Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Staying up to date 

To stay up to date with the latest local news on coronavirus please visit our news page

For the latest information on local testing see here (18 Sep 2020)

What you need to do: 

  1. Stay at home
  2. Only go outside for food, health reasons or essential work
  3. Stay 2 meters (6ft) away from other people
  4. Wash your hands as soon as you get home

Anyone can spread the virus.

More information and resources 

Follow this advice if you're told by the NHS Test and Trace service that you've been in contact with a person who has coronavirus (COVID-19).

Stay at home for 14 days

If you're told you've been in contact with a person who has coronavirus:

• stay at home (self-isolate) for 14 days from the day you were last in contact with the person – it can take up to 14 days for symptoms to appear
• do not leave your home for any reason – if you need food or medicine, order it online or by phone, or ask friends and family to drop it off at your home • do not have visitors in your home, including friends and family – except for essential care
• try to avoid contact with anyone you live with as much as possible
• people you live with do not need to self-isolate if you do not have symptoms If you live with someone at higher risk from coronavirus, try to arrange for them to stay with friends or family for 14 days. If you have to stay in the same home together, read about how to avoid spreading coronavirus to people you live with.

How NHS Test and Trace will contact you

You'll be contacted 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. You'll be asked to sign in to the NHS Test and Trace contact tracing website at https://contact-tracing.phe.gov.uk. If you cannot use the contact tracing website, they will call you.

Important 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

To find out if you are eligible to be tested you can find out more Coronavirus testing.

A new, free government-led app - NHS COVID-19 – launches today and is a vital part of the NHS Test and Trace service in England and the NHS Wales Test, Trace, Protect service. It’s the fastest way to see who might be at risk from coronavirus. The app has a number of tools, including contact tracing, local area alerts and venue check-in. It uses technology from Apple and Google, designed to protect every user’s privacy. You can find more information about the app here and in the DHSC’s press release

SummaCovid Protect logory

Covid Protect is a pioneering initiative developed by the NHS in Norfolk and Waveney which aims to support and protect people with the most medical need in our communities. Around 28,000 patients who are at higher risk of developing complications from coronavirus (Covid19) received letters from NHS Norfolk and Waveney Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) in April asking them to report their health and symptoms on a daily basis via a dedicated, secure NHS portal www.nhspatient.org using a unique code.

Patients are asked if they or anyone in their family is currently experiencing any coronavirus symptoms such as a cough or a fever. They are also asked if they have sufficient medicines and essential supplies such as food and whether they need any additional support. These daily updates help doctors identify quickly which patients are in need of additional medical or social support.  Patients without access to the internet have been asked to encourage a family member or friend to do this for them over the phone if they are not isolating with them.

CCG staff are phoning those people who are not using the portal. They may be unable to use the service or be experiencing technical problems – or they might not wish to participate. In any case, the staff callers are there to help. 

Identifying people who would benefit the most 

The CCG has sent letters to patients in high risk groups, including those who have received an organ transplant, patients with severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or severe asthma who have been admitted to hospital in the last 12 months, and those taking immune suppressant medications. 

The people chosen were identified as part of the Government’s coronavirus shielding initiative together with some identified by their GP as being in most need. This is happening across most GP practices in Norfolk and Waveney.

Alongside the letters, patients were sent a brochure explaining that they have been identified as being at greater risk of becoming unwell if they catch coronavirus.  The brochure provides useful information about how to self-isolate, the importance of hand washing and social distancing, support with daily living and the importance of keeping in touch with friends and family and accessing medical care.

Patients are also reminded that help is also available from: www.gov.uk/coronavirus-extremely-vulnerable or by calling 0800 028 8327, the Government’s dedicated helpline.

The CCG letters are in addition to the letters that patients may have already received from either local councils or the NHS.  It is another way that the local NHS and local councils are working together to keep people as safe and well as possible.

Read our briefing, here.

New phone line launched to support you during the coronavirus outbreak.

Guide Dogs are providing answers and information for people with sight loss and their families during the coronavirus outbreak. They can help you identify ways to continue living actively, independently, and well, refer you to their other services or help you access services by other providers. Please call 0800 781 1444 between 9 am - 5 pm Monday to Friday.

Guide Dogs has changed the way it provides services in response to social distancing, with every channel being used flexibly to give you choice and access to expertise and advice promptly.  For example, Guide Dogs staff can now arrange to contact you regularly by phone to provide individual support through the social isolation period.  To access this and other services available, please call 0800 781 1444  between 9 am - 5 pm Monday to Friday or visit the website to find out more.

Deafblind customers who use BSL should contact Guide Dogs via the webpage, clicking on the SignVideo logo on the right hand side, or through a SignVideo app. This connects you to a SignVideo interpreter who will then connect to the information line.

You can read the recent newsletter from our partners Opening Doors here

For advice from BOC watch this short video

National guidance can be found on the Carers UK website. Local guidance can be found here for Norfolk, and here for Suffolk.

  1. Stay active at home with tips from Active Norfolk plus telephone service coaching here
  2. Top tips from Keep Moving Suffolk
  3. Home exercise tips and fitness guides from NHS England
  4. If you have symptoms of coronavirus go to NHS 111 online
  5. If you want to get medical advice about anything else, start by getting some advice from home
  6. If you get asked to go to a GP practice you might be asked to attend somewhere different, more information here
  7. If you need over the counter medicines such as hayfever or pain relief medication please continue to buy these when you go shopping, more information here
  8. If you need to order repeat prescriptions please only do so when you have seven days medication left, more information here  
  9. Sign up to the NHS App, this can help you with things like ordering repeat prescriptions, checking your symptoms or booking appointments
  10. If you are registered with a practice in Great Yarmouth and Waveney, or with either St James Surgery or Southgates and the Woottons surgeries in Kings Lynn you can get your repeat prescriptions from our prescription ordering direct service   

You can find information on how to look after your well-being during the COVID-19 outbreak on Wellbeing Norfolk and Suffolk website.

