Coronavirus (Covid-19) public health advice and current restrictions

Information about what you can do to limit the spread of the virus, and the current rules and advice that the government has asked us all to follow.

Many people in Lambeth, like the rest of England, may now be back to work and school with most legal restrictions for COVID-19 having been lifted. Nevertheless, the COVID-19 pandemic is not over.

The case rate has increased over the last week in Lambeth and the amount of hospital admissions with covid has increased also. It is important to remember that serious illness from COVID-19 can take 2 to 3 weeks to develop following infection and even those with mild or no symptoms can still go on to develop Long Covid.

With the current case rate, and that COVID-19 can spread easily in enclosed, crowded, and poorly ventilated spaces, it is important that everyone continues to act cautiously to help protect themselves and others. There are things you can keep doing to keep safe:

  • Washing your hands regularly
  • Wear face coverings on public transport and in indoor spaces. Face coverings remain one of the simplest and most effective ways of reducing the spread of Covid-19 and continue to remain an obligation when travelling with Transport for London, unless one has an exemption pass.
  • Be considerate of others and maintain a social distance when socialising with others outside your household, making this outdoors if possible.
  • Ensure ventilation of enclosed spaces by keeping doors/windows/vents open if meeting indoors
  • Testing regularly if you do not have symptoms and getting a PCR  test if you have COVID-19 symptoms. You must self-isolate if you test positive. For information on Covid-19 support, testing and public health advice visit lambeth.gov.uk/covid-19
  • Following guidance on return to workplaces
  • If you are told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace or pinged by the NHS COVID-19 app you must self-isolate – with the following caveats:

As of August 16th 2021

  • adults who are a close contact of a positive case will no longer have to self-isolate if they have been fully (double) vaccinated and do not have COVID-19 symptoms; however, they are advised to take a PCR test to confirm their condition.
  • anyone under 18 who is a close contact of a positive case and does not have COVID-19 symptoms will not need to self-isolate, only needing to self-isolate if they themselves test positive.

The vaccine is safe. Getting vaccinated is essential to keep yourself and others closest to you safe. If you haven’t taken up either your first or second jab yet, then please do so, as both doses are needed for maximum protection. How to book your COVID vaccine - South East London CCG (selondonccg.nhs.uk) You DO NOT need to be registered with GP, show your NHS number, or show your immigration status to be vaccinated. You DO, however, need to wait eight weeks between getting your first and second jab.

Testing remains important and will continue to be available locally

Those without COVID-19 symptoms are able to get regular rapid Covid-19 tests. Routine rapid testing is available to everyone through home testing, workplace testing, community testing, collection from test sites (currently Emma Cons Gardens) during specific collection windows, and collection from participating pharmacies. Details on where to get a rapid test can be found here: https://maps.test-and-trace.nhs.uk/ and here: https://beta.lambeth.gov.uk/coronavirus-covid-19/get-rapid-covid-19-test-if-you-have-no-symptoms  

Those with COVID-19 symptoms should immediately self-isolate, together with adults in household who are not fully vaccinated, and book a test online at https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test or ring 119).

Anyone who tests positive must self-isolate for 10 days and work with both local and NHS Test and Trace to identify any close contacts adults who are not yet vaccinated would also need to self-isolate

Support

Stay home safely support service

Lambeth’s Stay Home Safely support programme continues to be available for those who need assistance to be able to self-isolate such as help in doing the shopping - up to £738 is available for Lambeth residents on low incomes who may lose earnings from self-isolating or caring for someone who needs to stay at home due to Covid-19. Please visit : lambeth.gov.uk/self-isolate-help

Help with needs such as grocery delivery, dog walking or emotional support, and accommodation advice –for any Lambeth residents who have to self-isolate - Call free on 0800 054 1215

If you find it difficult to stay at home and self-isolate

Contact 0333 360 3700 or email mycommunity@ageuklambeth.org 

Mental health and wellbeing.

We know that this may be a challenging time and it is important that we continue to look after our mental health and wellbeing. For tips go to:

  • Guidance for the public on the mental health and wellbeing aspects of coronavirus (COVID-19) - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk) 

Vaccination - Who can get the COVID-19 vaccine

Children aged 12 to 15

Following the recent announcement by the Vaccines Minister, children aged 12 to 15 are eligible for their first COVID jab. All young people aged 12 to 15 can now book their first vaccine dose online. Parents and guardians of children will also be receiving letters regarding this, with rollout in schools. Some children aged 12-15 are eligible for two doses of the COVID-19 vaccination, and these include those who:

