Coronavirus

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COVID-19 is a new illness that can affect your lungs and airways. It's caused by a virus called coronavirus.

The NHS, local authorities, police and fire organisations and third sector and voluntary sector organisations across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent are working very hard to support individuals, families, businesses, care homes and all key workers during the coronavirus outbreak.

It is extremely important that you continue to access NHS services if and when you need to, for example, contacting your GP, NHS 111 and, in emergencies, 999.

This includes continuing to manage a long-term condition, addressing an arising concern about your health, or continuing to attend appointments linked to cancer and so on. View our animation below for information about accessing services during the pandemic. You can also view the British Sign Language (BSL) version here. More information can be found here.

Mental wellbeing is also crucial at this time. You will find helpful links for this and many other areas on this page.

Coronavirus Vaccine

The NHS is currently offering the COVID-19 vaccine to people most at risk from coronavirus.

In England, the vaccine is being offered in some hospitals and pharmacies, at hundreds of local vaccination centres run by GPs and at larger vaccination centres.

It's being given to:

  • people aged 80 and over
  • people who live or work in care homes
  • health and social care workers at high risk

You will also need to be registered with a GP surgery in England. You can register with a GP if you do not have one.

The vaccine will be offered more widely as soon as possible.

The order in which people will be offered the vaccine is based on advice from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI).

Read the latest JCVI advice on priority groups for the COVID-19 vaccination on GOV.UK

How the COVID-19 vaccine is given

The COVID-19 vaccine is given as an injection into your upper arm.

It's given as 2 doses. You will have the 2nd dose 3 to 12 weeks after having the 1st dose.

How to get the COVID-19 vaccine

If you've been sent a letter you can book your vaccination appointments online.

If you haven't been contacted yet please don't worry. This is gradual roll-out and you will be contacted as soon as possible. Please do not contact your GP.

How safe is the COVID-19 vaccine?

The vaccines approved for use in the UK have met strict standards of safety, quality and effectiveness set out by the independent Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).

Any coronavirus vaccine that is approved must go through all the clinical trials and safety checks all other licensed medicines go through. The MHRA follows international standards of safety.

Other vaccines are being developed. They will only be available on the NHS once they have been thoroughly tested to make sure they are safe and effective.

So far, thousands of people have been given a COVID-19 vaccine and reports of serious side effects, such as allergic reactions, have been very rare. No long-term complications have been reported.

To find out more about the vaccines approved in the UK, see:

How effective is the COVID-19 vaccine?

The 1st dose of the COVID-19 vaccine should give you good protection from coronavirus. But you need to have the 2 doses of the vaccine to give you longer lasting protection.

There is a chance you might still get or spread coronavirus even if you have the vaccine.

This means it is important to:

  • continue to follow social distancing guidance
  • if you can, wear something that covers your nose and mouth in places where it's hard to stay away from other people
Information:

Read more about why vaccines are safe and important, including how they work and what they contain.

COVID-19 vaccine side effects

Most side effects of the COVID-19 vaccine are mild and should not last longer than a week, such as:

  • a sore arm where the needle went in
  • feeling tired
  • a headache
  • feeling achy
  • feeling or being sick

You can take painkillers, such as paracetamol, if you need to.

If you have a high temperature you may have coronavirus or another infection.

If your symptoms get worse or you are worried, call 111.

Allergic reactions

Tell healthcare staff before you are vaccinated if you've ever had a serious allergic reaction (anaphylaxis).

You should not have the vaccine if you've ever had a serious allergic reaction to:

  • a previous vaccine
  • a previous dose of the same COVID-19 vaccine
  • some medicines, household products or cosmetics

Serious allergic reactions are rare. If you do have a reaction to the vaccine, it usually happens in minutes. Staff giving the vaccine are trained to deal with allergic reactions and treat them immediately.

Advice if you're of childbearing age, pregnant or breastfeeding

There's no evidence the COVID-19 vaccine is unsafe if you're pregnant. But more evidence is needed before you can be routinely offered the vaccine.

The JCVI has updated its advice to recommend you may be able to have the vaccine if you're pregnant and:

  • at high risk of getting coronavirus because of where you work
  • have a health condition that means you're at high risk of serious complications of coronavirus

You can have the COVID-19 vaccine if you're breastfeeding.

Speak to a healthcare professional before you have the vaccination. They will discuss the benefits and risks of the COVID-19 vaccine with you.

You do not need to avoid pregnancy after vaccination. The vaccine cannot give you or your baby COVID-19.

Read the latest COVID-19 vaccine advice if you're pregnant, may get pregnant or are breastfeeding on GOV.UK

You can find out more about the vaccine on the NHS website at https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/coronavirus-vaccine/

  

A4 poster - helps to show the different priority groups

More information on the COVID-19 vaccine

Protection for social care staff leaflet

Protection for healthcare workers leaflet

Women of childbearing age, currently pregnant or breastfeeding leaflet

Women of childbearing age, currently pregnant or breastfeeding leaflet – large print

What to expect after your vaccine leaflet

What to expect after your vaccine leaflet – large print

Guide for adults leaflet

Guide for adult leaflet – large print

Vaccination sites

In Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent, we are working hard to deliver the vaccine to the nationally agreed priority groups as quickly as we can, as vaccines supplies are sent to us.

You will be contacted by your GP when it is time to get your vaccine, so please do not call your GP surgery or attend any of the vaccination sites without an appointment.

The majority of patients will not be vaccinated at their own GP surgery, but will be asked to go to a local vaccination centre – this may be a GP surgery or somewhere else that has been specially adapted to vaccinate large numbers of people. Each of our sites have been robustly assured and are following social distancing guidelines to help keep patients and staff safe.

As the vaccine supply increases, we are launching more sites over the coming weeks.

This is the largest vaccination programme in the history of the NHS and will take several months to complete. If you are in the priority groups, please be assured that you will be contacted when the vaccine is available for you. Thank you for your patience. 

Please wait to be contacted by the NHS for your vaccination appointment, no one will be missed and you will be invited over the coming weeks if you are in an at risk group, if you have a query about the vaccine that cannot be answered through the FAQs, please do not contact your GP or our media line. Please contact PALS

You can also find a Coronavirus Vaccine Programme FAQ pdfhere

 

Below you will find which community sites are vaccinating:  

 

Community vaccination sites

Appointments are by invite only and you will be contacted by the NHS when it is time to book your appointment. Please only attend if you have an appointment, as you will be turned away if you don’t have an appointment.

