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Coronavirus (COVID-19) information and advice

For the latest advice on COVID-19, please visit the GOV.UK Coronavirus guidance pages and How to stay safe and help prevent the spread of Coronavirus.

Select a topic below to find advice and guidance on specific topics such as testing, vaccination and help for vulnerable people.

Latest figures and cases in B&NES

To find out the latest case numbers, case rates, vaccination uptake rates, hospital admissions data, and number of deaths, visit GOV.UK

What to do if you have COVID-19 symptoms or are a close contact

If you have symptoms of a respiratory infection, including COVID-19, and a high temperature or feel unwell, you are advised to stay at home and avoid contact with other people until you feel well enough to resume normal activities and no longer have a high temperature.

If you test positive for COVID-19

If you have a positive COVID-19 test result, you are advised to stay at home and avoid contact with other people for five days, which is when you are most infectious.

National guidance is provided for individuals who need to leave their home when they have symptoms or have tested positive, including avoiding close contact with people with a weakened immune system, wearing a face-covering and avoiding crowded places.

Guidance for close contacts

People who live in the same household as someone with COVID-19 are at the highest risk of becoming infected because they are most likely to have prolonged close contact. People who stayed overnight in the household of someone with COVID-19 while they were infectious are also at high risk.

If you live with, or have stayed overnight in the household of, someone who has COVID-19, you are advised to follow the national guidance for close contacts.

Vaccination

Vaccine eligibility and booking

To find out who is eligible for COVID-19 vaccinations and information on how to book an appointment, please visit the NHS website

You need to be registered with a GP surgery in England to book an appointment online. You can register with a GP if you do not have one.

If you cannot book appointments online, you can call 119 free of charge (lines are open from 7am to 11pm). If you need a translator, have difficulties communicating or hearing, or are a British Sign Language (BSL) user, you can use textphone 18001 119 or the NHS 119 BSL interpreter service

To find your nearest walk-in clinic (no appointment or GP registration required), please visit the NHS walk-in vaccination centre service finder

If you want to find further information on vaccines, or have any questions, please visit the BSW Clinical Commissioning Group website

Grab a Cab

If you are a resident in Bath and North East Somerset and having difficulties getting to a COVID-19 vaccination site, our ‘Grab a Cab’ initiative means you can now hire a free taxi to get your vaccination appointment.

To use the service, your COVID-19 vaccination must be pre-booked and you must show evidence of the appointment to the taxi driver. Evidence can include a screenshot on a mobile phone or tablet, or a printout.

To book your taxi, call V-Cars on 01225 46 46 46 and say you would like to book a taxi to a vaccination site on account quoting:

  • Account number: BA-TTV 01
  • Account name: Grab a Cab
  • Password: Vaccination site

Once you have booked your taxi, the taxi driver will pick you up and take you to your appointment. Please be aware that your return journey must be within an hour of the appointment time.

'Grab a Cab' is a 3-month trial, that will run until Thursday 30 June 2022.

Vaccination guidance in different formats and languages

Easy read vaccination guidance
Audio vaccination guidance
British Sign Language (BSL) vaccination guidance
Vaccination guidance in different languages

The following information is translated into: Albanian, Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, Farsi, Gujarati, Hindi, Kurdish, Nepali, Punjabi, Polish, Romanian, Somali, Spanish, Tagalog, Turkish and Urdu. Open the relevant link to see the translation options.

COVID-19 vaccination guide for older adults

COVID-19 vaccination guide for eligible children and young people aged 12 to 17

Guide to COVID-19 booster vaccinations

Booking a COVID-19 vaccine appointment

What to expect after vaccination 

Women of childbearing age, currently pregnant or breastfeeding 

COVID-19 vaccination and blood clotting

COVID-19 vaccine information for people without an NHS number

What your NHS COVID pass letter tells you

If you cannot get an NHS COVID Pass letter about your COVID-19 status

COVID-19 vaccine information videos from the NHS explain how the vaccine is given and give clear evidence that the vaccines work and are safe. Available in Arabic, Bengali, Gujarati, Igbo, Nepali, Polish, Punjabi, Romanian, Somali, Spanish, Swahili, Turkish, Urdu and Yoruba.

