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Advice on the Coronavirus

Updated 6 April 2020

Coronavirus - information and advice

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Southern Health is working with local health partners, Public Health England and NHS England to ensure staff are fully briefed and prepared to support the national response to containing the spread of the coronavirus (Covid-19). It is important that we support all our patients, service users and communities during this period.

New Government advice

The single most important action we can all take, in fighting coronavirus, is to stay at home in order to protect the NHS and save lives. When we reduce our day-to-day contact with other people, we will reduce the spread of the infection.  

This new guidance means you should only leave the house for one of four reasons. 

  • Shopping for basic necessities, for example food and medicine, which must be as infrequent as possible. 
  • One form of exercise a day, for example a run, walk, or cycle - alone or with members of your household. 
  • Any medical need, or to provide care or to help a vulnerable person. 
  • Travelling to and from work, but only where this absolutely cannot be done from home. 

These four reasons are exceptions - even when doing these activities, you should be minimising time spent outside of the home and ensuring you are 2 metres apart from anyone outside of your household.

How can you stop the spread of the infection? 

    Increase handwashing

  • Social distancing - follow the guidance above and stay 2m away from people.     

  • Catch it, kill it, bin it (Sneeze into a tissue and dispose of it in a bin.)   

How long should I stay at home for? 

  • if you live alone and you have symptoms of coronavirus illness (COVID-19), however mild, stay at home for 7 days from when your symptoms started. 
  • if you live with others and you are the first in the household to have symptoms of coronavirus, then then you must stay at home for 7 days, but all other household members who remain well must stay at home and not leave the house for 14 days. The 14-day period starts from the day when the first person in the house became ill. 
  • for anyone else in the household who starts displaying symptoms, they need to stay at home for 7 days from when the symptoms appeared, regardless of what day they are on in the original 14 day isolation period.      

Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital. You do not need to contact 111 to tell them you're staying at home. Testing for coronavirus is not needed if you're staying at home.     

If you live with someone who is 70 or over, has a long-term condition, is pregnant or has a weakened immune system, try to find somewhere else for them to stay for 14 days. If you have to stay at home together, try to keep away from each other as much as possible.  



    Government and Public Health England advice 

  • Updated guidance following the recent announcement from the Government (23.03.2020) can be found here.       
  • Find the latest information and advice from Public Health England at

  • Use the NHS 111  online coronavirus service that can tell you if you need medical help and advise you on what to do. 

  • Find advice if you are in a high risk group from Public Health England here.

  • Find updated advice for pregnant women by Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists here.

 Advice for parents

  • Find information for parents by Healthier Together here

Easy Read information
Easy read information on Coronavirus has been produced by Mencap and you can download it from their website.

Beyond Words have created a picture story, that will help you to understand what to do if you have Coronavirus and how to keep safe. You can download a free copy from their website.                    

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