Guidance and potential contacts for further information relating to 'Vulnerable Groups' can be found below.
NB. New guidelines to be added post Government briefing due 25.6.20. We shall add them below.
This is Public Health England's definition of Vulnerable groups during the Covid 19 crisis.
We are advising those who are at increased risk of severe illness from coronavirus (COVID-19) to be particularly stringent in following social distancing measures.
This group includes those who are:
- aged 70 or older (regardless of medical conditions)
- under 70 with an underlying health condition listed below (ie anyone instructed to get a flu jab as an adult each year on medical grounds):
- chronic (long-term) respiratory diseases, such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), emphysema or bronchitis
- chronic heart disease, such as heart failure
- chronic kidney disease
- chronic liver disease, such as hepatitis
- chronic neurological conditions, such as Parkinson’s disease, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), a learning disability or cerebral palsy
- problems with your spleen – for example, sickle cell disease or if you have had your spleen removed
- a weakened immune system as the result of conditions such as HIV and AIDS, or medicines such as steroid tablets or chemotherapy
- being seriously overweight (a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or above)
- those who are pregnant
Note: there are some clinical conditions which put people at even higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19. If you are in this category, next week the NHS in England will directly contact you with advice about the more stringent measures you should take in order to keep yourself and others safe. For now, you should rigorously follow the social distancing advice in full, outlined below.
People falling into this group are those who may be at particular risk due to complex health problems such as:
- people who have received an organ transplant and remain on ongoing immunosuppression medication
- people with cancer who are undergoing active chemotherapy or radiotherapy
- people with cancers of the blood or bone marrow such as leukaemia who are at any stage of treatment
- people with severe chest conditions such as cystic fibrosis or severe asthma (requiring hospital admissions or courses of steroid tablets)
- people with severe diseases of body systems, such as severe kidney disease (dialysis)
Here are some useful local posts ( including for other towns in Thanet) & contacts for further advice relating to helping and supporting people from the above groups :
Please click on the images below to enlarge - list of current services open to all
If, for whatever reason you are in isolation and your utility supplier says they need to access your property for a meter reading, here are the Ofgem guidelines and solutions :
What should I do if a supplier needs to access my property and I am self-isolating?
If your supplier contacts you to visit your property, tell them if you are unwell or are self-isolating. If you are concerned or worried about the actions of your supplier or network company, contact them to explain the issue straightaway. Many have set up special consumer response teams to support customers during this period of uncertainty.
Suppliers and network companies are putting in place plans and alternative arrangements to deal with routine activities, such as meter readings at homes where occupants are self-isolating.
If your meter is outside, it may be helpful for you to leave your meter box unlocked if it's safe to do so.
Suppliers must monitor and respond to government guidance on self-isolation and health and safety, and take timely decisions on how best to protect customers and staff while delivering their services. We expect them to have the safety, health and wellbeing of their customers as their central priority with a particular focus on risks to vulnerable customers or where customers are at risk of going off supply or have gone off supply.
If you or someone you know is vulnerable, of pensionable age, has children under 5, a disability or long-term medical condition it’s important to let your energy supplier know. Each energy supplier keeps a Priority Services Register of people who may need additional assistance such as password security to help you identify supplier representatives. It’s free to be added to the list.
Contact the Citizens Advice Helpline if you need additional help with an energy problem. They’re the official source of free and independent energy advice and support. Go to Citizensadvice.org.uk/energy or call them on 0808 223 1133. Calls are free.
If you need more support if you feel overwhelmed, or are unable to deal with your supplier on your own because of personal circumstances, the Citizens Advice Helpline may also be able to refer you to their Extra Help Unit. Learn more at: https://ehu.org.uk.