Dudley Council
Dudley Skyline

Guidance on shielding and protecting people who are clinically extremely vulnerable (cev)

People who are clinically extremely vulnerable are at high risk of getting seriously ill from coronavirus (COVID-19).

Current guidance

From 1 April 2021 you are advised to:

  • Continue to keep the number of social interactions that you have low and try to reduce the amount of time you spend in settings where you are unable to maintain social distancing.
  • You should still work from home if you can, but if that is not possible, you can return to the workplace. Your employer is required to take steps to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace and should
    be able to explain to you the measures they have put in place to keep you safe.
  • You will no longer be advised to avoid shops or pharmacies; you should minimise rink by shopping and travelling at quieter times of the day
  • Clinically extremely vulnerable children and young people should return to school, college or other educational settings.

We know for some people it will be difficult to adjust to the new advice, and some people will continue to need support. Further advice and guidance on local support is available in the below sections.

Things you can do

Stay informed and in touch

  • Get up-to-date information about local COVID-19 activity from Dudley Council.
  • Sign up to Dudley newsletters.
  • Create a list of local organisations you and your household can contact in case you need access to information, healthcare services, support, and resources.
  • Create an emergency contact list including family, friends, neighbours, carpool drivers, healthcare providers, teachers, employers and other community resources.

Access to essentials

If you are clinically extremely vulnerable and staying at home there are different ways you can get the essentials you need such as food and medication.

Online shopping

If you have previously registered for priority online shopping on the National Shielding Support Service (NSSS) you will continue to receive priority access to supermarket delivery slots until the 21 June 2021. 

Other help to access essentials

  • You may be able to enlist family, friends or neighbours to do a shop or pick up prescriptions for you
  • Many supermarkets have set up telephone food shopping for vulnerable customers
    • Morrisons 0345 611 6111
    • Co-op 0800 435 902
    • Sainsbury’s Shielding Service call service - 0800 917 8557
    • Waitrose - 0800 022 4055
    • Local independent retailers may also have put telephone services in place
  • NHS Volunteer Responders can pick up your shopping and/or medication and deliver it to you call 0808 196 3646 (7 days a week 8am-8pm). They also provide a check in and chat service
  • Pleased to Meet You- If you are age 60+ or younger with a specific need i.e. physical and/or sensory disability, dementia or learning disability, you can contact Dudley Council’s Pleased to Meet You support service on 01384 812761 Mon to Fri, 9am to 4pm, they can provide help with arranging grocery shopping or medicine supplies and regular telephone chat if you’re feeling lonely or isolated

Medication

If you have to collect medicines yourself, you should visit pharmacies at quieter times.

Ask friends or family if they can collect medicines for you. If not call NHS responders and ask if they are able to assign a volunteer on 0808 195 3646 8am - 8pm. This service also provides help with shopping, or other essential supplies.

Support Available

Dudley Council Plus

To pay for and find information on any council service.

Please call 0300 555 2345, Mon - Fri, 8.30am - 5pm and Sat, 9am - 12 noon or visit the services web page

NHS Responders

0808 195 3646 8am - 8pm. This service also provides help with shopping, medication or other essential supplies for those who are vulnerable at risk.

NHS Health at Home

www.nhs.uk/health-at-home This service signposts the public to the information they need to contact their GP, order repeat prescriptions, and manage their wellbeing and existing conditions - without having to leave home.

Welfare benefits support during coronavirus

Welfare Benefits Coronavirus helpline

The council has set up a Welfare Benefits advice line for those affected by the Coronavirus pandemic.

Please call 01384 815002

Tue and Thu, 9.30am - 1pm and 2pm - 4.30pm

Dudley Council Housing Support Team

This team provides support on welfare benefits matters such as Universal Credit, rent arrears, debt advice, furniture needs and utilities etc.

Please call 01384 812504 between 10am and 4pm, Monday to Friday.

Financial support

You may be worried about Coronavirus (COVID-19) and how it has had an impact on you or your family. If you are worried about debt or your financial situation at this time, there are services in Dudley that will offer their support. More information on the financial support available.

Mental health support

Dudley MIND

For people who are feeling anxious and would like emotional support.

Please call 01384 442938, Mon - Fri, 8am - 12 midnight and Sat and Sun, 10am - 12 midnight.

Black Country Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust 24 hour helpline

A new, 24/7 helpline which is open to residents of all ages across the Black Country and will give access to urgent mental health, learning disability and/or autism support.

Monday – Sunday, 24 hours a day – call 0345 6460827 – press 1 in you live in Sandwell or Wolverhampton and press 2 if you live in Dudley or Walsall

Dudley Talking Therapy Service

This service is for those that are registered with a Dudley GP, who need support for problems such as; sleep issues, generalised anxiety, low mood, worry, stress, low resilience etc.

They offer a range of therapeutic support options, including group therapy, 1-1 support, guided self-help in the form of Silvercloud, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Interpersonal and Dynamic interpersonal Therapy and Counselling.

There is a dedicated Perinatal priority pathway, supporting pregnant women and new moms with babies up to the age of 12 months.  They also support people who have a long-term health condition which contributes to their mental health concern.

Complete the online self-referral form at -  https://www.dihc.nhs.uk/find-a-service/dudley-talking-therapy-service  

Or Call on 0800 953 0404 - 9 to 5 Monday to Friday

To watch a video about the service visit https://www.ease-the-load.org/  

Clients are usually contacted within 3 working days to arrange an initial assessment.

This is a primary care service, those identified as not being suitable for the service, will be signposted or referred on as appropriate.

If you are registered with a GP outside of Dudley, talk to your GP to find out what services they have on offer.

National helplines

Age UK

For practical information and advice. Call free on 0800 169 65 65

The Silver Line

For a cheerful chat, day or night. Call free on 0800 470 80 90

Samaritans

If you’re feeling really alone and very stressed, the Samaritans provide a 24-hour listening service. Call free on 116 123

If you are feeling anxious or worried about coronavirus, these websites provide helpful and supportive information:

www.mind.org.uk www.mentalhealth.org.uk

Spotting covid related scams / calls

How to protect yourself

Protect yourself by making sure you:

  • Never give money or your payment details to anyone who volunteers to help you who you don’t know. There are many local groups set up to help people but they should never ask for personal bank details
  • Don’t click on links or attachments in suspicious emails
  • Don’t respond to unsolicited messages asking for personal or financial information
  • Install the latest software and updates on your devices
  • Research a company before making payments online and always use a credit card if you have one not a debit card

If you suspect a bogus caller operating in your area contact the dedicated out of hours Bogus Caller Hotline on 01384 812045 or the Dudley Scams Unit on 01384 818871.

Basic care needs

Dudley Carers Hub

If you care for a family member or friend and are concerned, call Dudley Carer’s Hub Advice Line on 01384 818723 Monday – Friday 9am – 5pm.

Access to Adult Social Care helpline

For people who use adult social care services and are worried about service closures or need adult social care support or advice.

Please call 0300 555 0055, Mon - Fri, 9am - 5pm and 0300 555 8574 for emergency contact at all other times.

Further Information

We have a dedicated mailbox for queries about how Dudley Council can support you mail DudleyCouncilPlus@dudley.gov.uk or call on 0300 555 2345. This service is open 9 - 5:30pm weekdays.