HRH Duke of Edinburgh, 10 June 1921 to 9 April 2021 Read more

Publication - Advice and guidance

Coronavirus (COVID-19): shielding advice and support

Details of shielding advice to help people make informed decisions and access support services during the coronavirus pandemic.

Contents
Coronavirus (COVID-19): shielding advice and support
Levels advice

Additional Protection Levels advice for people on the shielding list

We have some extra advice at all Protection Levels for people at the highest risk from coronavirus (people on the shielding list). You can choose to follow this advice as well as the general population guidance.

We will not ask you to distance from people within your own homes or to stop taking outdoor exercise, whatever Protection Level you live in.

The timetable for easing restrictions sets out how we will gradually move out of lockdown.

Level 4

 

Our advice is that people on the shielding list should not go to work at Level 4 if you cannot work from home. This applies even if you've had the coronavirus vaccine.

Contact with others

Minimise contact with people outside your own household if you can.

You should not take public transport.

Shopping

Strictly follow the shopping guidelines for the general population.

Limit the number of times you go to a shop.

Shop at quieter times.

If you cannot work from home

The Chief Medical Officer advises you not to go to work, unless you can work from home.

The Chief Medical Officer has sent you a letter which is similar to a fit note. It will last until 30 June 2021. You can use it while your area or workplace is in level 4. Use this letter to stay off work if you cannot work from home.

If you need your shielding notification letter from the Chief Medical Officer but no longer have it, call the National Assistance Helpline on 0800 111 4000 (Monday – Friday, office hours).

School/college/formal childcare

Children on the shielding list should not attend in person if they live or attend school, college, or formal childcare in a level 4 area. However, a child’s clinician may advise that an individualised risk assessment can be undertaken.

Students who are on the shielding list are also advised not to attend college or university in person. Students that are sharing term-time accommodation with others should discuss any concerns with their accommodation provider or institution to see what support can be put in place.

People who live with someone on the shielding list

Children and young people who live with someone on the shielding list can go to school. They should follow the school’s safety measures.

Household members who cannot work from home can still go into the workplace.

Employers have a responsibility to make sure the workplace and duties are COVID-safe. Strictly follow the FACTS guidance.

Level 3

 

Contact with others

Limit meeting people outside your own household.

Avoid indoor public spaces.

Shopping

Strictly follow the shopping guidelines for the general population.

Limit the number of times you go to a shop.

Shop at quieter times.

If you cannot work from home

Following regular and individual workplace risk assessments, your employer should make any changes needed to your workplace to protect you.

Speak to your employer to ensure all appropriate protections are in place.

Most workplaces can be made safe.

School/college/formal childcare

Parents or guardians should discuss with their clinician whether children should still attend.

People who live with someone on the shielding list

Follow the advice to the general population.

Level 2

 

Contact with others

Reduce the number of people or households you have face-to-face contact with.

Avoid 1-metre zones (areas which allow physical distancing of only 1 metre)

Shopping

Strictly follow the shopping guidelines for the general population.

If you cannot work from home

Following regular and individual workplace risk assessments, your employer should make any changes needed to your workplace to protect you.

Most workplaces can be made safe. Discuss any concerns with your employer.

School/college/formal childcare

Follow the advice to the general population.

People who live with someone on the shielding list

Follow the advice to the general population.

Level 1

 

Contact with others

Follow the advice to the general population.

Shopping

Strictly follow the shopping guidelines for the general population.

If you cannot work from home

Following regular and individual workplace risk assessments, your employer should make any changes needed to your workplace to protect you.

Most workplaces can be made safe.

School/college/formal childcare

Follow the advice to the general population.

People who live with someone on the shielding list

Follow the advice to the general population.

Level 0

 

Contact with others

Follow the advice to the general population.

Shopping

Strictly follow the shopping guidelines for the general population.

If you cannot work from home

Following regular and individual workplace risk assessments, your employer should make any changes needed to your workplace to protect you.

Most workplaces can be made safe.

School/college/formal childcare

Follow the advice to the general population.

People who live with someone on the shielding list

Follow the advice to the general population.

 

 


First published: 23 Feb 2021 Last updated: 2 Apr 2021 -