Local support hub FAQs

Why have you set up local support hubs?

They are just one way of protecting people most likely to get very poorly from coronavirus. Some people have a health condition that means they are most likely to get very ill and have to go to hospital if they get coronavirus.

People who are most likely to get very ill from coronavirus need to do more than others to try to stop getting coronavirus. They are at even more risk if they do not have access to the help the rest of us have or if the people supporting them get ill.

Who are the local support hubs for?

These support hubs are for people who are at greater risk because they have a severe medical condition, and who do not have access to family, friends or local support networks. If you are eligible, you may have received a letter from you GP or NHS inviting you to register on the website.

More information can be found the government page on shielding and protecting extremely vulnerable persons from Covid-19

How will I know if I have a severe medical condition?

You should have received a letter from your GP saying the NHS has identified you, or the named person you care for, as someone at risk of severe illness if you catch Coronavirus (COVID-19).

This is because you have an underlying disease or health condition that means if you catch the virus, you are more likely to be admitted to hospital than others.

What are the ‘underlying’ health conditions that put people at risk?

The health conditions that put people at risk of getting very ill and having to go to hospital if they get coronavirus are:

  • Solid organ transplant recipients
  • People with specific cancers
  • People with cancer who are undergoing active chemotherapy or radical radiotherapy for lung cancer
  • People with cancers of the blood or bone marrow such as leukaemia, lymphoma or myeloma who are at any stage of treatment
  • People having immunotherapy or other continuing antibody treatments for cancer
  • People having other targeted cancer treatments which can affect the immune system, such as protein kinase inhibitors or PARP inhibitors
  • People who have had bone marrow or stem cell transplants in the last 6 months, or who are still taking immunosuppression drugs
  • People with severe respiratory conditions including all cystic fibrosis, severe asthma and severe COPD
  • People with rare diseases and inborn errors of metabolism that significantly increase the risk of infections (such as SCID, homozygous sickle cell)
  • People on immunosuppression therapies sufficient to significantly increase risk of infection
  • People who are pregnant with significant heart disease, congenital or acquired

What do I need to do?

If you are in touch with friends, family or a network in your community who can support you to get food and medicine, follow the advice given to you in your letter.

If you do not have contacts who can help support you contact the Government’s dedicated support service or call 0800 0288327

What support will be available from the hubs?

The hub will coordinate local support and volunteering networks who are able to arrange for practical support such as:

  • Delivery of essential food.
  • Collection prescriptions or medication
  • Getting to planned GP or hospital appointments
  • Mental wellbeing
  • Help with daily living

Where are the local support hubs?

I’ve have not received a letter from my GP but I think I meet the criteria for severe medical conditions?

If you are in touch with friends, family or a support network in your community who can support you to get food and medicine then you do not need to take immediate action.

When you do let your GP know he/she will be able to tell you if you should register for additional support the government's dedicated support service or call 0800 0288327 the Government’s dedicated helpline.

Can local voluntary groups refer people for Council support?

If voluntary groups identify individuals that they are concerned about, they can refer them by completing the support for vulnerable people form or calling us on 01296 383 204

I am supporting a vulnerable relative and concerned what will happen to them if I become ill.

If you are unable to support your relative, and there are no other family or friends to stand in, please contact the council 01296 383 204. We will link you up with local support arrangements.

Social Services already support my relative. Do I need to register them or will they be automatically registered by the Council?

If your relative is already in receipt of social care, and has no local support, you will still need to register them with the government's dedicated support service or call 0800 0288327

How do I get involved or volunteer?

If you would like to help firstly ‘Thank you’ we all need to pull together to get through this. Now visit our 'helping others' page to see what you can do

What is a coronavirus Area Coordinator?

Coronavirus area coordinators are Council staff who are working to make sure local support reaches people who are in need. They will link up with coronavirus voluntary groups, and task groups who are working to support local vulnerable people.

How do I contact my coronavirus Area Coordinator?

View the coronavirus Area Coordinator page for the latest list and contact information.