, there is very limited evidence that companion animals or pets such as dogs and cats can be infected with coronavirus (COVID-19).

Coronavirus (COVID-19) in the UK is spread by human to human transmission. There is emerging evidence that some animals can become infected with SARS-CoV-2 (which causes coronavirus (COVID-19)) following close contact with infected humans. At this time, there is no evidence that pets can transmit the disease to humans.

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 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

Seek prompt medical attention if your illness or the illness of someone in your household is worsening. If it’s not an emergency, contact the NHS 111 online coronavirus (COVID-19) service. If you have no internet access, call NHS 111.

If it is a medical emergency and you need to call an ambulance, dial 999 and inform the call handler or operator that you or your relative have coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms.

All routine medical and dental appointments should usually be cancelled while 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, discuss this with your medical contact first (for example, your GP or dentist, local hospital or outpatient service), using the number they have provided.

Looking after your wellbeing while staying at home

We know that staying at home for a prolonged period can be difficult, frustrating and lonely for some people and that you or other household members may feel low. It can be particularly challenging if you don’t have much space or access to a garden.

It’s important to remember to take care of your mind as well as your body and to get support if you need it. Stay in touch with family and friends over the phone or on social media. There are also sources of support and information that can help, such as the Every Mind Matters website.

Think about things you can do during your time at home. People who have stayed at home for a week or more have kept themselves busy with activities such as cooking, reading, online learning and watching films. If you feel well enough you can take part in light exercise within your home.

Many people find it helpful to remind themselves why what they are doing is so important. Hopefully, none of your family will experience anything more than mild symptoms, but some people are badly affected by coronavirus (COVID-19). By staying home, you are helping to protect your friends and family, and other people in your community, as well as making sure the NHS does not get overwhelmed.

There are things that you can do to help make self-isolation easier. These include:

  • planning ahead and thinking about what you will need in order to be able to stay at home for the full duration of isolation
  • talking to your employer, friends and family to ask for their help to access the things you will need while staying at home
  • thinking about and planning how you can get access to food and other supplies, such as medications, that you will need during this period
  • asking friends or family to drop off anything you need or ordering supplies online, but make sure these are left outside your home for you to collect
  • ensuring that you keep in touch with friends and family over the phone or through social media
  • thinking about things you can do during your time at home. People who have successfully completed a period of staying at home have kept themselves busy with activities such as cooking, reading, online learning and watching films
  • planning out the full 14 days, such as on a make-shift calendar, which many people find helpful. You may also find it helpful to plan in advance what you will do if, for example, someone in your household were to feel much worse, such as having difficulties breathing
  • remembering that physical exercise can be good for your wellbeing, when you are feeling better. Look for online classes or courses that can help you take light exercise in your home

If you are breastfeeding while infected

There is currently no evidence to suggest that the virus can be transmitted through breast milk. Infection can be spread to the baby in the same way as to anyone in close contact with you. The current evidence is that children with coronavirus (COVID-19) get much less severe symptoms than adults. The benefits of breastfeeding outweigh any potential risks of transmission of the virus through breast milk or by being in close contact; however, this will be an individual decision and can be discussed with your midwife, health visitor or GP by telephone.

If you or a family member are feeding with formula or expressed milk, you should sterilise the equipment carefully before each use. You should not share bottles or a breast pump with someone else.

You can find more information at the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists website.

Ending self-isolation and household isolation

Ending self-isolation

If you have had symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19), then you may end your self-isolation after 7 days and return to your normal routine if you do not have symptoms other than cough or loss of sense of smell/taste. If you still have a high temperature, keep self-isolating until your temperature returns to normal.

After 7 days, if you just have a cough or anosmia (a loss of, or change in, your sense of taste or smell), you do not need to continue to self-isolate. This is because a cough or anosmia can last for several weeks once the infection has gone. The 7-day period starts from the day when you first became ill.

If you continue to feel unwell and have not already sought medical advice, you should use the NHS 111 online coronavirus (COVID-19) service. If you do not have internet access, call NHS 111. For a medical emergency dial 999.

Ending household isolation

After 7 days, if the first person to become ill feels better and no longer has symptoms other than cough or loss of sense of smell/taste they can return to their normal routine.

If you live with others, then everyone else in the household who remains well should end their isolation after 14 days. This 14-day period starts from the day the first person in the household became ill. People in the household who remain well after 14 days are unlikely to be infectious.

If anyone in the household becomes unwell during the 14-day period, they should arrange to have a test to see if they have COVID-19 – go to testing to arrange. If their test result is positive, they must follow the same advice for people with coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms – that is, after 7 days of their symptoms starting, if they feel better and no longer have symptoms other than cough or loss of sense of smell/taste – they can also return to their normal routine. However, if their test result is negative, they must continue with isolation as part of the household for the full 14 days.

Should someone develop coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms late in the 14-day household isolation period (for example, on day 10 or later) the isolation period for the household does not need to be extended. Only the person with new coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms has to stay at home for at least a further 7 days, and should arrange to have a test to see if they have COVID-19 – go to testing to arrange.

At the end of the 14-day period, anyone in the household who has not become unwell can return to their normal routine.

If any person in the household with coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms has not had any signs of improvement and has not already sought medical advice, they should use the NHS 111 online coronavirus (COVID-19) service. If they do not have internet access, they should call NHS 111. For a medical emergency, they should dial 999.

A cough or anosmia (a loss of, or change, in the sense of taste or smell), may persist for several weeks in some people, despite the infection having cleared. A persistent cough or anosmia does not mean someone must continue to self-isolate for more than 7 days.

After ending self-isolation and/or household isolation

What to do if you have another episode of coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms after the end of your first period of self-isolation or household isolation

If you develop new coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms at any point after ending your first period of staying at home (self-isolation or household isolation) then you must follow the same guidance on self-isolation again.

