Key National Information Sources
Everyone in Wales must follow the new national lockdown guidance:
- You must stay at home except when necessary. Do not travel without reasonable excuse.
- You must not meet socially with anyone that is not part of your household or support bubble.
- Certain businesses and venues have closed.
- Schools and colleges should move to online learning until 18 January 2021. They will still be open for children of critical workers, vulnerable children and learners who need to complete essential exams or assessments.
If you are clinically vulnerable, there are new shielding measures you should take. See the ‘Shielding and Vulnerable People’ section below for more information.
- The Nest scheme offers free impartial advice to people struggling to cope with their energy bills, and can provide a package of home energy efficiency improvements to those who are eligible.
- You can also apply for Universal Credit or the Welsh Government’s Discretionary Assistance Fund payment.
Physical and mental wellbeing:
- Information about looking after your wellbeing can be found at the Public Health Wales website.
- The Welsh Parliament has pulled together information, links to support and resources about coronavirus and mental health.
- Looking Out for Each Other scheme provides practical guidance about how everyday tasks can be done safely, without physical contact to minimise the risk of contracting Covid-19. It also shares information about how to stay mentally and physically active.
- If you are looking for support from the charity sector in Wales, there is further information about each of the local authorities and where to seek advice here.
- An online hub includes a ‘helping hand’ card, which can be downloaded and put through the letterboxes of neighbours to offer help to those who are isolating.
- This guidance provides advice on issues relating to moral, ethical, cultural and faith considerations and provide a source of advice to health services to inform equitable and just management of issues arising from the health care emergency response to Covid-19.
Shielding and Vulnerable People
Updated guidance for those who are extremely clinically vulnerable can be found here. Doctors have been reviewing all children and young people to identify who is still thought to be at highest risk. If you have not yet heard from your child’s hospital doctor or GP, contact your care provider to check whether your child is still considered clinically extremely vulnerable.
Shielding measures you should follow:
- You should not attend work or school outside the home.
- You should stay at home as much as possible. You can still go out for exercise or other essential reasons.
Besides shielding measures, you should stick to basic actions that help reduce your risk, such as keeping contacts to a minimum, regularly washing your hands, and wearing face coverings.
If you are on the Shielding Patients List, you have access to priority slots for supermarket deliveries. Find more information about getting food support here.
The clinically extremely vulnerable will get priority access to vaccination against Covid-19 before the general population and in line with the priority order. You will be contacted again by the NHS with more information on when and how you will be invited to get the vaccine.
Even if you have had both doses of the vaccine, you should continue to follow shielding advice. The people you live with should also continue to follow the public health rules even if they have received the vaccine.
Working Safely During Coronavirus
You must work from home if you can. People who are not able to work from home, but are able to work safely in their workplaces, can do so, provided their workplace remains open.
If you cannot make alternative arrangements, your employer may be able to furlough you under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. Clinically vulnerable people that are advised not to work may be eligible for Statutory Sick Pay (SSP). Members of your household who are not clinically extremely vulnerable should continue to attend work if they are unable to work from home.
For specific advice on any issues and also on your employment rights by visiting the Acas website or calling the Acas helpline, 0300 123 1100.
If you feel that you have been treated unfairly by your employer, or somebody who gives you a service, then the Equality Advisory and Support Service (EASS) offers a free advice service which you can access by calling 0808 800 0082, by text phone on 0808 800 0084 or by visiting their website here.
Welsh Government has produced guidance for employers and employees about how to remain safe in the workplace. Detailed guidance is available here.
A Covid-19 workforce risk assessment tool is available to check if you are at higher risk of more serious symptoms if you come into contact with Covid-19. The tool helps you to consider your personal risk factors for COVID-19 and suggests how to stay safe.
Carers and Parents
The Welsh Government launched the £500 payment scheme last month to support people who have been asked to self-isolate by the Test, Trace Protect service. They have now expanded the Self-Isolation Support Scheme to include parents and carers of children who have been asked to self-isolate.
Mencap have pulled together resources and advice for carers who may be affected by Covid-19. Find questions and answers here about how Covid-19 might affect direct payments in Wales, including employees and workers self-isolating, and furloughing staff here.
The Welsh government has released guidance for those who provide unpaid care for family and friends and it can be found here. The Welsh Government has also produced guidance for unpaid carers on access and use of PPE.
A parenting and family advice charity has been awarded funding to extend its helpline service to Welsh speakers. The charity Family Lives currently provides emotional support, information, advice and guidance on any aspect of parenting and family life across England and Wales.
Information for Charities
WCVA has collated a range of COVID 19 specific resources and information for voluntary organisations in Wales here.
Find out about other countries information
General News and updates for Wales
Updated Covid-19 vaccination priority order
New guidance priorities clinically extremely vulnerable individuals for Covid-19 vaccine.
Who should be prioritised for Covid-19 Vaccine?
Genetic Alliance UK recommends that people with genetic, rare and undiagnosed conditions be prioritised for Covid-19...