Publication - Advice and guidance

Coronavirus (COVID-19): physical distancing in education and childcare settings

Advice for schools and childcare settings who are providing care to children during the pandemic.

Contents
Coronavirus (COVID-19): physical distancing in education and childcare settings
Symptoms of coronavirus

Typical signs and symptoms of Coronavirus (COVID-19)

For coronavirus symptom information go to NHS Inform.

Symptoms can range from a mild-to-moderate illness to severe acute respiratory infection.

For most people Coronavirus (COVID-19) will be a mild infection. It is more likely to cause severe symptoms in people with weakened immune systems, older people, and those with long-term conditions like diabetes, cancer and chronic lung disease. It is thought that children are more likely to have mild disease.

Measures to prevent spread of the virus and protect people at increased risk of severe illness

There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19. The following measures are recommended to help reduce the spread of the virus and to protect people at increased risk of severe illness:

Stay at home: guidance for households with possible coronavirus (COVID-19) infection measures should be followed by people with symptoms and their household contacts to reduce the community spread of COVID-19.  This means that anyone who has symptoms and anyone else living in the same household should follow the guidance for households with possible coronavirus infection on NHS Inform.

Physical distancing measures should be followed by everyone, including children, in line with the government advice to stay at home. The aim of physical distancing measures is to reduce the transmission of the virus. Up to date information can be found on the NHS Inform website.  Note that shielding advice should be followed by individuals at risk of severe infection (see below).

Shielding is a measure to protect people, including children, who are extremely vulnerable to severe illness from COVID-19 because of certain underlying health conditions. The aim of shielding is to minimise interaction between these individuals and others to protect them from coming into contact with COVID-19. People with these serious underlying health conditions are strongly advised to rigorously follow shielding measures in order to keep themselves safe. Further information, including the list of underlying health conditions that make people extremely vulnerable, is available in the Physical distancing guide on the NHS Inform website.