If you are caring for someone who falls into the ‘clinically extremely vulnerable’ category for risk of severe illness from COVID-19, there are some simple steps that you can take to protect them and to reduce their risk. Ensure you follow advice on good hygiene:
- only care that is essential should be provided, such as washing, giving medication, help getting dressed and preparing meals
- wash your hands when you arrive at the home of the person you care for and often thereafter, using soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitiser
- 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 visit if you are unwell and make alternative arrangements for their care
- provide information on who they should call if they feel unwell, how to use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service and leave the number for NHS 111 prominently displayed
If you have symptoms of coronavirus you can request a test for yourself, to see if you have the virus, or on behalf of someone you care for. You should ring 111 as soon as possible if you have any symptoms of Covid-19, such as a high temperature, new continuous cough or loss of taste and smell.
You can also be prioritised for testing as a recognised key worker if you are an unpaid carer.