Approximately 2,500 people in Oxford have been added to the shielding list following last week’s announcement from government that 1.7million people are being added to the shielding list nationally
These people have been identified as more understanding develops about how health conditions combine with genetic and lifestyle factors to increase the risks from coronavirus, and will receive a letter from the NHS to let them know what happens next. The City Council is contacting all these residents, by email where this is known or by post for others, to let them know what practical support they can call on to help them stay at home.
This will be an anxious time for many families, as those shielding are now advised to stay at home as much as possible. People shielding may need extra support with things like grocery shopping and collecting prescriptions, and they may have extra financial worries that the Council can help with, or connect them to the right support. This includes food support, help with utility bills, support for financial hardship, and tackling loneliness while shielding.
The Council is writing to each resident, and letters will be sent this week. The customer services team will also call a random sample of people to gage how people are doing and what support they need.
Residents needing help can contact the Council on 01865 249 811 Option 1, or visit our Essential support page.
“I know this will be a worrying time for people who have just been added to the shielding list. While it may be a shock for some, it is a positive step to give them better protection. By adding their names to the shielding list they are entitled to extra support like supermarket delivery slots and staying at home for work, and they will be prioritised for vaccination.
“Shielding can present some practical problems, but there is a lot of help available in Oxford. The Council is able to offer support and advice, and we can connect residents with amazing community groups and volunteers who provide anything from food support to dog walking. We’re working with partners in all our neighbourhoods to make sure people shielding don’t have to face their challenges alone. If you need help or advice to shield please get in touch.”
Councillor Louise Upton, Cabinet Member for a Safer, Healthy Oxford
The Government’s Covid-19 Response published yesterday clarified that shielding is not expected to be necessary beyond the end of March, but more detail will be provided nearer the time.