Information Correct as of 23rd February 2021.
National lockdown: Stay at Home
We are currently in a national lockdown and everyone needs to follow the ‘stay at home’ rules.
You must stay at home unless you have a reasonable excuse, for example, for work or education purposes. You can leave to:
- Shop for basic necessities
- Go to work (if you cannot do so from home)
- Exercise once a day with your household, support bubble or one other person
- Get medical help
- Attend education or childcare (if eligible).
Schools and colleges are open only for vulnerable children and the children of critical workers.
The ‘stay at home’ rule will end on 29 March but many restrictions will remain in place.
'Road map' out of lockdown
On Tuesday 22 February, the Prime Minister set the ‘roadmap’ out of lockdown. And from 8 March people will see restrictions start to lift as part of a four step plan.
There will be a minimum of five weeks between each step so that the scientists and the government can make sure that it is safe to move to the next step.
The decision will be based on four test which include:
- the vaccine roll out continues successfully
- evidence shows vaccines are working to reduce hospital admissions and deaths from Covid-19 in vaccinated people
- there is not a surge in Covid cases which would put too much pressure on the NHS;
- the risks are not changed because of new variants of concern.
Advice on shielding
People who are at high risk of coronavirus and clinically extremely vulnerable have been advised to shield until 31 March 2021. This means you should go out only for medical appointments, exercise or if it is essential.
And some people are being added to the shielded patients list. If you have been added - this is because you have been identified through the Covid 19 Population Risk Assessment as being at high risk of serious illness if you catch Covid 19.
You are advised to follow the government's shielding advice for people who are extremely clinically vulnerable.
Support bubbles expanded
You can form a support bubble with another household if:
- you live by yourself – even if carers visit you to provide support
- you are the only adult in your household who does not need continuous care as a result of a disability
- your household includes a child who is under the age of one or was under that age on 2 December 2020
- your household includes a child with a disability who needs continuous care and is under the age of 5, or was under that age on 2 December 2020
- you are aged 16 or 17 living with others of the same age and without any adults
If you think you might have coronavirus
A high temperature
- A new, continuous cough
Loss or change in sense of smell or taste
What to do if you have these symptoms
Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital. You should stay at home and self isolate.
Only call 111 if you cannot get help online.
You do not need to contact 111 to tell them you're staying at home. Read the NHS advice about staying at home.
Use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service if:
- You feel you cannot cope with your symptoms at home
- Your condition gets worse
- Your symptoms do not get better after 7 days
How to self isolate if you or someone in your house has coronavirus
If you have symptoms of coronavirus you should stay home and self isolate. What this means is you should not leave your house, even to do shopping, to avoid spreading the virus. If you live alone, you should stay at home for seven days from when your symptoms started. If you live with others, then you must stay at home for seven days from when your symptoms started. However, everyone else in the household who is well must stay at home and not leave for 10 days.
For more information about when to self isolate and what this means for families visit the Government website.
How to avoid catching or spreading germs
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 straight away.
Wash your hands with soap and water often, and for 20 seconds – use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available.
Try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell.
Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean.
NHS England had produced a list of common questions about coronavirus, covering advice for you and your family, how it's caught and spread, prevention, self-isolation, testing and treatment and foreign travel.
Other places for information: