COVID-19 (Coronavirus) advice

In this page we will be linking all of the current information about COVID-19. Please navigate using the links on the left to find the information you need.

What is coronavirus?

COVID-19 is a new illness that can affect your lungs and airways. It’s caused by a virus called coronavirus.

Visit the NHS website below to find out information on:

  • Staying at home to stop the spread of coronavirus
  • What to do if you have symptoms (and what those symptoms are
  • What to do if you need medical help for another reason
  • Advice for people at high risk

And other questions regarding the outbreak.

https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

I live in Calderdale and need help during the COVID-19 lockdown

If you need more information about any of these services, or if you want to log a request with the council’s volunteer team, then do not hesitate to call us on 01422 399433 and leave an answerphone message. We are picking up all answerphone messages and we’ll call you back as soon as possible

I am a vulnerable person, or I feel I need some support during the Covid-19 lockdown, who can help me?

• Community groups: People in each area of Calderdale have used social media to coordinate support locally. From telephone befriending services to home deliveries, much of this is done via social media. To find out what support is available in your local area click here

• Calderdale Council: the council has established a virtual volunteer hub. If you feel you would benefit from support contact the hub via: volunteeringcovid19@calderdale.gov.uk and provide details about the support you need and get more advice.

• Noah’s Ark is offering food packages. Click here for more: http://www.noahsarkcentre.org.uk/

How will Covid-19 affect my benefits?

For information as to the impact of Covd-19  on your benefits please see: https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/health/coronavirus-what-it-means-for-you/ 

I need help with my mental health needs during the Covid-19 lockdown, are local services still running?

• Open Minds Calderdale – emotional health and wellbeing support for children, young people, parents, carers or professionals: http://www.openmindscalderdale.org.uk/

• Healthy Minds – a Calderdale mental health charity: http://www.healthymindscalderdale.co.uk/

• Samaritans offers a free, confidential service, 24 hours a day on 116 123, https://www.samaritans.org/

• Shout: Text SHOUT to 85258 for 24/7 crisis support, https://www.giveusashout.org/get-help/

I want to help vulnerable people in Calderdale, how can I do this?

• Become an NHS volunteer responder: The NHS and Royal Voluntary Service are working together on this project. You can sign up and volunteer to collect shopping, medication and other essential supplies for someone who is self-isolating, and delivering these supplies to their home; volunteer in patient transport; transport equipment and supplied or call people who may be isolated.  Visit: https://www.goodsamapp.org/NHS for more details and to sign up

• Calderdale Council has set up a virtual volunteer hub. The virtual nature means people can still help others, but reduce social interaction between people. Click here to find out more: http://news.calderdale.gov.uk/council-sets-out-plan-to-co-ordinate-community-response-to-covid-19/

• Community Foundation for Calderdale: The organisation is mobilising resources and donors to support front line charities locally and help local vulnerable people. It has launched a Calderdale Community Resilience Fund where donations can be made here: https://localgiving.org/appeal/CalderdaleCommunityResilienceFund/

Public Health Information

Hand washing advice

Essential Advice

How to use the NHS

Spot the signs

A message from the Chief Medical Officer

COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions

We have been asked questions by the public about the type of NHS service they may expect during the Covid-19, also known as coronavirus, pandemic.

For the latest information from the government click here: https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus

The information below is correct as of March 2020. We will endeavour to update it where possible. Most GP surgeries, hospital trusts and so on may operate slightly differently. If you are in doubt, contact your provider by telephone for more information.

What are the symptoms of coronavirus?

The symptoms of coronavirus infection Covid-19 are:

  • A cough
  • A high temperature
  • A shortness of breath

These symptoms do not necessarily mean you have the illness. These can be similar to other illnesses such as the cold and flu.

What do I do if I think you might have coronavirus?

Stay at home.

If you have symptoms of Covid-19, however mild stay at home for 7 days if you have either:

  • a high temperature
  • a new continuous cough

This will help to protect others in your community while you are infectious.

Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital even if you suspect you have mild symptoms.

Do I need to tell my GP/call 111 if I have Covid-19 symptoms?

You do not need to contact NHS 111 to tell them you’re staying at home. The NHS will not be testing those self-isolating with mild symptoms.

Stay at home guidance has now been produced and is available by clicking here

How long should I stay at home for if I have symptoms?

If you have symptoms, stay at home for 7 days.

If you live with other people, they should stay at home for 14 days from the day the first person got symptoms.

What should I do if my symptoms worsen?

If your symptoms worsen during home isolation, or are no better after 7 days, contact NHS 111 online.  If you have no internet access, you should call NHS 111.

For a medical emergency dial 999.

Is there a specific treatment for coronavirus?

There is currently no specific treatment for coronavirus.

Current treatment options aim to relieve the symptoms while your body fights the illness. You are advised to stay in isolation and away from other people until you’ve recovered.

Do I need antibiotics?
Antibiotics do not help, they do not work against viruses.

Can I still visit my GP?

All General Practices are having to alter the way they operate during this unprecedented time.

Do not visit your GP if you have symptoms of coronavirus.

As of March 30, patients are being advised not attend their GP surgery without an appointment and should make contact by telephone – but only when necessary.

Those with a confirmed face-to-face appointment with a clinician may be asked to see them at a different GP practice to the one they would usually attend. This is because some practices will be closed or reorganising themselves to effectively cope with increased demand and suspected coronavirus (COVID-19) patients.

The location at which the patient will be seen will be communicated to by the clinical team at their registered GP practice, who are still available to contact via your usual GP practice number.

These changes will begin to take effect from Monday 30 March.

Many GP surgeries are currently running a triage service, which means staff may ask you for symptoms. You may be offered an appointment by telephone or online.

