If you live alone (or are a lone adult with dependent children under 18), you will be able to form a support bubble with another household. From 1 August, many people will no longer need to shield, and the advice will be that you can visit shops and places of worship, but you should continue to maintain social distancing whenever possible. You can find the full guidance here https://www.gov.uk/government/news/plans-to-ease-guidance-for-over-2-million-shielding?
You should shortly receive a letter from your GP or Specialist Centre advising you of these changes. Please do not hesitate to contact Laura Bell, NPUK’s Clinical Nurse Specialist if you have any questions about your own level of risk as people are encouraged to spend more time outdoors, and to gradually return to normal activities, school and the workplace.
At the moment, 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. 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. Employers should do all they can to enable employees who have been shielding to work from home where this is possible, including moving them to another role if required.
We understand how challenging it has been for many of our families who have had to shield over the past few months, and we also appreciate how anxious they may be about the changes to the guidance – as well as what this may mean for them. Please keep in mind that we are here to help, and that NPUK can assist with any practical or emotional support, which may also include explaining the latest shielding guidance over the coming weeks.
You can contact us at any time, by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org and by phone on: 0191 415 06 93.