If you have received a letter and need to book an appointment through the national portal, please follow this link

 

Alderwood Medical Practice

Longford Rd, Cannock WS11 1QN

 

Pirelli Stadium, Burton Albion

Burton-on-Trent DE13 0AR

 

Ryecroft Surgery

Broad St, Newcastle-under-Lyme, Newcastle ST5 2BQ

 

Codsall Satellite Clinic

Covid Local Vaccination Service GP Practice, Histons Hill, Codsall, Wolverhampton, WV8 2ER

 

County Showground

Weston Rd, Stafford ST18 0BD

 

Smallthorne Branch Surgery

Smallthorne Health Centre, 2 Baden Rd, Stoke-on-Trent ST6 1SA

 

Longton Health Centre

Drayton Rd, Longton, Stoke-on-Trent ST3 1EQ

 

Loomer Road Surgery

Loomer Rd, Newcastle-under-Lyme, Newcastle ST5 7JS

 

Mossgreen Surgery

Bentille Neighbourhood Centre, Dawlish Dr, Stoke-on-Trent ST2 0EU

 

Chasetown Medical Centre

29-31 High St, Chasetown, Burntwood WS7 3XE

 

Birchenwood Sports Centre

Mount Road, Stoke-on-Trent, ST7 4GL

 

JCB Compact Products

Harewood Estate, Leek Rd, Cheadle, Stoke-on-Trent ST10 2JU

 

Michelin MAC Sports Conference Facility

Rosetree Ave, Newcastle-under-Lyme, Stoke-on-Trent ST4 6NL

 

Furlong Medical Centre

102 Furlong Rd, Tunstall, Stoke-on-Trent ST6 5UD

 

Park Medical Centre

Ball Haye Road, Leek, Staffordshire, ST13 6QR

 

Hanley Health Centre

Hanley Health Centre, Upper Huntbach Street, Hanley, Stoke-onTrent, Staffordshire, ST1 2BN

 

Horsefair Practice

Sandy Lane Health Centre, Sandy Ln, Rugeley WS15 2LB

 

St Pauls Church

131 Longton Hall Rd, Stoke-on-Trent ST3 2EL

 

Newcastle under Lyme College

Knutton Ln, Newcastle-under-Lyme, Newcastle ST5 2GB

 

Lichfield Cathedral

The Close, Lichfield WS13 7LD

 

Roman Way Hotel

Watling St, Cannock WS11 1SH

 

Coton Centre

Comberford Road, Tamworth, Staffordshire, B79 9AA

 

Biddulph Town Hall

Biddulph Town Hall, High Street, Biddulph, Stoke-on-trent, ST8 6AR

 

Larger vaccination sites

 

Daniel Platt Centre – Tunstall – find out more here

Appointments for the larger sites and pharmacies are bookable through the national portal or 119 only.  All appointments are by invite only and we are prioritising groups in line with JVCI advice

 

Pharmacy sites

 

Appointments are by invite only and you will be contacted by the NHS when it is time to book your appointment. Please only attend if you have an appointment, as you will be turned away if you don’t have an appointment.

  • Raven Pharmacy at Burslem Cricket Club, Greyhound Way, Burslem, Stoke-on-Trent ST6 3LQ
  • Cornwells Chemist, 126 Wardles Ln, Great Wyrley, Walsall WS6 6DZ
  • Millers Pharmacy, 114 Belgrave Rd, Longton, Stoke-on-Trent ST3 4LR
  • Packmoor Pharmacy, 1 Samuel St, Packmoor, Stoke-on-Trent ST7 4SR
  • Milton Pharmacy, 29 Millrise Rd, Milton, Stoke-on-Trent ST2 7BN
  • Lloyds Pharmacy, 9 Burton Square, Rising Brook, Stafford ST17 9LT
  • Holmcroft Pharmacy, 38 Holmcroft Rd, Stafford ST16 1JF

 

Covid-19 Vaccination priority groups

Here you will find a breakdown of the priority groups that we will be vaccinating

priority groups

COVID-19 vaccination programme for frontline health and care workers

The NHS in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent has made an excellent start to rolling out COVID-19 vaccines, with many of our over 80s, care home staff and residents and at risk health and care staff having already received the vaccine. Over the coming weeks more at risk people will be invited to come forward as the supply of the vaccine increases

Frontline health and care workers, who provide direct care for patients will be invited for a vaccine over the coming weeks and months. Similar to the NHS, we are asking all providers to risk assess their staff to identify those who are most at risk first. These are likely to be prioritised for the vaccine.

The national definition for frontline health and care workers is below:

  • Staff working on the vaccination programme

  • Staff who have frequent face-to-face contact with patients and who are directly involved in patient care in either secondary or primary care, mental health, urgent and emergency care and community settings

  • Laboratory, pathology and mortuary staff

  • Those working for a sub-contracted provider of facilities services such as portering or cleaning

  • Temporary, locum or ‘bank’ staff, including those working in the COVID-19 vaccination programme, students, trainees and volunteers who are working with patients

  • Frontline social care workers directly working with vulnerable people who need care and support irrespective of where they work (for example in hospital, people’s own homes, day centres, or supported housing); or who they are employed by (for example local government, NHS, independent sector or third sector).

If you believe that staff in your organisation meet the above definition as frontline health and care workers, we ask you to follow the below steps:

  • Identify a single point of contact for your organisation that the NHS can liaise with when vaccines are available and share their contact details with us

  • Do an assessment within your organisation to identify all your frontline health and care workers, please let us know how many there are

  • As part of your assessment, consider who should be prioritised for the vaccine first as this is a gradual roll out

  • Ensure you have all their contact details so they can be contacted quickly if we contact you/your single point of contact

Once you have this information, please complete the below form. We will then add you to our contact lists and when the time is right, we will contact you to offer the vaccine.

To complete the staff vaccination form, click here

If you experience any issues with the link please contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Further reading whilst you are waiting for the vaccine

In the meantime, you might find it helpful to share the following resources with your staff to explain more about the vaccine and why this is a gradual roll-out.

A4 poster - helps to show the different priority groups

More information on the COVID-19 vaccine

Protection for social care staff leaflet

Protection for healthcare workers leaflet

Women of childbearing age, currently pregnant or breastfeeding leaflet

What to expect after your vaccine leaflet

I believe I am a frontline health and care worker, but don’t meet this national definition?

If you are a frontline health and care worker, delivering direct care to the most at risk patients – the elderly and people who are clinically extremely shielding. Complete the form and we will assess whether you should be offered the vaccine during this first group.

What if I am not a frontline health and care worker?

We are following the national priority list, to determine who should be offered the vaccination first. Our aim is to save lives and protect the most vulnerable, and it is right that the vaccine is offered to these groups first.  

Once we have vaccinated the initial at risk groups, we will be offering vaccines to other key groups, including key workers. Eventually, the national aim is for all adults over 18 to receive the vaccination.

Please keep checking this website for more updates over the coming months.

This is the largest vaccination programme in the NHS’ history and will be a gradual roll-out as vaccine supplies increase.

Thank you for your patience as we roll-out this vaccine as quickly as possible to the most at risk groups.

Large vaccination centre Daniel Platt Centre – Tunstall

The Daniel Platt large vaccination centre is now open in Tunstall.

