19th September 2020
Latest information and advice including from the devolved governments:
The food and medicine boxes facilitated by the National Shielding Service will stop as of 1 August as individuals are advised they can visit shops and pharmacies. However, other forms of support – such as priority supermarket delivery slots and the NHS Volunteers Scheme, amongst a range of local volunteer schemes – will continue. If an individual is concerned about support after 1 August, they should contact their local authority.
The categorisation of ‘clinically extremely vulnerable’ will remain in place and people in this cohort should continue to follow the guidance specific to them, available here. After 1 August, we will continue to maintain the Shielded Patient List. We will monitor the virus continuously over the coming months and if it spreads too much, we may need to advise this group to shield again.
Shielding guidance has been and continues to be advisory.
Everybody in the ‘clinically extremely vulnerable’ categorisation will be written to from today outlining these steps.
‘Figures for coronavirus show that we are now getting an increase in the number of cases to about 3000 per day in England but the number of deaths seems to be levelling off. Other regions of the UK are also experiencing increases in cases and the need for vigilance is still with us.
There are pockets of higher infections around the country and if you would like to check the latest information for your area a good source is here.
The good news is that researchers all over the world and especially the UK have developed vaccines which are undergoing trials which seem to show some very positive results.
Therapies have been developed which can be used for patients who get very ill such as the steroids dexamethasone and recently hydrocortisone, and inhaled interferons – again the studies for these trials have mainly been carried out in the UK.
In the last 6 months much has been learnt about this virus and the progress the scientific and medical community has made will help to tackle the second wave that will inevitably come this winter.
The flu virus, of course, will make identifying the coronavirus more difficult as they have very similar symptoms.
For this reason, it is important that all CLL patients and their families receive the flu vaccination as soon as possible. Some GPs are already making appointments for September, and Boots chemists and other high street chemists are doing the same.
Lockdown and shielding advice was eased across England from 18 August, Wales from 16 August, Northern Ireland from 31 July and Scotland from 27 August. Different advice and conditions apply in each country and the relevant details can be found on the links below:
Our advice to all CLL patients remains the same: you should still take extra care; keep strict social distancing as far as possible; have close contact only with those people within your ‘bubbles’; wear face masks when in confined spaces; wash hands frequently.
The level of risk each individual will be prepared to take will vary from person to person, but you should be aware that CLL patients are extremely vulnerable to the Covid virus.
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CLL is a malignancy of B lymphocytes, one of several types of cells of the immune system.Read more
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