Doctors of the World have resources on their translated information hub, including:

Testing

Due to changes in national policy, the community testing programme in Bath and North East Somerset has now ended:

  • The local community test site at 19 New Bond Street, Bath has now closed.
  • The COVID-19 mobile rapid testing van has now closed.

On 29 March, the government announced new guidance effective from 1 April 2022. Specific groups of people will still be able to access free COVID-19 tests once free testing for the public ends on 1 April.

To find out who is eligible to access free Coronavirus tests and how to access them, please visit the government website

Infection prevention and control measures

You can find guidance on infection prevention and control measures such as hand hygiene, respiratory hygiene, risk assessments for ventilation and face coverings on the government website

There are also other poster resources produced by the NHS, such as the Catch it, Bin it, Kill it poster

New guidance on the management of infection, prevention and control measures for childcare settings has been released and published on the government website

If you have any further enquiries relating to infection prevention, please contact the infection prevention and control team by email at: ipc@bathnes.gov.uk

NHS COVID Pass

From 1 April, the UK government is no longer recommending that certain venues use the NHS COVID Pass. However, it may still be required when visiting other countries.

To find out more information and how you can get the NHS COVID Pass, please visit GOV.UK

Help for residents and vulnerable people

When to send your child to school or childcare

If a household member has COVID-19

Children and young people who usually attend an education or childcare setting and who live with someone who has COVID-19 should continue to attend the setting as normal.

If your child is unwell

Children who are unwell should not attend the education setting and should remain at home until they feel better and have no acute symptoms. This includes children with a high temperature.

They can go back to school, college or childcare when they no longer have a high temperature, and they are well enough to attend.

Help for vulnerable people

Community Wellbeing Hub

The Community Wellbeing Hub has a professional triage team that can identify and link you to a range of local health and wellbeing services, including:

  • accessing food, transport, or medication
  • mental health
  • returning home from hospital
  • money advice and benefits support
  • housing
  • employment issues and advice
  • lifestyle services for help with stopping smoking, getting active, or losing weight

To contact the Hub, you can:

Help with everyday tasks from an NHS volunteer

NHS Volunteer Responders can help with things like:

  • collecting shopping
  • collecting medicines and prescriptions
  • phone calls if you need to chat to someone

Find out more on their website, or call 0808 196 36 46 between 8am and 8pm everyday to arrange help from a volunteer.

Help for businesses

Latest guidance

The government has published its plan for living with COVID-19

The government has also published guidance on reducing the spread of respiratory infections, including COVID-19, in the workplace, including how to effectively maintain COVID-secure measures in these settings. It is important that businesses follow this guidance to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 and keep people safe.

COVID-19 vaccinations - national resources

To find out more about how you can support vaccination of your workforce, please see COVID-19 vaccination: guide for employers and view Public Health England's Vaccination Employer's Toolkit

Let's look after each other - local resources

We have produced some council-branded posters for businesses, designed to encourage people to look after each other and to remind them of some basic principles for keeping each other safe.

You can download posters for the following disease prevention measures:

Living safely with COVID-19 in the workplace - local resources

We have developed a tool that employers or managers can use to assess whether a member of staff (or a volunteer) is at greater risk of developing serious illness when infected with COVID-19. The tool offers practical actions that employers,managers, staff and volunteers can take to reduce this risk.

Download the Living safely with COVID-19 in the workplace tool

Help for care providers

Whilst the Living with COVID-19 guidance removes restrictions for the general population, adult social care guidance remains in operation. Due to the higher risk nature of health and social care settings, the advice for staff members working in these settings has not changed.

You can find the guidance for COVID-19 testing in adult social care from 1 April on the government website

COVID-19 vaccination

Regulations revoking vaccination as a condition of deployment came into force on 15 March 2022. This means that it will not become a requirement for people to have received a COVID-19 vaccine to deliver face to face CQC-regulated activities in wider social care settings.

