Coronavirus Latest Information from Care for the Carers Government advice about Coronavirus, or COVID-19, has been announced. Please check the latest information on the Government website here: https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus which includes links to guidance about: How the virus is spread How to prevent the transmittion of coronavirus Social distancing and vulnerable people Staying at home. The key new government measures are: Stay at home. Every citizen must comply with these new measures. You should only leave the house for one of four reasons. Shopping for basic necessities such as food and medicine, to provide care or to help a vulnerable person and any medical need, one form of exercise a day and travelling to and from work where absolutely necessary. (Please see full guidelines at: https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus). There is guidance on shielding and protecting people, defined on medical grounds as extremely vulnerable from coronavirus, and for their family, friends and carers. People, including children, who are at very high risk of severe illness from coronavirus because of an underlying health condition should stay at home at all times and avoid any face-to-face contact for a period of at least 12 weeks from the day you receive your letter. The guidance is for situations where the extremely vulnerable person is living in their own home, with or without additional support. If you think you or the person you care for falls into a category of extremely vulnerable people and you have not received a letter by Sunday 29 March 2020 or been contacted by your GP, you should discuss your concerns with the GP or hospital clinician. You can find all the information about the shielding advice for people at the highest risk of severe illness from coronavirus, as well as categories, on the Government website here. If you do have to go out, stay at least 2 metres (6 ft) away from other people. Wash your hands as soon as you get home. Use telephone or online services to contact your GP or other essential services. If one person in any household has a persistent cough or fever, everyone living there must stay at home for 14 days. Care for the Carers has therefore made the following changes to how we work: Care for the Carers’ office is closed to the public, and our staff and volunteers are primarily working from home. All group, face-to-face support, counselling, activities and meetings are on hold until the end of April 2020. Where we can, carer support will be undertaken by telephone and we will keep in touch with members of carers’ groups and those currently accessing counselling by phone or online. We are exploring other ways to support carers and the people they care for during this difficult time. Please do keep in touch with us and if you need support please contact us. We are still here to support local carers, whether by telephone or online. NHS information - you can also get the latest information, answers to common questions and updates on the NHS website here. There is Public Health England Stay at Home Guidance for households with possible coronavirus infection here. Carers UK have information and guidance specifically developed for carers on their website here. This is being updated in response to carers’ queries about Coronavirus and its impact. Public Health England has a useful blog with 5 things you can do to protect yourself and your community. Read it here. Emergency planning - It may be useful to think about emergency planning if you haven't already done so. As a carer you will be concerned about what would happen to the person you care for if you had an accident or were suddenly taken ill. The East Sussex Carers Card enables you to set up a Carers Respite Emergency Support Service (CRESS) plan as part of your Carer’s Assessment. This includes contact details for up to three people who could provide short-term support in an emergency. You can find out more information and apply for a CRESS card here.