Coronavirus (COVID-19): advice for people on the Highest Risk List

Advice to help people on the Highest Risk List make informed decisions and access support services.

This document is part of a collection


The COVID-19 Highest Risk List will end on 31 May 2022

We will end the Highest Risk List in Scotland on 31 May 2022. The success of the vaccination programme and the availability of new medicines to treat Covid-19 mean that the majority of people on the List are at no greater risk from Covid than the general population. We have strong clinical evidence to support this which our specialist medical advisers agree means we can end the List.

We will still be able to contact the people we need to  if there’s any need for any different advice in the future.

If you’re on the Highest Risk List, the Chief Medical Officer will write to you soon with further details about the end of the list.

For more information:

Advice for immunosuppressed people

People who are immunosuppressed might not develop the same level of  immunity from the vaccination as others. This means that some people who are immunosuppressed will still be at higher risk from Covid-19, although many do get some protection from the vaccine.

Advice for immunosuppressed or immunocompromised people is available.

Staying safe at work

Visit our advice on working page for guidance on going or returning to work, and staying safe in the workplace.


Vaccination is still the most important way to protect yourself and other people. You and your friends and family should get all the vaccinations we offer you as soon as you can. Talk to your GP or specialist clinician if you are not sure about vaccinations.

Find information about vaccinations on NHS inform. This includes information for people with underlying health conditions.

Prioritising vaccinations and new treatments

We have not been using the Highest Risk List to prioritise people for vaccination for some time now or to identify people who meet the criteria for new treatments such as antivirals. Ending the Highest Risk List does not have an impact on identifying those who are eligible for additional vaccinations or new Covid-19 treatments.

Support to get back to a more normal way of life

Many people on the Highest Risk List have told us about the impact on their mental health and wellbeing. If you are more worried, or isolated, or struggling to reconnect with people and things you were doing before the pandemic, there is information about support you can get at

Asking others to keep distancing from you

You can find information about the Distance Aware badge and lanyard scheme. The scheme is for anyone who would like others to give them extra space and care, for any reason.

Support from your local council

The National Assistance Helpline number has now closed. But if you need additional support your local council may be able to provide advice on where to get this. This might include local third sector organisations or projects. For further information you can check your local council website or alternatively contact them by phone.

Letters to people on the Highest Risk List

We publish letters that have gone out to people on the Highest Risk List. Translations or alternative formats of the letters are uploaded on request.

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