  • live with someone who is more likely to get infections (such as someone who has HIV, has had a transplant or is having certain treatments for cancer, lupus or rheumatoid arthritis)
  • they have a condition that means they're at high risk from COVID-19

Conditions that mean your child may be at high risk and can get vaccinated are:

  • a severe problem with the brain or nerves, such as cerebral palsy
  • Down's syndrome
  • severe or multiple learning disabilities (or they're on the learning disability register)
  • a condition that means they're more likely to get infections (such as some genetic conditions or types of cancer)

Young people aged 16 and 17

As of Monday August 23rd, all 16 and 17 year olds are eligible for their first jab of the COVID-19 vaccine. The NHS will notify those eligible about when and how to obtain the vaccination.  16-17 year olds can also book their first vaccine dose online. .

16 and 17 year olds will also soon be eligible for a second vaccine.

Adults over the age of 18

Anyone over 18 years old can have a vaccination. You DO NOT have to be registered with a GP to be vaccinated. The recommended minimum interval between the first and second COVID-19 vaccine is eight weeks.

Vulnerable and older people

Some individuals previously having previously received two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine will be eligible for booster vaccines. These include:

  • Care home residents
  • Health and social care workers
  • People aged over 40
  • Individuals aged 16-49 with underlying health conditions putting them at higher risk to contract COVID-19
  • Adult carers
  • Adult contacts of immunosuppressed individuals

The NHS will be contacting people eligible for booster vaccines directly.

For a list of the location of pop up clinics in Lambeth across South-East London, including answers to frequently asked questions please visit  https://www.nhsvaccinefacts.com/ .

Ruth Hutt, Lambeth’s Director of Public Health said: “ Getting vaccinated is the best way to protect yourself and your loved ones and to help us all get back to normal. Two doses are required for maximum protection including against new variants of the virus. Please take the opportunity to protect yourself, family and friends.”

Find out more about who can get a COVID-19 vaccinePreventing widespread transmission of COVID-19 is vital to maintain the progress made in the vaccination programme to date and to continue the government’s roadmap of easing coronavirus restrictions.

Booster vaccine

People aged 40 years and over, health and social care workers and younger people who are in at-risk groups are now being offered a booster dose of the covid-19 vaccine. The NHS will contact you when it is time for you to have a booster dose. These groups can also now book an appointment online or get their vaccine at a walk-in site without an appointment if it’s been at least 6 months since their second dose. Like some other vaccines, the level of protection from previous covid-19 vaccination may reduce over time. The booster dose will give you a longer-term protection and help reduce risk of being admitted into hospital due to covid-19 infection this winter. The booster will be offered at least 6 months after your last dose. You will be given either one of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines. You will be given the right vaccine for you; this could be the same or different from the vaccine you had previously.

Coronavirus Symptoms 

The main symptoms of coronavirus are: 

  • a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature) 
  • a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual) 
  • a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you've noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal 

If you experience any of these, you must self-isolate and book a free test immediately  (www.nhs/coronavirus or call 119). 

People living and working in Lambeth should test for Covid-19 if they feel unwell even with relatively mild symptoms.

When do you need to self-isolate?  

If any of the following applies  

  • have symptoms of Covid-19 and are waiting for a test  
  • have tested positive for Covid-19  
  • someone you live with has symptoms or tested positive (unless you are not required to self-isolate – check below if this applies to you)
  • If you have travelled to England and are not fully vaccinated (however this time may be less if you ‘test to release’)  Travel to England from another country during coronavirus (COVID-19) - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

As of August 16th:

  • adult double vaccinated close contacts of positive cases DO NOT have to self-isolate if they do not have COVID-19 symptoms if their second jab was more than 14 days previous, but they DO need to take a confirmatory PCR test and self-isolate if it is positive
  • unvaccinated adults (ie: those who have not received both jabs) who are identified as close contacts of positive cases MUST CONTINUE to self-isolate
  • children ( less than 18 years old) who are contacts of positive cases DO NOT need to self-isolate if they do not have COVID-19 symptoms, only doing so if a confirmatory PCR test indicates positive for COVID-19

For more information on how to self-isolate if you live alone, with others or with vulnerable people and what support you can access - https://beta.lambeth.gov.uk/covid-19-self-isolation-posters  

Stop the spread: Wash your hands, wear a mask & keep 2m distance from people not in your household #KeepLambethSafe 

 If you or anyone in your household have Covid-19 symptoms (new cough, high temperature, loss of taste or smell) book a free test immediately (www.nhs/coronavirus  or call 119) and self-isolate at home. If you find it difficult to stay at home and self-isolate, contact 0333 360 3700 or email mycommunity@ageuklambeth.org