Information about COVID-19
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Do you know someone in England who is 65 or over with symptoms of coronavirus? They can book a test now by clicking here.
If you're an essential worker who is self-isolating (not able to leave home), you can now apply for you and your household to get tested for coronavirus (COVID-19).
If you’re invited to book a coronavirus (COVID-19) test, this is because we believe you’re an essential worker who is self-isolating (not able to leave home). The test is only for people who have symptoms of coronavirus – whether that’s you, or someone you live with. It involves taking a swab sample from your nose and throat. The test will tell whether you currently have coronavirus. While you wait for your results, you (and anyone you live with) must continue to self-isolate.
If you want access to all Government advice on coronavirus you'll find it here.
What is coronavirus?
Coronaviruses are a ‘type’ of virus. The coronavirus we are all affected by is called COVID-19, but you may also hear it called - coronavirus.
How serious is COVID-19?
Most people who get the virus will make a full recovery, but the virus can cause more severe symptoms and death. This is particularly true for people with a weakened immune system, for older people and for those with long term conditions like diabetes, cancer and chronic lung disease.
The more people who become infected - the more our NHS will not cope - so stay at home and save lives.
A lot of false information about this virus is being shared - it’s very important that you make sure that the information you use comes from a trusted source - all of the information on this page has been sourced from the NHS.
What are the symptoms?
If you are infected you experience a range of symptoms but the two symptoms to look out for are:
- A new continuous cough
- A fever or high temperature
What should I do if I have either of the above symptoms?
- Protect others - don't call NHS 111 (unless your symptoms have severely worsened)
- Protect others - don't call or go to your GP
- Protect others - don't go to your local hospital
If you live alone - stay at home without any visitors (self-isolate) immediately and for 7 days
If you live with others - you should all isolate yourselves at home for 14 days - this 14-day period starts from the day the first person in the home noticed the symptoms.
You staying at home for 7 or 14 days will stop you causing other people to get sick and possibly die - don't risk it.
For anyone in your home who starts displaying symptoms, they need to stay at home for 7 days from when the symptoms appeared, regardless of what day they are on in the original 14-day isolation period.
If at-risk people share your home - such as those who are older and those with underlying health conditions - ideally they should move out, perhaps to stay with friends or family for the whole isolation period. If they can't move out, they must keep as much distance as possible from others in the home during this period. Use disinfectant to keep surfaces clean, wash hands and keep them away from your face.
For further information read this government advice on staying at home and isolating.
What should I do if self-isolation is difficult?
- You can't manage with your symptoms at home
- Your conditions get worse
- Your symptoms do not get better after 7 days
You should use the online 111 service or if you can't use the online service call 111.
How can you avoid getting and spreading the virus?
Scientists think the virus spreads via droplets from coughs and sneezes and we know it spreads easily and can stay on surfaces for a while. Follow the advice below to reduce your risk and the risk to others.
- Avoid non-essential contact with others - work from home if you can and don't socialising with others - if you do go out keep 6 feet (2metres) distance.
- Wash your hands - with soap and water often, for at least 20 seconds. Do this before leaving home and after returning home, before eating and drinking, and after coughing or sneezing.
- Cover your mouth and nose - with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze - tissue in the bin and wash, or disinfect, your hands immediately.
- Don't touch your face - especially your eyes, nose and mouth.
- Clean surfaces - disinfect surfaces around you - especially mobiles, computers, keyboards, worktops, desks, handles...
Keep up-to-date with government emails about coronavirus (COVID-19) here.