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What does the pausing of the shielding programme mean for vulnerable residents?

Peterborough City Council's Director of Public Health has issued guidance to residents listed as "clinically extremely vulnerable" as the government's shielding programme pauses nationally from August 1.
shielding
Thousands of people have been supported during the lockdown by the county hub set up by Cambridgeshire County and Peterborough City councils (Picture: Shariqua Ahmed)

Peterborough residents receiving free government food and medicine deliveries or care will continue to receive this support until the end of July, when shielding is paused.

The priority supermarket delivery slots offered by seven supermarkets will continue beyond the cut-off date for people already signed up for support. Medicine deliveries should, where possible, be collected from the pharmacy and delivered by family, friends, a carer or a volunteer.

Those who cannot access this support can contact the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Coordination Hub for advice and guidance by completing an "I need help" form or ringing 0345 045 5219. The phone line is open from Monday to Friday, 8am to 6pm.

As changes to the national advice and support for "shielded" people come into effect, the levels of Covid-19 in Peterborough are higher than the national average. The Director of Public Health for Peterborough City Council, Dr Liz Robin, has issued advice to residents who fall into this category.

If you live in Peterborough and are clinically extremely vulnerable, you may still be at risk of severe illness if you catch coronavirus. As a result, you should still take the following precautions after August 1:

  • Stay at home as much as possible and continue to take precautions when you do go out. This includes regular hand washing, avoiding touching your face and keeping a social distance of two metres away from people outside of your household or bubble whenever possible.
  • Avoid gatherings of any size.
  • Avoid going in person to shops if you can make other arrangements.
  • Avoid going to services in places of worship where there are several other people.
  • Talk to your employer to see whether you are able to work from home.

Peterborough City Council will continue to review the guidance on a weekly basis, meaning the next review will be August 8. Updates will be issued when appropriate and will be shared with local employers where possible. All shielding guidance remains advisory.

Cllr Wayne Fitzergerald, Peterborough City Council’s Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Health and Public Health, said: "Ensuring that all our residents remain safe and well throughout the pandemic is our priority and we are taking all necessary steps to achieve this. While we understand the last four months have been difficult for many, particularly those who have been shielding, it is vital we continue to encourage vulnerable people to make the right decisions to stay safe. We will do all we can to provide support to make this possible."

Peterborough Information Network provides a directory of information and services on the Peterborough City Council website.

The NHS Volunteer Responder scheme is also available for help collecting shopping, medicine or other essential supplies, or just for someone to talk to. Call them free on 0808 1963646.





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