The NHS and Public Health England (PHE) are extremely well prepared for outbreaks of new infectious diseases. The NHS has put in place measures to ensure the safety of all patients and NHS staff while also ensuring services are available to the public as normal.
Do not go to a GP surgery, community pharmacy or hospital. Call 111, stay indoors and avoid close contact with other people.
Further information is available on nhs.uk.
Stay at home if you have coronavirus symptoms
Stay at home for 14 days if you have either:
a high temperature
a new, continuous cough
loss of sense of smell or taste
Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital.
IF YOU OR ANYONE IN YOUR HOUSEHOLD HAS SYMPTOMS, THEN ALL MEMBERS OF THE HOUSEHOLD HAS TO SELF ISOLATE FOR 14 DAYS.
Tips for staying at home
It's important to stay at home to stop coronavirus spreading.
try to keep at least 2 metres (3 steps) from other people in your home, particularly older people or those with long-term health conditions
ask friends and family and delivery services to deliver things like food shopping and medicines – but avoid contact with them
sleep alone if possible
regularly wash your hands with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds
try to stay away from older people and those with long-term health conditions
drink plenty of water and take everyday painkillers, such as paracetamol and ibuprofen, to help with your symptoms
do not have visitors (ask people to leave deliveries outside)
do not leave the house, for example to go for a walk, to school or public places
Use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service if:
you feel you cannot cope with your symptoms at home
your condition gets worse
Only call 111 if you cannot get help online.
Like the common cold, coronavirus infection usually occurs through close contact with a person with novel coronavirus via cough and sneezes or hand contact. A person can also be infected by touching contaminated surfaces if they do not wash their hands.
Testing of suspected coronavirus cases is carried out in line with strict regulations. This means that suspected cases are kept in isolation, away from public areas of the hospital and returned home also in isolation. Any equipment that come into contact with suspected cases are thoroughly cleaned as appropriate. Specific guidance has also been shared with NHS staff to help safeguard them and others. Patients can be reassured that their safety is a top priority, and are encouraged to attend all appointments as usual.
Everyone is being reminded to follow Public Health England advice to:
• Always carry tissues with you and use them to catch your cough or sneeze. Then bin the tissue, and wash your hands, or use a sanitiser gel.
• Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after using public transport. Use a sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available.
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
• Avoid close contact with people who are unwell.