Daniel Platts Business Park, Charles Clowes Drive, Off Brownhills Road, Tunstall, Stoke-On-Trent, Staffordshire, ST6 4JU

The site will join the other community vaccination sites in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent and open its doors on Monday 25 January. 

Appointments are by invite only and you will be contacted by the NHS when it is time to book your appointment. Please only attend if you have an appointment, as you will be turned away if you don’t have an appointment.

Where is the Daniel Platt Business Park?

Where is the Daniel Platt Business Park

Travel by car

Travel by car

Directions from A500:

  • Exit the A500 towards Middleport
  • At the next roundabout take the next LEFT
  • Follow Brownhills Road and pass the entrance to Westport Lake on your left, and then Co-op Academy on your right.
  • Charles Clowes Drive is the next left after Canal Lane, and before the entrance to Aldi on the right.
  • Charles Clowes Drive bends round and down to the left where you will enter the Daniel Platt Business Park.

Sat Nav: Follow ST6 4RP

 

 

 

 

 

Where can I park

Where can I park?

Car parking is available on the Daniel Platt Business Park.  Alternative car parking is also available on Woodbank Street Car Park (30 spaces), Tunstall.  We are identifying other parking support from local businesses, and we will update this guidance regularly. 

Please do not arrive early as this will impact social distancing and will reduce the number of car park spaces available for those that need them. 

Where practical we would encourage people to walk if possible and appropriate.  Bike parking is available on site.

Travelling by public transport

Bus Services to the Vaccination Centre, Brownhills Road, Tunstall

Service

Nearest Stop

Shelter

Route

Frequency

Notes

D&G 94

Aldi – from Tunstall

Brownhills Business Park – from Newcastle

Yes

Newcastle - Bradwell - Tunstall - Chell - Biddulph - Congleton

Hourly

No evening or Sunday service

First Potteries 99

No

Newcastle - Wolstanton - Tunstall - Chell - Chell Heath / Bradeley

Every half hour

No evening or Sunday service

First Potteries 3/3A

Bottom of Tunstall High Street (Highgate) – from Hanley

Williamson Street /Washington Street – from Kidsgrove, Tunstall

Yes

Hanley (City Centre)- Burslem - Tunstall – Kidsgrove - Talke Pits / Crewe

5 minute walk to/from bus stops

Every 10 minutes

No evening service.

Every 30 minutes on Sundays

No

 

For city residents who do not live near to the direct bus routes listed above, it is recommended to transfer bus at the City Centre Bus Station. There are regular bus services operating in the city. A selection of areas is highlighted below for reference.

Locality

Services

Interchange

Service to/from Vaccination Centre

Packmoor, Newchapel

7

Kidsgrove

3/3A

Ball Green, Norton, Smallthorne

98

Burslem

Longport

3/3A

94/99

Baddeley Green, Sneyd Green

18

City Centre

3/3A

Milton

43

City Centre

3/3A

Birches Head

D&G 2

City Centre

3/3A

Ash Bank, Bucknall

32

City Centre

3/3A

Bentilee

11

City Centre

3/3A

Weston Coyney, Meir, Meir Park, Longton

6/6A

City Centre

3/3A

Newstead, Blurton, Heron Cross

23

City Centre

3/3A

Trentham, Hanford, Trent Vale

22

Newcastle

94/99

Oakhill, Stoke

21

City Centre

3/3A

 

Rail Service to the Vaccination Centre, Brownhills Road, Tunstall

There is an hourly service to Longport Station from Blythe Bridge, Longton, Stoke-on-Trent and Kidsgrove stations, operated by East Midlands Railway. Please check for current timetables during lockdown. The station is approximately a 20 minute walk to/from the vaccination centre but services 94 and 99 stop directly by the station on Longport Road (bus shelters in each direction) and also close to the vaccination centre.

When travelling on public transport don’t forget to follow social distancing guidance and wear a face covering.

If you are in an at risk group and are invited to attend the large vaccination centres, but unable to travel to there, rest assured you will also be contacted by your GP to attend one of the local community sites over the coming weeks. If you would prefer to wait and be seen at one of the community sites, you can ignore the national email and wait to be contacted by your GP practice. If you will struggle to attend one of the community sites, please speak to your GP practice when you are called or invited to book an appointment.

Helpful information before attending your appointment

You can help your NHS by following the below guidance to reduce delays and ensure a positive experience when having your vaccination.

Arrive on time for your appointment – not too early or too late

When arriving for your appointment, it is important to join the queue at your appointment time.  If you arrive early, please remain in your vehicle until your appointment time. You will only cause delays if you join the queue too early.

When joining the queue or entering the centre please remember Hands, Face, Space. Continue to sanitise your hands, wear a face covering and always keep 2 metres apart from others.

Important points to prepare

Before your appointment it is important to have your NHS number ready and remove any outer garments when inside the building. 

To help the process run smoothly, please wear clothing that allows easy access to your arm, this will help the vaccinators and will reduce queues.   

After your vaccination

We will ask you to wait at the centre for 15 minutes after your vaccination. Please allow for this time when planning your appointment.

The vaccine cannot give you COVID-19 infection, and a full course will reduce your chance of becoming seriously ill. We do not yet know whether it will stop you from catching and passing on the virus, but we do expect it to reduce this risk. So, it is still important to follow the guidance in your local area to protect those around you.

To protect yourself and your family, friends and colleagues you still need to:

  • practice social distancing
  • wear a face mask
  • wash your hands carefully and frequently
  • follow the current guidance
  • Remember Hands, Face, Space

When will I be invited for my second dose?

Don’t forget that you will need a second dose of the vaccine, this will ensure that you have the most protection from catching the virus. Rest assured, you will be contacted when it is time for your second dose. This will be within 12 weeks of you receiving your first dose of the vaccine.  

For more advice on what to expect after your vaccine, please refer to the ‘What to expect after your vaccine leaflet’

Coronavirus Vaccination Programme in Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent  

Follow this link to find out more about our Vaccination Programme

How will I be contacted?

The NHS will contact you when it's your turn to have the coronavirus (COVID-19) vaccination.

The vaccine is being offered at larger vaccination centres, pharmacies and some local NHS services such as hospitals or GP surgeries.

When it's your turn, you'll be contacted by letter, text or email with information on how to book your appointment.

More people are being offered the vaccine every week.

If you're invited to have your vaccination at a larger vaccination centre or at a pharmacy, you'll get a letter.

If you're invited to have your vaccination at a local centre such as a hospital or GP surgery, you'll usually get a text or email. You may sometimes get a letter.

You can choose to go to a larger vaccination centre or pharmacy, or wait to be invited to go to a local NHS service. More places are opening all the time.

If you have received a letter but not booked an appointment

You may get a phone call from the NHS Immunisation Management Service.

This will be a reminder to book your COVID-19 vaccination appointments.

The person you speak to will see if you need any help and support.

They will not call you to book appointments over the phone.