This means you must stay at home for at least 7 days from when your symptoms started if you live alone and arrange to have a test. If you live in a household, you must stay at home for at least 7 days from when your symptoms started, arrange a test for yourself, and all other household members must stay at home for 14 days.

This will help to ensure that you are continuing to protect others within your household and in your community by minimising the amount of infection that is passed on.

If you previously tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) and have another episode of symptoms, do you need to self-isolate again?

If you have tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19), you will probably have developed some immunity to the disease. But it cannot be guaranteed that will happen in all cases, nor exactly for how long that will last.

If you have previously tested positive but develop symptoms again, you must self-isolate for at least 7 days from onset of symptoms and be tested. If you live in a household, all other household members must stay at home for 14 days.

If you are concerned about your new possible coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms, use the NHS 111 online coronavirus (COVID-19) service. If you do not have internet access, call NHS 111. For a medical emergency dial 999.

Keep Active

If you are under 70 with no underlying health conditions, you can still be active outside as long as you stay at least two metres (around three paces or six feet) away from other people.

You can walk the dog, go for a run or go for a bike ride – provided you keep your distance.

If you are over 70 and self-isolating, or you are pregnant or have an underlying health condition, but feel well, you can go outside with the same advice of keeping your distance from others.

If you are self-isolating with symptoms, or someone in your household has symptoms, you should not leave your home – but that doesn’t mean you should stop moving. It’s really important to use movement and activity as a way of breaking up your routine, if you feel well enough. Cook, play active games, dance or go into the garden if you’ve got one.

You can find information and guidance for healthy lifestyle choices, and a selection of free apps to download at One You .

If you are unwell – use your energy to get better and don’t try to be active. If you can get out of bed, then do so, but don’t try to do too much.

Finally, if you are feeling better after having had the virus, return to your normal routine gradually. We don’t yet know what the long term effects are but as far as we know, there is no reason why you can’t gently return to normal activity.

Remember, if you go out, you cannot use public gym equipment available in parks and you must not be in groups of more than two people, unless you are with people in your household.

Want to exercise at home?

You can. There are plenty of free resources available for exercising at home:

There are also a huge number of celebrities, musicians, physical trainers and others live-streaming dance parties, workouts and chats while socially distancing – check the social media profiles of your favourites to join in or search on YouTube.

The Body Coach (Joe Wicks) does a daily 30-minute workout for children every morning at 9am on his YouTube channel.

Kent Community Health NHS Foundation Trust
https://www.kentcht.nhs.uk/2020/03/25/looking-after-your-mental-health-and-wellbeing/

Mental health and emotional wellbeing

Naturally, you may be feeling worried or anxious due to the unprecedented challenges we are facing.

You may find your mood and feelings are affected and you may feel low, worried or have problems sleeping. You might miss being outside with other people if you are social distancing or self-isolating.

At times like these, it can be easy to fall into unhealthy patterns of behaviour which, in turn, can make you feel worse.

There are simple things you can do that may help, to stay mentally and physically active during this time such as:

  • Look for ideas of exercises you can do at home on the NHS website.
  • Spend time doing things you enjoy when you have time – this might include reading, cooking, other indoor hobbies or listening to or watching favourite radio or TV programmes.
  • Try to eat healthy, well-balanced meals, drink enough water, regularly exercise and try to avoid smoking, alcohol and drugs.
  • Keep your windows open to let in fresh air, get some natural sunlight if you can or get outside into the garden. You can also go for a walk outdoors if you stay more than two metres away from others.

Further information on looking after your mental health during this time is available below:

If you are feeling worried about what impact self-isolation and social distancing may have on your life, there is a Coronavirus financial help and rights guide available by Martin Lewis. This includes advice about sick pay, mortgages, rental help, energy top-ups, cancelled events and more from Martin Lewis at moneysavingexpert.com.

Live Well Kent is a local online and telephone support service offering guidance and advice about mental and physical health.

Mental health advice for young people

Kent Community Health NHS Foundation Trust
https://www.kentcht.nhs.uk/2020/03/25/looking-after-your-mental-health-and-wellbeing/

School closures

Due to the coronavirus outbreak, schools, colleges and childcare providers will be closed to the majority of pupils until further notice. This applies to both state-funded and independent schools.

The reason for closing schools is that the fewer children making the journey to school, and the fewer children in educational settings, the lower the risk that the virus can spread and infect vulnerable individuals in wider society.

Children of critical workers and vulnerable children

Schools and other educational establishments, remain safe places for children. Schools, colleges, nurseries, childminders and other registered childcare settings have therefore been asked to remain open for children of critical workers and vulnerable children where they can.

Childcare providers, schools and colleges are also encouraged to continue to look after critical workers’ children and vulnerable children throughout the Easter holidays.

The Department for Education (DfE) has published a document telling educational establishments which children should continue to be cared for.

Children of critical workers and vulnerable children whose school is unable to stay open.

The DfE are expecting the majority of settings to stay open for the children of critical workers and vulnerable children so they can continue to attend their usual provider, but acknowledge this will be impossible for some – such as small rural schools.

Where a setting is unable to stay open, the DfE will work with the local educational authority, regional school commissioners and neighbouring providers to find an alternative setting for their pupils.

Where the alternative setting is not nearby the Local Education Authority (Kent County Council) will provide transport arrangements to support them.

If your child’s school or childcare setting is closed to you and you need help finding provision at this time please contact:

For nursery and childcare settings:

Email – kentcfis@theeducationpeople.org
Telephone – 03000 41 23 23

For school settings:

Email – emergencyschoolplaces@kent.gov.uk
Telephone – 03000 41 21 21

Department for Education
https://www.gov.uk/…/closure-of-educational-settings-information-for-parents-and-carers