Some face-to-face appointments, for example cervical screening tests, may be delayed. Baby immunisations should continue and patients are asked to follow the guidance given by the GP surgery.

What do I do if I want to see my GP rather than having a telephone appointment?

The latest information for Calderdale is here: https://www.calderdaleccg.nhs.uk/gp-practices-in-calderdale-respond-to-coronavirus-covid-19/

All GP practices are begin urged to move to a triage-first model as soon as possible. This will help protect patients, staff and reduce risk of the virus spreading.

Currently, unless seeing a patient is clinically-required, patients may be offered an appointment by telephone, video or online to support triage and remote management of patients.

This will mean doctors limit the number of patients they come into contact with and reduce the risk of coming into contact with the virus.

Calderdale CCG says after the triage call, a clinician will decide:

  • If the patient needs a home visit
  • If the patient needs to come to the surgery,
  • Or they can attend an alternative nearby practice.

It is important that patients do not walk into their GP practice, whether that’s to make an appointment, hand in a prescription request or to ask about any other enquiries. All patients are asked to call their surgery first.

Practices are also being allowed to delay over-75 health checks, annual patient reviews and routine medication reviews, possibly until October.

How do I order my repeat prescription if I can’t visit the practice to ask?

GP surgeries are being urged to continue offering a repeat prescription service and they may use more online services. Call your GP surgery by telephone to ask what their policy is and what you can do if you do not have online access.

Can I visit a pharmacy to buy medicine if I suspect I have Covid-19 symptoms?

No, if you suspect you have Covid-19 symptoms you should not leave your house for 7 days, or 14 if you live in a household with someone with symptoms.

Medicines like paracetamol or liquid infant paracetamol may be useful if you/your child has symptoms, but you must ask a friend or relative to obtain it for you. You must not have contact with that person.

Is the walk-in centre open?

We have been informed that the NHS walk-in centre is temporarily closing during the outbreak. Find all the information in the link below:

Should I still attend the hospital if I have an appointment booked?

Yes, however Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Trust say they will be contacting patients where changes are necessary. More clinics and appointments may be offered via telephone and video.

Urgent and emergency cases and cancer treatments will be carrying on as normal.  Patients with cancer can get the latest update here: https://www.cht.nhs.uk/services/clinical-services/oncology/cancer-and-coronavirus-covid-19/

Routine NHS services will inevitably come under pressure as the coronavirus spreads and every hospital in England has been asked to suspend all non-urgent elective operations from 15 April for at least three months, with some other procedures likely to be rescheduled before then so we can train our staff and adapt certain areas. 

Can I still go to the hospital for a blood test?

Currently (23 March) CHFT are operating phlebotomy services as usual.

Do not attend if you have Covid-19 symptoms, or anyone in your household has symptoms.

Can I visit a local hospital if a family member is there?

Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust has revised its visiting times. Click here for the latest guidance: https://www.cht.nhs.uk/patients-visitors/visiting-times-from-march-2020/

Click here for the visiting time guidance at Mid Yorkshire Hospital Trusts (Dewsbury): https://www.midyorks.nhs.uk/visiting-restrictions-

Can I still see my dentist?

Do not visit your dentist if you have symptoms of Covid-19.

Dental practices are being urged to reduce the number of routine check-ups by cancelling appointment for patients from vulnerable groups. Others who do not wish to attend can cancel their appointments to reduce the need to travel and have close contact with other people. You should contact your dental surgery to discuss this with them.

Updated guidance given to dental surgeries is that they should not deliver any service to people with potential Covid-19 symptoms or anyone in their household, during the self-isolating period of up to 14 days. This means you may be asked questions when you call to make an appointment.

Patients with urgent dental treatment needs that cannot be delayed, who have Covid-19 symptoms, should be referred to local services which are appropriate. Call your dental surgery or 111 if you think you require this.

Can my dentist strike me off their list if I don’t go for a routine appointment at this time?

Some dental practices require patients to have at least one appointment every 12 months. There is currently no guidance, but due to the unprecedented situation Healthwatch Calderdale has been told (23 March) it is unlikely anyone will be struck off a dental surgery list if they cannot attend. Patients are advised to call their dental surgery to discuss and book a future appointment. 

Sexual Health

Mental health:

Calderdale Children’s Mental Health Services (CAMHS): The Open Minds Partnership has updated its website with useful links, tools, for children, young people & their parents/carers where Covid-19 is concerned. If they’re worried, have questions and so on then take a look & help them understand: http://www.openmindscalderdale.org.uk/category/help-and-support-coronavirus/

The Calderdale CAMHS First Point of Contact telephone service is still running, with referrals via the CAMHS website. Open Minds are offering online support via SilverCloud, a new online platform for young people. That can be accessed via the First Point of Contact.

Healthy Minds: Calderdale’s Healthy Minds is altered its programme, but still has plenty available to support people self-isolating. See their Facebook page here for more details: https://www.facebook.com/healthymindscalderdale/

Calderdale and Kirklees Single Point of Access (adults):

Click here for the latest from the service provider: https://www.southwestyorkshire.nhs.uk/services/single-point-of-access-2/

Terms being used:

What is self-isolation, and how do I do it?

Self-isolation

Self-isolation is about protecting others and slowing down the spread of COVID-19. It is very important that anyone who has the virus, or might have been exposed to it, limits the number of people they come into contact with. This is the most effective way of preventing the coronavirus from spreading.

Social distancing

Social distancing can include things like temporarily reducing socialising in public places such as entertainment or sports events, reducing use of non-essential public transport or recommending more home working.

What is social distancing? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Hi9-5F2zW4