Cyber Aware is the UK government's advice on how to stay secure online during coronavirus.

Many of us are spending more time online. Keep yourself and your family secure by following our advice. Follow this link (It's safe)

All staff in the CCG have been redeployed from their usual work to support frontline clinical services during the Coronavirus pandemic. For example some are working with GP practices to help them install new IT for online or video consultations, supporting GP practices to contact patients at most risk, clinically-trained staff are helping in local NHS Trusts (for example to help plan discharging people from hospital). 

This means that from March 2020 most of the normal CCG work to commission or transform services is paused.

The CCG has cancelled the majority of meetings that involve wider partners. Remaining meetings will be held virtually to reduce the risks of transmission to NHS and partner staff.

We would always wish our Governing Body meetings in public to proceed as planned but we support entirely the national guidelines on social distancing. We are therefore holding Governing Body meetings by internal NHS videoconferencing, however members of the public are welcome to ask questions by This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Agendas and timings for meetings can be found here.

If you are in receipt of Government provided food boxes and medicine deliveries, you will continue to receive this support until the end of July.

Local councils and volunteers are also providing support to people who are shielding, to enable them to stay safely in their homes. The government is funding local councils to continue to provide these services to those who need them until the end of July.  

What support is available to people who are shielding until the end of July? 

Essential supplies 

There are a number of ways that those who are shielding can access food and other essentials: 

    • Make use of the supermarket priority delivery slots that are available for this group. When a clinically extremely vulnerable person registers online as needing support with food, their data is shared with supermarkets. This means if they make an online order with a supermarket (as both a new or existing customer), they will be eligible for a priority slot. 
       
    • Use the many commercial options now available for accessing food, including telephone ordering, food box delivery, prepared meal delivery and other non-supermarket food delivery providers. A list has been shared with local authorities and charities.
    • A free, standardised weekly parcel of food and household essentials. If you have registered for this support online before 17 July you will continue to receive weekly food box deliveries until the end of July. 
    • If you need urgent help and have no other means of support, contact your local council to find out what support services are available in their area.
    • For anyone facing financial hardship, the government has made £63 million available to local councils in England to help those who are struggling to afford food and other essentials.

NHS Volunteer Responders

Support will continue to be available through the NHS Volunteer Responder Scheme beyond the end of July.

NHS Volunteer Responders can support you with:

    • Collecting shopping, medication (if your friends and family cannot collect them for you) or other essential supplies;
    • A regular, friendly phone call which can be provided by different volunteers each time or by someone who is also shielding and will stay in contact for several weeks; and
    • Transport to medical appointment.

Please call 0808 196 3646 between 8am and 8pm to arrange support or speak to your health care professional for transport support. A carer or family member can also do this on their behalf. More information is available at www.nhsvolunteerresponders.org.uk

Health care 

Any essential carers or visitors who support you with your everyday needs can continue to visit unless they have any of the symptoms of COVID-19 (a new continuous cough, a high temperature, or a loss of, or change in, their normal sense of taste or smell). 

People in the clinically extremely vulnerable group should continue to access the NHS services they need during this time. This may be delivered in a different way or in a different place than they are used to, for example via an online consultation, but if they do need to go to hospital or attend another health facility for planned care, extra planning and protection will be put in place. 

Mental health support 

It is normal during these uncertain and unusual times to feel anxious or feel low.

Follow the advice that works for you in the guidance on how to look after your mental health and wellbeing during coronavirus (COVID-19)

The Every Mind Matters page on anxiety and NHS mental wellbeing audio guides provide further information on how to manage anxiety. 

If you feel you need to talk to someone about your mental health or you are looking for more support for someone else, we would urge you to speak to a GP and seek out mental health support delivered by charities or the NHS. 

Income and employment support 

At this time, people who are shielding are advised not to go to work. This guidance remains advisory.   

Those shielding will be eligible for Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) on the basis of their shielding status until the 31 July. SSP eligibility criteria apply

From 1 August, if clinically extremely vulnerable people are unable to work from home but need to work, they can, as long as the business is COVID safe.   

The Government is asking employers to work with them to ease the transition back to a more normal way of life for their shielding employees. It is important that this group continues to take careful precautions, and employers should do all they can to enable them to work from home where this is possible, including moving them to another role if required.   

Where this is not possible, those who have been shielding should be provided with the safest onsite roles that enable them to maintain social distancing.

If employers cannot provide a safe working environment, they can continue to use the Job Retention Scheme for shielded employees who have already been furloughed.  

What support will be available after July? 

From 1 August, clinically extremely vulnerable people will continue to have access to priority supermarket delivery slots if you have registered online before 17 July for a priority delivery slot.  

NHS Volunteer Responders will also continue to offer support to those who need it, including collecting and delivering food and medicines. 

The NHS Volunteer Responders Scheme has been expanded to offer a new Check-in and Chat Plus role. This new role has been designed to provide peer support and companionship to people who are shielding as they adapt to a more normal way of life.   

If you are vulnerable or at risk and need help with shopping, medication or other essential supplies, please call 0808 196 3646 (8am to 8pm).  


Government is committed to supporting local councils and voluntary sector organisations to respond to those who have specific support needs and requirements during the COVID-19 pandemic. Details of the support and advice available can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/find-coronavirus-support   

The updated shielding guidance should not affect any social care or support you were receiving prior to the start of shielding.  

Individuals should continue to contact their local council if they have any ongoing social care needs.  

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