Frequently asked questions

You can also find answers to some of the frequently asked questions here

www.gov.uk/coronavirus

Front line health and social care staff

Information for front line health and social care staff can be found here.  Employers who employ front line health and social care staff can register their staff for the coronavirus vaccine.  This is for all employees who are front line health and social care staff only

How to avoid catching or spreading COVID-19

Do

  • Wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds
  • Always wash your hands when you get home or into work
  • Use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
  • Put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands afterwards
  • Try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell

Don't

  • Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean

Stay alert

We can all help control the virus if we all stay alert. This means you must:

  • Stay at home as much as possible
  • Work from home if you can
  • Limit contact with other people
  • Keep your distance if you go out (2 metres apart where possible)
  • Wash your hands regularly

Self-isolate if you or anyone in your household has symptoms.

Face coverings

If you are going into a hospital, or into a GP practice in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent, either as a patient or a visitor, you must now wear a face covering at all times. If you do not have a face covering, the hospital will provide one for you on arrival. You must also wear a face covering when travelling by public transport. This will help to reduce the spread of coronavirus.

Face coverings are also mandatory in enclosed spaces including all shops and supermarkets. Exemptions to this include anyone under the age of 11, or those with disabilities, or hidden health conditions such as breathing difficulties, mental health conditions or autism. 

Face coverings are also mandatory in places such as nail, beauty and hair salons, barbers, cinemas, museums and many other places. The full list of places can be found here.

People are not required to prove they are exempt and it is for individuals to choose how they would want to communicate this to others. For those who would feel more comfortable showing something that says they do not have to wear a face covering, exemption cards are available to print or display on mobile phones.

Full guidance on face coverings can be found here

The evidence suggests that wearing a face covering does not protect you, but it may protect others if you are infected but have not developed symptoms.

It is important to note that a face covering is not the same as a facemask as the surgical masks or respirators used as part of personal protective equipment by healthcare and other workers. These supplies must continue to be reserved for those who need it.

The type of face covering the majority of the public need, can be something as simple as a scarf or a bandana or, you could make one at home – some simple instructions can be found here.

What is the new advice?

  • If you have symptoms of COVID-19 (a new continuous cough, a high temperature and/or change/loss to your usual sense of taste or smell) you and your household should isolate at home: wearing a face covering does not change this

  • When visiting a hospital or GP practice in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent as a patient or visitor you should wear a face covering at all times

  • When entering a shop or supermarket you should wear a face covering at all times. You will also need to wear a face covering in a lot of other places, such as nail, hair and beauty salons, barbers, cinema and museums. You will also need to wear a face covering in bars and restaurants when you are not seated. The full list of places can be found here
  • When travelling by public transport you must wear a face covering at all times
  • If you can, wear a face covering in other enclosed spaces where social distancing isn’t possible and where you will come into contact with people you do not normally meet
  • A cloth face covering should cover your mouth and nose while allowing you to breathe comfortably
  • It is important to wash your hands or use hand sanitiser before putting it on and taking it off
  • Remember to put on your face covering before you enter the enclosed space
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth and store used face coverings in a plastic bag until you have an opportunity to wash them
  • Once removed, make sure you clean any surfaces the face covering has touched.
  • Face coverings should not be used by children under the age of 2 or those who may find it difficult to manage them correctly for example primary school age children unassisted, or those with respiratory conditions
  • People who have problems breathing while wearing a face covering should not wear one
  • You do not need to wear face coverings if you are outdoors or while exercising

Treatment for coronavirus

There is currently no specific treatment for coronavirus.

Antibiotics do not help, as they do not work against viruses.

Treatment aims to relieve the symptoms while your body fights the illness.

You'll need to stay in isolation, away from other people, until you have recovered.

National COVID-19 information and advice

There is lots of information available nationally about the COVID-19 pandemic.

If you think you have symptoms

Stay at home for 10 days if you have either:

  • a high temperature – you feel hot to touch on your chest or back
  • a new, continuous cough – this means you've started coughing repeatedly
  • a loss of, or change in, your normal sense of smell or taste (anosmia)

Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital.

You do not need to contact 111 to tell them you're staying at home.

Testing for coronavirus is now available to everyone in the UK. See the 'testing' section below to find out more about this.

Read more advice about staying at home.

Urgent advice

Use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service if:

  • you feel you cannot cope with your symptoms at home
  • your condition gets worse
  • your symptoms do not get better after 7 days

Use the 111 online coronavirus service

Only call 111 if you cannot get help online.

COVID-19 and your health

If you would like more information about coronavirus, symptoms and information on how to self-isolate, visit the NHS England website.

You can also find the latest guidance from the government on the government website.

It is very important to look after your mental wellbeing at this time. Public Health England has released advice for during the coronavirus pandemic. Visit the Every Mind Matters webpage for more information.

If you're pregnant and worried about coronavirus, you can get advice about coronavirus and pregnancy from the Royal College of Obstretricians and Gynaecologists.

It can be difficult to explain to children what coronavirus is and why the current measures are in place. This fact sheet for children can help you to communicate with youngsters. Childrens Coronavirus Fact Sheet.

You can find information in alternative formats and languages in the ‘useful resources’ section below.

Local COVID alert level - National Lockdown 05th January 2021

Summary: what you can and cannot do during the national lockdown

To find out more visit Gov.uk

You must stay at home. The single most important action we can all take is to stay at home to protect the NHS and save lives.

You should follow this guidance immediately. The law will be updated to reflect these new rules.

Leaving home

You must not leave, or be outside of your home except where necessary. You may leave the home to:

  • shop for basic necessities, for you or a vulnerable person
  • go to work, or provide voluntary or charitable services, if you cannot reasonably do so from home
  • exercise with your household (or support bubble) or one other person, this should be limited to once per day, and you should not travel outside your local area.
  • meet your support bubble or childcare bubble where necessary, but only if you are legally permitted to form one
  • seek medical assistance or avoid injury, illness or risk of harm (including domestic abuse)
  • attend education or childcare - for those eligible

Colleges, primary and secondary schools will remain open only for vulnerable children and the children of critical workers. All other children will learn remotely until February half term. Early Years settings remain open.

Higher Education provision will remain online until mid February for all except future critical worker courses.

If you do leave home for a permitted reason, you should always stay local in the village, town, or part of the city where you live. You may leave your local area for a legally permitted reason, such as for work.

If you are clinically extremely vulnerable you should only go out for medical appointments, exercise or if it is essential. You should not attend work

Meeting others

You cannot leave your home to meet socially with anyone you do not live with or are not in a support bubble with (if you are legally permitted to form one).

You may exercise on your own, with one other person, or with your household or support bubble.

You should not meet other people you do not live with, or have formed a support bubble with, unless for a permitted reason.

Stay 2 metres apart from anyone not in your household.

Hands. Face. Space.

Approximately 1 in 3 people who have coronavirus have no symptoms and could be spreading it without realising it.