We still encourage staff and support providers to encourage staff to receive their vaccinations. Vaccines save lives and everyone working in health and social care has a professional duty to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

If you would like support with finding vaccination appointments for staff, receiving information about vaccinations or would like someone to come and speak to staff members, please contact the Infection, Prevention and Control Team by email at ipc@bathnes.gov.uk

Local support from our Infection, Prevention and Control team

In response to the national plan for living with COVID-19, we have a local Infection, Prevention and Control response plan to help continue to support care providers, which will include proactive and reactive approaches, including support with other health protection priorities.

Please contact the Infection Prevention and Control Team if you would like to:

  • Report an outbreak
  • Receive support during an outbreak
  • Receive general Infection, Prevention and Control advice including interpretation of guidance
  • Need help with a risk assessment for COVID-19 or other infectious disease
  • Find out about Infection, Prevention and Control training

Local Outbreak Management Plan

Our Local Outbreak Management Plan sets out how we will do this, by taking the following steps:

  • Reducing the risk of outbreaks occurring in the first place
  • Identifying and suppressing possible outbreaks before they gain momentum
  • Working with local communities

Please be aware that this Plan will be replaced with the B&NES Living Safely with COVID plan. Once this is available, we will update this information.

Guidance in different languages and alternative formats

Different languages

People with symptoms of a respiratory infection including COVID-19 (Translated into Arabic, Bengali, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, Farsi, French, Gujarati, Hindi, Pashto, Polish, Portugese, Punjabi, Slovak, Somali, Tamil and Urdu)

COVID-19: ventilation of indoor spaces to stop the spread of coronavirus (translated into Arabic, Bengali, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese, French, Gujarati, Polish, Portuguese, Punjabi and Urdu)

Personal protection equipment (PPE) recommendation for unpaid carers (translated into Albanian, Arabic, Bengali, Brazilian Portuguese, Bulgarian, Chinese, Estonian, Farsi, Greek, Gujarati, Hindi, Latvian, Lithuanian, Panjabi, Pashto, Polish, Romanian, Romany, Russian, Somali, Spanish, Tagalog, Turkish, Twi, Ukrainian, Urdu and Yiddish))

Guidance for people who are at an increased risk from COVID-19

Letter to patients about the end of the shielding programme (translated into Arabic, Bengali, Bulgarian, Chinese, French, Gujarati, Hindi, Nepali, Polish, Portuguese, Punjabi and Urdu)

Letter regarding clinically extremely vulnerable children and young people (translated into Arabic, Bengali, Bulgarian, Chinese Simplified, Chinese Traditional, French, Gujarati, Hindi, Nepali, Polish, Portuguese, Punjabi and Urdu)

Long COVID

Information about Long COVID (translated into Arabic, Bengali, Chinese (Traditional and Simplified), Dari, Farsi, Hindi, Pashto, Polish, Punjabi, Romanian, Slovak, Spanish and Urdu)

Coping strategies

Coping strategies for anxious times from Avon & Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership Trust (in Albanian, Arabic, Bengali, Farsi, French, Mandarin, Pashto, Polish, Romanian, Somali, Sorani, Tigrinya, Turkish and Urdu)

NHS COVID-19 app

How the NHS COVID-19 app works (translated into Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, Gujarati, Polish, Punjabi, Romanian, Somali, Turkish, Urdu and Welsh. Video explainers can be found in Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, Gujarati, Polish, Punjabi, Romanian, Turkish, Urdu and Welsh)

Testing, treatment and keeping safe

How to do a rapid Covid-19 test (translated into Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, Dari, Hindi, Gujarati, Pashto, Persian, Polish, Punjabi, Romanian, Shahmukhi, Slovak, Somali, Turkish, Urdu and Welsh)

How to do a PCR test (translated into Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, Hindi, Gujarati, Pashto, Polish, Punjabi, Slovak, Somali, Urdu and Welsh)

Testing for COVID-19 before hospital (translated into Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, Hindi, Gujarati, Pashto, Polish, Punjabi, Slovak, Somali, Urdu and Welsh)

Information in other formats

British Sign Language (BSL)

Protecting people who are clinically extremely vulnerable from COVID-19

Guidance for people previously considered as clinically extremely vulnerable from COVID-19

Information about Long COVID

Audio guides

Audio instructions on how to take a PCR test

Keep informed about B&NES

You can always find the latest information on what is happening locally by doing the following: