Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Coronavirus protect yourself and others

This page was last updated on 22 March 2021.

National Lockdown

It was announced back in January that all parts of the UK were entering a national lockdown to control the spread of coronavirus, save lives and protect the NHS. As cases have been coming down, the UK has now begun to cautiously lift some of these restrictions. 

We all must continue to remain vigilant as coronavirus is very much still in our communities and continues to take lives. It is essential that everyone continues to act to stop the spread of virus.

Wash your hands, cover your face, make space. These are the three most effective ways we can all control the spread of the virus.

Remember if you have any coronavirus symptoms; high temperature, a new continuous cough, or a loss or change in your sense of taste or smell, get a free test by calling 119 or book online.

Together, we will control the virus and stop the spread.

Don’t forget, Hands, Face, Space.

To make sure you receive the most up-to-date guidance on symptoms, how to look after yourself and others and information on self-isolation and social distancing, please visit

To make sure you receive the most up-to-date guidance on symptoms, how to look after yourself and others and information on self-isolation and social distancing, please visit keep yourself updated with trusted information see these websites:


Covid Vaccine

The NHS has begun vaccinating people in mid and south Essex against coronavirus as part of the biggest immunisation programme in NHS history.

Please note, the NHS will contact people when it is their turn, please do not contact your GP practice for the vaccine.

Find out more about the local vaccination programme

Information to Parents and Young People

Visit our Understanding Covid-19 for children, young people and their families, for a wealth of information to help you have a better understanding of the coronavirus and what is being done to help children and young people stay safe and healthy.  

Support for those in high-risk groups

If you have been identified as being in a high-risk group, and are shielding, you may be eligible to recieve support to help with food and essentials supplies.

For more information please contact the Essex Welfare Service by completing their online form. If you do not have online access please call 0300 303 9988.

Support with recovering from Covid-19

Your Covid Recovery is a new NHS website designed to help people recover from the long-term effects of coronavirus, otherwise known as Covid-19.

If you have had Covid-19, you may still have some physical symptoms, such as, breathlessness, a cough and a lack of energy. You may also have psychological symptoms, such as feeling scared or anxious, depressed, having trouble sleeping and struggling to remember or concentrate.

These symptoms, both physical and psychological, are common. Your Covid Recovery includes information from experts about how to manage them and look after your health and wellbeing. It also includes information on returning to work, and a helpful section for family, friends and carers of people who are recovering

Mental health support

It is natural to feel anxious during times of uncertainty. Every Mind Matters have compiled a list of simple things you can do to maintain your mental wellbeing and deal with anxiety about coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

You can also find out more about local mental health support available by clicking on the links below:

Adults mental health support

Children and young adults people's mental health support

Domestic violence

If you are experiencing domestic abuse then there is support for you. You are not alone. At home shouldn’t mean at risk and if this is you then isolation rules do not apply.

Police response and support services remain available. If you or someone you know is in immediate danger, dial 999.

For more information, visit the GOV.UK website.

Outpatient Appointments

For information on routine outpatient appointments and in-patient visiting hours at our local hospitals please visit:

Medicines information

The documents below have more information on what to do to ensure that you have your medication during the outbreak.

Links with further information:

National Autistic Society – guidance and helpline for parents’, young people and staff:

Mencap - Easy Read guide to Coronavirus:

Place2Be – Guide to helping parents answer questions from their children and to support family wellbeing:

Young Minds - Talking to your child about Coronavirus and 10 tips from their Parents Helpline to support family wellbeing:

• Carers UK - Guidance for carers:

• Covibook – an interactive resource designed to support and reassure children aged 7 and under, designed to help children explain and draw the emotions that they might be experiencing during the pandemic:

• Amaze - information pack for parents

• Public Health England have produced an easy read version of their Advice on the coronavirus for places of education. You can download it here

• Inclusive Communication Essex (ICE) have produced Easy Read advice on Coronavirus:


Cold Weather Alert

The Met Office has issued a cold weather alert due to the falling temperatures this week.

There is currently a yellow warning for severe cold weather, ice and light snow across Essex. This weather could increase the health risks to vulnerable patients and disrupt the delivery of services.

For the very latest, visit the cold weather alert section of the Met Office website.

Keep Warm Keep Well

It's not just the icy conditions that can be treacherous during cold spells. The cold weather itself is life threatening, especially for the elderly and those with long-term health conditions.

Every year around 27% more people - the majority aged over 75 - die in the winter months compared to thet non-winter months which is why it is vital people keep warm and safe.

One of the best ways of keeping well during winter is to stay warm and follow the below top tips. Some may seem obvious, but they could help you to stay warmer and maintain good health over the coming weeks.

Heat your home well
By setting your heating to the right temperature (between 18-21ºC) you can still keep your home warm and lower your bills. If you feel cold at night, use a hot water bottle or electric blanket – but never use both together. It is especially important if you’re at home all day.

Wear a scarf when outdoors
Wrap a scarf loosely around your mouth when outdoors – add a hat and wear shoes with a good grip, too. If you have a heart or respiratory problem like asthma or COPD, stay indoors during very cold weather.

Eat well and have plenty of fluids
Food and water are vital sources of energy, and they help keep your body warm. Try to make sure you and your family have hot meals and drinks regularly throughout the day.

Get a flu jab
You can get free flu jabs to protect against seasonal flu from your GP or local pharmacy if you are over 65, pregnant, or have a long-term condition.

Look after yourself and others
On cold days try to avoid going outside. However, if you do need to go out, remember to wrap up warm and take care on slippery surfaces. If you have an older neighbour or relative, look out for them during the winter to make sure they are safe and well.

If you're worried about a relative or elderly neighbour, contact your local council or call the Age UK helpline on 0800 678 1174 (8am-7pm every day).

If you're concerned that the person may be suffering from hypothermia, contact NHS 111.

Keep your medicine cabinet well stocked

If you’re on medication, make sure you get your repeat prescriptions in time so you don’t run out. If you haven’t already, talk to your GP practice about registering for GP online services. Simply complete the relevant paperwork and you’ll be able to request repeat prescriptions online as well as make GP appointments. Check to make sure you have enough over the counter remedies for coughs and colds so you don’t need to leave home unless you have to.

Stay active
Try not to sit still for more than an hour or so indoors – get up and stretch your legs. Even moderate exercise can help keep you warm.

For more information on staying will this winter please visit NHS Choices.

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