Remember - ‘Hands. Face. Space.’

  • hands – wash your hands regularly and for at least 20 seconds
  • face – wear a face covering in indoor settings where social distancing may be difficult, and where you will come into contact with people you do not normally meet
  • space – stay 2 metres apart from people you do not live with where possible, or 1 metre with extra precautions in place (such as wearing face coverings)

In all circumstances, you should follow the guidance on meeting others safely.

When you can leave home

You must not leave or be outside of your home except where you have a ‘reasonable excuse’. This will be put in law. The police can take action against you if you leave home without a ‘reasonable excuse’, and issue you with a fine (Fixed Penalty Notice).

You can be given a Fixed Penalty Notice of £200 for the first offence, doubling for further offences up to a maximum of £6,400.

A ‘reasonable excuse’ includes:

  • Work - you can only leave home for work purposes where it is unreasonable for you to do your job from home, including but not limited to people who work within critical national infrastructure, construction or manufacturing that require in-person attendance
  • Volunteering - you can also leave home to provide voluntary or charitable services.
  • Essential activities - you can leave home to buy things at shops or obtain services. You may also leave your home to do these things on behalf of a disabled or vulnerable person or someone self-isolating.
  • Education and childcare - You can only leave home for education, registered childcare, and supervised activities for children where they are eligible to attend. Access to education and children’s activities for school-aged pupils is restricted. See further information on education and childcare. People can continue existing arrangements for contact between parents and children where they live apart. This includes childcare bubbles.
  • Meeting others and care - You can leave home to visit people in your support bubble ( if you are legally permitted to form one), to provide informal childcare for children under 14 as part of a childcare bubble (for example, to enable parents to work, and not to enable social contact between adults), to provide care for disabled or vulnerable people, to provide emergency assistance, to attend a support group (of up to 15 people), or for respite care where that care is being provided to a vulnerable person or a person with a disability, or is a short break in respect of a looked-after child.
  • Exercise - You can continue to exercise alone, with one other person or with your household or support bubble. This should be limited to once per day, and you should not travel outside your local area.You should maintain social distancing. See exercising and meeting other people.
  • Medical reasons - You can leave home for a medical reason, including to get a COVID-19 test, for medical appointments and emergencies.
  • Harm and compassionate visits - you can leave home to be with someone who is giving birth, to avoid injury or illness or to escape risk of harm (such as domestic abuse). You can also leave home to visit someone who is dying or someone in a care home (if permitted under care home guidance), hospice, or hospital, or to accompany them to a medical appointment.
  • Animal welfare reasons – you can leave home for animal welfare reasons, such as to attend veterinary services for advice or treatment.
  • Communal worship and life events - You can leave home to attend or visit a place of worship for communal worship, a funeral or event related to a death, a burial ground or a remembrance garden, or to attend a wedding ceremony. You should follow the guidance on the safe use of places of worship and must not mingle with anyone outside of your household or support bubble when attending a place of worship.Weddings, funerals and religious, belief-based or commemorative events linked to someone’s death are all subject to limits on the numbers that can attend, and weddings and civil ceremonies may only take place in exceptional circumstances.

There are further reasonable excuses. For example, you may leave home to fulfil legal obligations or to carry out activities related to buying, selling, letting or renting a residential property, or where it is reasonably necessary for voting in an election or referendum.

Exercising and meeting other people

You should minimise time spent outside your home.

It is against the law to meet socially with family or friends unless they are part of your household or support bubble. You can only leave your home to exercise, and not for the purpose of recreation or leisure (e.g. a picnic or a social meeting). This should be limited to once per day, and you should not travel outside your local area.

You can exercise in a public outdoor place:

  • by yourself
  • with the people you live with
  • with your support bubble (if you are legally permitted to form one)
  • in a childcare bubble where providing childcare
  • or, when on your own, with 1 person from another household

Public outdoor places include:

  • parks, beaches, countryside accessible to the public, forests
  • public gardens (whether or not you pay to enter them)
  • the grounds of a heritage site
  • playgrounds

Outdoor sports venues, including tennis courts, golf courses and swimming pools, must close.

When around other people, stay 2 metres apart from anyone not in your household - meaning the people you live with - or your support bubble. Where this is not possible, stay 1 metre apart with extra precautions (e.g. wearing a face covering).

You must wear a face covering in many indoor settings, such as shops or places of worship where these remain open, and on public transport, unless you are exempt. This is the law. Read guidance on face coverings.

Support and childcare bubbles

You have to meet certain eligibility rules to form a support or childcare bubble. This means not everyone will be able to form a bubble.

A support bubble is a support network which links two households. You can form a support bubble with another household of any size only if you meet the eligibility rules.

It is against the law to form a support bubble if you do not follow these rules.

You are permitted to leave your home to visit your support bubble (and to stay overnight with them). However, if you form a support bubble, it is best if this is with a household who live locally. This will help prevent the virus spreading from an area where more people are infected.

If you live in a household with anyone aged under 14, you can form a childcare bubble. This allows friends or family from one other household to provide informal childcare.

You must not meet socially with your childcare bubble, and must avoid seeing members of your childcare and support bubbles at the same time.

There is separate guidance for support bubbles and childcare bubbles.

If you break the rules

The police can take action against you if you meet in larger groups. This includes breaking up illegal gatherings and issuing fines (fixed penalty notices).

You can be given a Fixed Penalty Notice of £200 for the first offence, doubling for further offences up to a maximum of £6,400. If you hold, or are involved in holding, an illegal gathering of over 30 people, the police can issue fines of £10,000.

Protecting people more at risk from coronavirus

If you are clinically vulnerable, you could be at higher risk of severe illness from coronavirus. There is additional advice for people who are clinically extremely vulnerable to coronavirus. Those who are clinically extremely vulnerable should not attend work, school, college or university, and limit the time you spend outside the home. You should only go out for medical appointments, exercise or if it is essential.

Travel

You must not leave your home unless you have a reasonable excuse (for example, for work or education purposes). If you need to travel you should stay local – meaning avoiding travelling outside of your village, town or the part of a city where you live – and look to reduce the number of journeys you make overall. The list of reasons you can leave your home and area include, but are not limited to:

  • work, where you cannot reasonably work from home
  • accessing education and for caring responsibilities
  • visiting those in your support bubble – or your childcare bubble for childcare
  • visiting hospital, GP and other medical appointments or visits where you have had an accident or are concerned about your health
  • buying goods or services that you need, but this should be within your local area wherever possible
  • outdoor exercise. This should be done locally wherever possible, but you can travel a short distance within your area to do so if necessary (for example, to access an open space)
  • attending the care and exercise of an animal, or veterinary services

If you need to travel, walk or cycle where possible, and plan ahead and avoid busy times and routes on public transport. This will allow you to practice social distancing while you travel.

Avoid car sharing with anyone from outside your household or your support bubble. See the guidance on car sharing.

