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Coronavirus: important information for you (updated 29 April)

Published on Tuesday, March 31, 2020

coronavirus

STRICT lockdown measures from the Government that aim to save lives by slowing the spread of the coronavirus have meant big changes to the way we all live, work and socialise – regardless of our age.

Until further notice, everyone in the UK should stay at home, leaving the house only if absolutely necessary.

  • Only go outside for food, exercise, if you have to help a vulnerable person, or if you have to go to work (but only if you cannot work from home)
  • If you go out, stay 2 metres (6ft) away from other people at all times
  • Wash your hands as soon as you get home.

Do not meet others, even friends or family. You can spread the virus even if you don’t have symptoms.

The police have powers to fine anyone in a public space who’s in a group of more than two people, if they don’t live in the same household.

The 2 metre gap between yourself and others applies if you’re buying food in a supermarket, making an essential journey by bus, or if you’re outdoors, having a walk in the fresh air.

Everyone should continue to protect themselves – and others – by thoroughly washing their hands with soap and hot water for at least 20 seconds, regularly throughout the day. Hand sanitizer can be used when soap and hot water aren’t available.

Always sneeze or cough into a clean tissue – not in your hands – and then bin the tissue immediately, before thoroughly washing your hands.

To protect yourself from the virus, only touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are perfectly clean – and avoid contact with anyone showing symptoms of coronavirus.

Do not leave home if you, or someone you live with, has either:

  • a high temperature; or
  • a new, continuous cough

Check the NHS website if you have symptoms.

This stay-at-home advice applies to everyone, but it’s particularly vital for people aged 70 and over, people of any age with an underlying health condition, people with a weakened immune system, and pregnant women.

People classed as ‘extremely vulnerable’, and therefore at the greatest risk of serious illness from the coronavirus, should shield themselves from infection by staying at home. The Government is currently advising people to shield until the end of June and is regularly monitoring this position.

This 'extremely vulnerable' group includes people with certain cancers, those who have received organ transplants, people on certain immunosuppression therapies, and people with severe respiratory conditions, such as severe asthma or severe COPD.

All those classed as extremely vulnerable should have received a letter, providing further help and advice.

Further information for extremely vulnerable people, and those who care for them, is available here.

If you're struggling because of coronavirus - for example, with paying bills, being out of work, or taking care of your mental health - you can find help here.

Leicester City Council’s director of public health Ivan Browne said: “The coronavirus pandemic means that we all need to change the way we live our lives for a while.

“It’s not easy, but by drastically reducing our interaction with other people, we can help slow the spread of this highly infectious virus.

“Although for most people this is a mild, self-limiting illness, for some people the consequences are far more serious so it’s really important that we do all we can to prevent the infection from spreading.”

City Mayor Peter Soulsby said: “We’re working closely with our partners at Public Health England to protect the people of Leicester, with the most vulnerable members of our community our top priority.

“We’re also working hard to ensure we can continue to provide the vital services that people in Leicester rely on.

“But the most important message for me to stress is that you must stay at home.

“Unless you’re an essential worker, please stay at home, protect the NHS and help save lives.”

With advice changing all the time, it’s important that you only go to trusted sources – such as BBC Radio Leicester and the Leicester Mercury – for reliable and up-to-date information that will help keep you and your family safe.

The Government’s latest advice for UK citizens is available at www.gov.uk

Guidance for everyone in the UK about staying at home and away from others is available here

Guidance for vulnerable people, and for those who care for older or vulnerable people, is available here.

Information about the coronavirus in Leicester is available at leicester.gov.uk while information about council services affected by coronavirus can be found at leicester.gov.uk/serviceupdates