With Coronavirus still circulating in our communities, and the nation in lockdown until 2nd December, it remains essential that people follow the government rules to limit its spread. Just doing simple things like washing your hands regularly, wearing face masks and keeping a safe 2m distance, will reduce rates of infection in Peterborough.
Here’s what you must do to keep yourself and your loved ones safe:
- Reduce all non-essential contact with other households
The more contact you have with people outside of your household, the greater the chance of spreading the virus.
- Keep a safe 2m distance
Coronavirus spreads when an infected person coughs, sneezes or speaks and transmits the virus into the air. To be effective, you must stay 2m away from anyone not in your household or support bubble, or at least 1m, with additional precautions such as a face covering, if this is not possible.
- Carry a face covering
And wear it inside when mixing with people you don’t live with. Keep a spare face covering in your coat pocket, in your bag or in your car so you never have to worry about forgetting it.
- Keep hands clean. Always make sure your hands are clean and wash them regularly for at least 20 seconds and carry hand sanitiser gel for when there are no hand washing facilities close by.
Watch out for the most common symptoms of Coronavirus which include a high temperature, continuous cough and a loss or change in your sense of taste or smell. If you experience one or more of these symptoms, you must book a test straight away and self-isolate, along with others in your household, until you receive a result. Don’t wait and see if the symptoms get better without booking a test.
You can book a free NHS test if you have symptoms, or if you have been asked to by a health professional or your local council. To see the list of eligibility and book a test online visit https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test or call 119.
Are you clear on when you need to isolate?
Self-isolating when you need to is one of the most effective ways we can manage and beat the virus together.
Avoiding contact with others when you have symptoms, or when you’ve had close contact with someone who has tested positive, will limit the spread of the virus and keep the people you care about safe.
You must self-isolate:
- If you or someone you live with has symptoms of coronavirus.
- If you have been asked to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace.
- If you have returned from a country which is on the quarantine list.
- If you test positive for Covid-19, or have been in contact with someone who has, by law you must self-isolate.
If you are self-isolating, you must not go to work, school or public places. Don’t go out to exercise, to get food, or to collect medicine. You must not use public transport or have visitors in your home. You will be protecting others by working from home, shopping online and exercising at home.
If you don’t have anyone who can support you, don’t struggle at home alone. The Peterborough Hub can help – please call 01733 747474 or visit https://www.peterborough.gov.uk/
NHS volunteers can also help with everyday tasks such as collecting shopping or medicines. You can register for support at https://nhsvolunteerresponders.org.uk/.
£500 self-isolation payment: are you eligible?
Low-wage workers who are told to self-isolate are able to claim £500 as part of a new government scheme to make it easier for people who can’t afford to self-isolate for up to two weeks.
In order to be eligible for the Test and Trace Support payment you will need to meet all of the four criteria:
- you have been asked to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace because you have tested positive for coronavirus or have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive
- you are employed or self-employed
- you cannot work from home and will lose income as a result
- you are claiming at least one of the following benefits: Universal Credit, Working Tax Credits, income-related Employment and Support Allowance, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income Support, Pension Credit or Housing Benefit
If you were told to self-isolate after 28 September and meet the criteria you can claim online at www.peterborough.gov.uk/selfisolationpayment.
You will need your NHS Test and Trace ID number, bank statement, and proof of employment or self-assessment returns.
You will not be eligible if: you have not received a notification from NHS Test and Trace telling you to self-isolate; you continue to receive your full wages or have been furloughed; you can work from home during a period of self-isolation; your period of self-isolation ended before the scheme launched on 28 September; or you are quarantining after travelling abroad (unless you test positive). If your only notification to self-isolate as a close contact has come to you through the NHS Covid- 19 app, you can’t currently claim the payment because app users are anonymous. Further work is being done on this by central government.
Dr Liz Robin, Director of Public Health for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, said: “We need to continue to do all we can to control the spread of the virus. Self-isolation is one of the most powerful tools for controlling the transmission of Covid-19, and the Test and Trace Support payment ensures individuals on a low income are able to claim a £500 lump sum payment if they cannot work from home and are required to self-isolate. “We know that some people don’t feel they are financially able to self-isolate or may not be eligible.
Peterborough City Council does have other support available if this is the case – so please do not struggle and get in touch with us to seek support.”
Don’t suffer in silence this Christmas – get in touch with the Peterborough Hub
The Covid-19 pandemic has placed extra strain on all our lives and has meant that many people have needed to ask for help.
The Peterborough Co-ordination Hub, run by Peterborough City Council and a host of partners in the voluntary, charitable, community and faith sectors, public and private sector, has been supporting people since the pandemic hit in March – people who need help and support who don’t have a network of friends, family and neighbours to call upon.
And it will continue to do so this Christmas, so if you need help, please get in touch. It does not matter how small or big your problem is, the hub will do its best to help you.
The hub can provide lots of different help including:
- Debt advice and help with managing finances
- Access to food banks or food parcels
- Support with accessing medicines
- Support to self-isolate, either financial or through supplies
- Befriending services, including regular friendly phone calls
- Support with tasks around the home
- Emotional well-being support
Councillor John Holdich, leader of Peterborough City Council, said: “It has been a really tough year for many people and we know that Christmas will only add to the pressure.
“First and foremost we want people to use their own networks if possible, so friends, family and neighbours. But we know those networks don’t exist for everyone, or they may have broken down, and these are the people we want to hear from if they need help and support.
“The message to those residents, is please don’t struggle in silence. We are here to help, so please get in touch. It may be just a phone call from a friendly voice once a week, or support in sourcing food items, we have a bank of people waiting to help.
“There is a tremendous amount of work taking place every day, by both the Peterborough hub and many voluntary and charitable organisations which is helping to keep our residents safe, well and connected at this most difficult time.”
People who need help and support should get in touch with the Peterborough Coordination Hub by visiting www.peterborough.gov.uk or by calling 01733 747474. The hub is open Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm.
Organisations offering help city-wide can also be found on the Peterborough Information Network