If you need to use public transport, you should follow the safer travel guidance.

Going to work

You may only leave your home for work if you cannot reasonably work from home.

Where people cannot work from home - including, but not limited to, people who work in critical national infrastructure, construction, or manufacturing - they should continue to travel to their workplace. This is essential to keeping the country operating and supporting sectors and employers.

Public sector employees working in essential services, including childcare or education, should continue to go into work.

Where it is necessary for you to work in other people’s homes - for example, for nannies, cleaners or tradespeople - you can do so. Otherwise, you should avoid meeting for work in a private home or garden, where COVID-19 Secure measures may not be in place.

Going to school, college and university

Colleges, primary (reception onwards) and secondary schools will remain open for vulnerable children and the children of critical workers. All other children will learn remotely until February half term.

In the circumstances, we do not think it is possible for all exams in the summer to go ahead as planned. We will accordingly be working with Ofqual to consult rapidly to put in place alternative arrangements that will allow students to progress fairly.

Public exams and vocational assessments scheduled to take place in January will go ahead as planned.

Universities

Those students who are undertaking training and study for the following courses should return to face to face learning as planned and be tested twice, upon arrival or self-isolate for ten days:

  • Medicine & dentistry
  • Subjects allied to medicine/health
  • Veterinary science
  • Education (initial teacher training)
  • Social work
  • Courses which require Professional, Statutory and Regulatory Body (PSRB) assessments and or mandatory activity which is scheduled for January and which cannot be rescheduled (your university will notify you if this applies to you).

Students who do not study these courses should remain where they are wherever possible, and start their term online, as facilitated by their university until at least Mid-February. This includes students on other practical courses not on the list above.

We have previously published guidance to universities and students on how students can return safely to higher education in the spring term. This guidance sets out how we will support higher education providers to enable students that need to return to do so as safely as possible following the winter break.

If you live at university, you should not move back and forward between your permanent home and student home during term time.

Childcare

There are several ways that parents and carers can continue to access childcare:

  • Early Years settings (including nurseries and childminders) remain open
  • Vulnerable children and children of critical workers can continue to use registered childcare, childminders and other childcare activities (including wraparound care)
  • parents are able to form a childcare bubble with one other household for the purposes of informal childcare, where the child is under 14. This is mainly to enable parents to work, and must not be used to enable social contact between adults
  • some households will also be able to benefit from being in a support bubble
  • nannies will be able to continue to provide services, including in the home

Care home visits

Visits to care homes can take place with arrangements such as substantial screens, visiting pods, or behind windows. Close-contact indoor visits are not allowed. No visits will be permitted in the event of an outbreak.

You should check the guidance on visiting care homes during COVID-19 to find out how visits should be conducted. Residents cannot meet people indoors on a visit out (for example, to visit their relatives in the family home). There is separate guidance for those in supported living.

Financial support

Wherever you live, you may be able to get financial help

Businesses and venues which can remain open

Other businesses and venues are permitted to stay open, following COVID-19 secure guidelines. Businesses providing essential goods and services can stay open. The full list of these businesses can be found in the guidance on closing certain businesses and venues in England, but includes:

  • essential retail such as food shops, supermarkets, pharmacies, garden centres, building merchants and suppliers of building products and off-licences
  • market stalls selling essential retail may also stay open
  • businesses providing repair services may also stay open, where they primarily offer repair services
  • petrol stations, automatic (but not manual) car washes, vehicle repair and MOT services, bicycle shops, and taxi and vehicle hire businesses
  • banks, building societies, post offices, short-term loan providers and money transfer businesses
  • funeral directors
  • laundrettes and dry cleaners
  • medical and dental services
  • vets and retailers of products and food for the upkeep and welfare of animals
  • animal rescue centres, boarding facilities and animal groomers (may continue to be used for animal welfare, rather than aesthetic purposes)
  • agricultural supplies shops
  • mobility and disability support shops
  • storage and distribution facilities
  • car parks, public toilets and motorway service areas
  • outdoor playgrounds
  • outdoor parts of botanical gardens and heritage sites for exercise
  • places of worship
  • crematoriums and burial grounds

 

 

If your mental health is suffering and you need help, please get in touch as soon as possible:

For Stoke-on-Trent and North Staffordshire, call 0300 123 0907 or visit https://www.combined.nhs.uk/get-in-touch/contact-us/

For the rest of Staffordshire, please call 0808 196 3002 or visit https://www.mpft.nhs.uk/emergency-help

Testing

Anyone experiencing a new, continuous cough, a high temperature, or change in your normal sense of smell or taste can book a test by visiting www.nhs.uk/coronavirus

Those unable to access the internet can call 119 in England and Wales or 0300 303 2713 in Scotland and Northern Ireland to book a test.

All members of their household must also self-isolate according to current guidelines, unless the symptomatic individual receives a negative test result.

The two local Regional Testing Centres are located at Stoke City Football Club's South Car Park in Stoke-on-Trent and the Stafford Education and Enterprise Park, Beaconside, in Stafford. People must visit the website above in order to book an appointment at this site. Health and care staff can also use these sites. 

There are also local testing sites at Newcastle Ryecroft Car Park, Keele University Science and Innovation Park, Beecroft Road Car Park in Cannock, Burton Town Hall and also at Fenton Manor Car Park in Stoke-on-Trent.

In addition to this, there are several mobile testing units which move around across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent. These can also be booked on the national portal via the link above. 

Post-COVID recovery (‘long-COVID’)

COVID-19 affects different people in different ways. It can harm virtually every part of our body – inside and out.

This is why there are so many different symptoms and why some people take much longer to get better than others.

Post-COVID symptoms

People who test positive for COVID-19 and experience symptoms that stay with them for more than 12 weeks are likely to be suffering from what we now call ‘long-COVID’ or ‘post-COVID syndrome’. They might just have one or two symptoms, or they might have several. These can include:

  • Breathlessness or shortness of breath
  • Feeling weak and having joint stiffness
  • Increased phlegm
  • Having a poor appetite, changes in taste
  • Difficulties swallowing
  • Changes to speech
  • Unintentional weight loss
  • Feeling very tired and having a lack of energy
  • Being unable to sleep well
  • Feeling low in mood, anxious
  • Having difficulty remembering things or doing basic tasks
  • Feeling more confused than normal (delirium)
  • Having flashbacks to when you were ill
  • Worrying about your financial situation

Post-COVID support

COVID-19 is a new condition. Experts and health care professionals are working hard to learn more about COVID-19, the extent of its impact and the best way to manage it. However, we already know a lot about recovery and rehabilitation from other conditions that we can build upon.

