Coronavirus - update for shielding patients, as of 1st August 2020
Advice for shielding patients update
You will hopefully be aware that the Government advice for shielded patients is changing on the 1st August. We do not expect this decision to change unless the transmission of COVID-19 in the community starts to rise significantly.
What does this mean?
What this means is:
- the government will no longer be advising you to shield
- the support from the National Shielding Service of free food parcels, medicine deliveries and care will stop
- NHS Volunteer Responders will carry on delivering the food you buy, prescriptions and essential items to you if you need it
- you will still be eligible for priority supermarket slots (if you registered by 17 July)
What should you do from 1st August?
You may still be at risk of severe illness if you catch coronavirus, so stay at home as much as you can and continue to take precautions when you do go out. You can do this by washing your hands regularly, avoiding touching your face and keeping 2 metres away from people outside of your household or bubble wherever possible.
From 1 August, you’ll be advised you could go out to more places and see more people, for example, the advice is:
- you can go to work, as long as the workplace is COVID-secure – but carry on working from home if you can
- children who are clinically extremely vulnerable can go back to school (when the rest of their class goes back)
- you can go outside to buy food, to places of worship and for exercise – keeping 2 metres away wherever possible
Returning to work
As a GP practice we are not able to sign patients off work without a medical reason.
We understand some patients may feel unsafe or anxious with the end of shielding not being a medical reason for not returning to work. If you have concerns we advise that you contact your employer as they have responsibility to carry out a risk assessment if required and provide COVID precautions. If you need employment advice we would recommend that you contact the ACAS helpline on 0300 123 1100 or use their website.
Changes at Frome Medical Practice from 1st August
From the 1st August we will not be providing a specific shielded area for shielded patients at the practice.
We will however ensure you are seen in a clinicially safe environment and all our staff will wear appropriate PPE.
We also ask that you continue to wear a face covering when visiting the practice.
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