Publication - Advice and guidance

Coronavirus (COVID-19): advice for people at highest risk

Advice to help people in the Covid highest risk group make informed decisions and access support services.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): advice for people at highest risk
Medical appointments or advice

Medical appointments or advice

Hospital and GP appointments

We strongly recommend that you attend any medical appointments you need.

Urgent medical care (that is not coronavirus)

For urgent questions about your existing medical condition, please contact your GP practice or specialist hospital care team. This includes if it is in relation to the condition of the person you are caring for.

Call 999 in an emergency. This is when somebody is seriously ill or injured, and their life is at serious risk. Tell the call handler that you have been asked to shield because of an underlying health condition.

If you have symptoms of coronavirus

If, at any point, you think you have developed symptoms of coronavirus, call 111. Symptoms include:

  • a new continuous cough
  • a high temperature (above 37.8 °C)
  • a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste

A new continuous cough is where you:

  • have a new cough that’s lasted for an hour or more
  • have had 3 or more episodes of coughing in 24 hours
  • are coughing more than usual

A high temperature is feeling hot to the touch on your chest or back. You don’t need to measure your temperature.

If you are high risk and develop symptoms phone the NHS on 111: do this as soon as you notice symptoms.

First published: 23 Feb 2021 Last updated: 14 Jan 2022 -