The NHS and experts in the different health conditions have produced a wide selection of helpful information and advice that covers each of the currently known symptoms of coronavirus and long-COVID. You can find guides, checklists, videos, apps and much more at www.yourcovidrecovery.nhs.uk

Finding, or asking someone else to help you find information and advice about the different symptoms is the first step. This will help you to feel more comfortable at first and eventually help you to fully recover. For example, the locally-produced leaflet Supporting your recovery journey, available at www.mpft.nhs.uk/service-users-carers/coronavirus-information/coronavirus-resources covers many of the symptoms that people are experiencing with long-COVID and it contains lots of ideas, suggestions and top tips to overcome them.

If you have symptoms that aren’t new or are worsening and which haven’t gone away after 28 days, you will soon be able to access further support. More information will be available about this soon.

There are also some things you can do whatever your symptoms. Here are five top tips that will help you to feel better and begin your recovery:

  • Drink water to keep hydrated
  • Eat well - little and often helps, include protein at each meal
  • Set realistic recovery goals
  • Move more. Gradually increase the amount you do
  • Connect with family, friends, carers, healthcare professionals

If you have worsening or new symptoms within 28 days of a positive COVID-19 test, or if you are having difficulty in following self-care advice, you should contact your GP.

If you have sudden worsening of shortness of breath, severe chest pain or are coughing up blood then call 999.

Further Information and online resources

 

FAQs

What is the evidence for the treatment of Long COVID?

The National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) has published the scope for the forthcoming guideline on Post-COVID Syndrome (Long COVID) which is due to be published by the end of the year.

The scope outlines what areas the guideline will cover, including alerts to prompt a referral for specialist assessment or management, pharmacological and non-pharmacological interventions to improve physical or mental health symptoms following acute COVID-19, and how best to deliver long-COVID recovery and rehabilitation services.

The draft guidelines are being consulted on with stakeholders, including relevant national professional and user/patient and carer groups, ahead of publication. The publication of the guideline is likely to influence development of future long-COVID services.

What are the Long COVID assessment services?

The NHS has invested £10 million to meet the additional demand created by ongoing COVID-19 symptoms in a proportion of the population. This investment will help local services in every part of the country bring together the right professionals to provide physical, cognitive and psychological assessments for those experiencing suspected post-COVID syndrome (long-COVID), so that they can be referred to the right support.    

What will the Long COVID assessment services do?

Long-COVID assessment services are designed to complement and fit in with existing services, so will vary in their set-up depending on services available in the area. As per the national specification for setting up Long COVID assessment services, each service will, as a minimum:

  • Be available to all affected patients who need it, whether they were previously hospitalised for COVID-19 or not and whether or not they have had a positive COVID-19 test.
  • Have access to a multidisciplinary team of professionals to account for the multi-system nature of post-COVID syndrome
  • Support collaboration across localities where patients’ needs require this
  • Have age appropriate arrangements in place for managing children and young people with post-COVID syndrome including support for psychological needs
  • Have access to diagnostic tests
  • Ensure coverage of the population in that geography
  • Have a plan for ensuring equity of access
  • Have a local communications plan for raising awareness within the clinical community
  • Have an external communication plan for informing and raising awareness with patients

How will these services be developed?

The funding has been allocated to each region to develop post-COVID assessment services in a way that works best for patient populations and can be established in the timeliest way. Some services were already being established due to high demand in the area, some will be adapted from existing services and some will be newly established. As stated above, all services must adhere to the national specification for longCOVID assessment services.

The Long COVID assessment services are one initial element to support people with long-COVID, and as well as the support of existing primary care, specialist and rehabilitation support the online platform Your COVID Recovery has been developed.

This is a digital, interactive and tailored recovery programme that has been developed by experts to provide rehabilitation support for post-COVID-19 patients to manage their recovery at home. The public facing information website launched in July 2020, providing general information on all aspects of recovering from COVID-19 including physical, emotional and psychological wellbeing, advice on recovery and information for families and carers. 

Clinically extremely vulnerable 'shielding' patients

While previous shielding guidance helped protect those most at risk from COVID-19, many people reported that they found the advice very restrictive.

Since the introduction of shielding, many new measures have been introduced in our communities, including the rule of 6, COVID-secure workplaces, and the widespread use of face coverings, all of which have reduced the need for such restrictive shielding advice.

The government also has better data on new infections and has introduced local COVID alert levels, with rules and advice based on the level of risk in a local area. This updated guidance offers additional advice to the clinically extremely vulnerable over and above local COVID alert level guidance. This new guidance aims to strike a better balance between providing practical steps to help keep you safe while reducing some of the potentially harmful impacts on mental and social wellbeing that were associated with previous strict shielding. It sets out the steps clinically extremely vulnerable people can take to protect themselves at each local COVID alert level.

In the future, the government will only reintroduce formal shielding advice in the very worst affected local areas and for a limited period of time. This will only apply to some, but not all, very high alert level areas and will be based on advice from the Chief Medical Officer. The government will write to you separately to inform you if you are advised to shield. You are not advised to follow formal shielding advice again unless you receive a new shielding notification advising you to do so. From now, refer to the new local COVID alert levels for your area.

Find the full guidance here.

 

Information from councils, voluntary sector and other partners (including where to get help and support)

Local authorities

Local Authorities across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent are working hard to support local people and businesses during the coronavirus outbreak. You can find lots of useful information here, from guidance on business grants/support, to advice on what you can do to help out in your local communities.

Stoke-on-Trent City Council

Information from Stoke-on-Trent City Council, including rent/financial advice for tenants, business support, waste services and much more can be found here.

Stoke-on-Trent City Council has also teamed up with several voluntary sector organisations, including VAST, to start #StokeonTrentTogether, the local COVID-19 support network. If you are looking for help, or wanting to support others in Stoke-on-Trent, please visit the website to find out more.

Staffordshire County Council

There is a lot of information available on the Staffordshire County Council website. This includes information about financial support for individuals or community groups, information about mental health and wellbeing and much more.  

You can find all of this, plus information on how you can get help if you need it or how you can volunteer to help, here.

Local district and borough councils

The individual links below include local information about things such as business grants, waste collections and support for vulnerable people.

Cannock Chase District Council

East Staffordshire Borough Council

Lichfield District Council

Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Council

South Staffordshire District Council

Staffordshire Borough Council

Staffordshire Moorlands District Council

Tamworth Borough Council

NHS Test and Trace

The government has launched the NHS Test and Trace service as part of the COVID-19 recovery strategy. This will mean anyone with symptoms will be tested and their close contacts will be traced. New guidance means those who have been in close contact with someone who tests positive must isolate for 10 days, even if they have no symptoms, to avoid unknowingly spreading the virus.

Anyone who tests positive for coronavirus will be contacted by NHS Test and Trace and will need to share information about their recent interactions. This could include household members, people with whom they have been in direct contact, or within 2 metres for more than 15 minutes.

If those in isolation develop symptoms, they can book a test at nhs.uk/coronavirus or by calling 119. If they test positive, they must continue to stay at home for 10 days or until their symptoms have passed. If they test negative, they must complete the 10-day isolation period.

Members of their household will not have to stay at home unless the person identified becomes symptomatic, at which point they must also self-isolate for 10 days to avoid unknowingly spreading the virus.

The NHS test and trace service will help to control the rate of reproduction (R), reduce the spread of the infection and save lives. By playing your part through the actions set out below, you will directly help to contain the virus by reducing its spread. This means that, thanks to your efforts, we will be able to go as far as it is safe to go in easing lockdown measures.

Easy read and large print information/materials can be found in the 'useful resources' section below.

You can help in the following ways:

  • if you develop symptoms, you must continue to follow the rules to self-isolate with other members of your household and order a test to find out if you have coronavirus
  • if you test positive for COVID-19, you must share information promptly about your recent contacts through the NHS test and trace service to help us alert other people who may need to self-isolate
  • if you have had close recent contact with someone who has COVID-19, you must self-isolate if the NHS test and trace service advises you to do so

This specific guidance applies in England only.

If the NHS test and trace service contacts you, the service will use text messages, email or phone.

Contact tracers will:

  • call you from 0300 013 5000
  • send you text messages from ‘NHS’
  • ask you to sign into the NHS test and trace contact-tracing website
  • ask for your full name and date of birth to confirm your identity, and postcode to offer support while self-isolating
  • ask about the COVID-19 symptoms you have been experiencing
  • ask you to provide the name, telephone number and/or email address of anyone you have had close contact with in the 2 days prior to your symptoms starting
  • ask if anyone you have been in contact with is under 18 or lives outside of England

Contact tracers will never:

  • ask you to dial a premium rate number to speak to us (for example, those starting 09 or 087)
  • ask you to make any form of payment or purchase a product or any kind
  • ask for any details about your bank account
  • ask for your social media identities or login details, or those of your contacts
  • ask you for any passwords or PINs, or ask you to set up any passwords or PINs over the phone
  • disclose any of your personal or medical information to your contacts
  • provide medical advice on the treatment of any potential coronavirus symptoms
  • ask you to download any software to your PC or ask you to hand over control of your PC, smartphone or tablet to anyone else
  • ask you to access any website that does not belong to the government or NHS

They will ask you:

  • if you have family members or other household members living with you. In line with the medical advice they must remain in self-isolation for the rest of the 14-day period from when your symptoms began
  • if you have had any close contact with anyone other than members of your household. We are interested in in the 48 hours before you developed symptoms and the time since you developed symptoms. Close contact means:
    • having face-to-face contact with someone (less than 1 metre away)
    • spending more than 15 minutes within 2 metres of someone
    • travelling in a car or other small vehicle with someone (even on a short journey) or close to them on a plane
  • if you work in – or have recently visited – a setting with other people (for example, a GP surgery, a school or a workplace)

They will ask you to provide, where possible, the names and contact details (for example, email address, telephone number) for the people you have had close contact with. As with your own details these will be held in strict confidence and will be kept and used only in line with data protection laws.

How NHS Test and Trace works for someone with COVID-19 symptoms

  • isolate: As soon as you experience COVID-19 symptoms, you should self-isolate for at least 10 days. Anyone else in your household should self-isolate for 10 days from when you started having symptoms.
  • test: You should order a coronavirus test immediately at uk/coronavirus or call 119 if you have no internet access.
  • results: If your test is positive you must complete the remainder of your 10-day self-isolation. Anyone in your household should also complete self-isolation for 10 days from when you started having symptoms. Failure to self-isolate for the full time-period can result in a fine, starting from £1,000. If your test is negative, you and other household members no longer need to isolate.
  • share contacts: If you test positive for coronavirus, the NHS Test and Trace service will send you a text or email alert or call you within 24 hours with instructions of how to share details of people you have been in close, recent contact with and places you have visited. It is important that you respond as soon as possible so that we can give appropriate advice to those who need it. You will be asked to do this online via a secure website or you will be called by one of our NHS contact tracers.

How NHS Test and Trace works for those contacted if you have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19

  • alert: You will be alerted by the NHS Test and Trace service if you have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. The alert will come either by text or email and you’ll need to log on to the NHS Test and Trace website, which is the easiest way for you and the service to communicate with each other – but, if not, a trained call handler will talk you through what you need to do. Under 18’s will get a phone call and a parent or guardian will be asked to give permission for the call to continue.
  • isolate: You will be asked to begin self-isolation for up to 10 days, depending on when you last came into contact with the person who has tested positive. It’s really important to do this even if you don’t feel unwell, because it can take up to 10 days for the symptoms to develop. This will be crucial to avoid you unknowingly spreading the virus to others. Failure to self-isolate for the full time-period can result in a fine, starting from £1,000. Your household doesn’t need to self-isolate with you, but they must take extra care to follow the guidance on social distancing and washing your hands.
  • test if needed: If you develop symptoms of COVID-19, other members of your household should self-isolate at home and you should book a COVID-19 test at https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/ or call 119 if you have no internet access. If your test is positive you must continue to stay at home for 10 days. If your test is negative, you must still complete your 10 day self-isolation period because the virus may not be detectable yet.

For more information visit: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/nhs-test-and-trace-how-it-works.

The NHS COVID-19 app

The new NHS COVID-19 app, now available to download for free in England and Wales, is the fastest way to see if you’re at risk from COVID-19. The faster you know, the quicker you can alert and protect your loved ones and community.

The app has a number of tools to protect you, including contact tracing, local area alerts and venue check-in. It uses proven technology from Apple and Google, designed to protect every user’s privacy.

Temporary changes to NHS services in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent

Due to the increasing number of coronavirus cases in the UK, our local NHS Trusts, like many all over the country, have taken a range of measures to ensure that the hospitals, staff and patients remain safe. You can keep up to date with the ongoing updates via the links below:

University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust (UHNM) updates

Midlands Partnership NHS Foundation Trust updates

University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust updates

You can also find updates from North Staffordshire Combined NHS Trust via the updates page, here: North Staffordshire Combined NHS Trust coronavirus news

Useful resources

The Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent CCGs are producing weekly podcasts regarding coronavirus. You can listen to the podcasts here.

The following resources are available to support people with a learning disability and their families and carers:

We have also produced a guide for vulnerable people who might need extra support with things such as food parcels, collecting medicines, etc. due to coronavirus. You can find the guide, here: Guide for vulnerable people 

Public Health England has published a guide for older adults, looking at home-based activies and how people can maintain their strenth and balance. This can be found here.

You can find information about coronavirus in other languages here. There are maternity-specific leaflets in different languages on the NHS website

We will share further resources as soon as they are available, including material for people with autism. Please head to our COVID-19 resource folder for the full suite of documents available. Follow this link to access our YouTube video library for coronavirus advice, including British Sign Language.

Local response to COVID-19

Please follow our social media channels to keep up to date with the latest information, including Facebook and Twitter.

Contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you have any questions, or if you would like any further local materials.