Life in and coming out of lockdown - carer support during COVID 19.

In the wake of this COVID-19 pandemic, it's important to know what support is available to you as a carer and those you look after. In Northern Ireland, you can find out about the current restrictions and rules to follow here. 

If you are worried that you or someone you look after may be at high risk from coronavirus, NHS 111 can offer direct guidance through their online coronavirus helpline. Call 111 if your (or their) symptoms become severe, and let them know you are a carer.

Wherever possible, we are all advised to strictly follow the social distancing rules

If you are caring for someone who is deemed to be extremely vulnerable, take extra precautionary measures if providing essential care and ensure you follow the NHS hygiene advice for people at higher risk.

It is vital to self-isolate and follow this guidance if you or the person you care for has symptoms. To combat rises in cases of COVID-19, there are restrictions in place. Find out about the latest rules in Northern Ireland.

As long as you have no COVID-19 symptoms and take every precaution, you are allowed to continue visiting someone who relies on you for care.

Ensure you continue taking careful measures such as wearing a face covering, frequently washing your hands and cleaning all shared surfaces, whilst minimising any contact where possible.

If you are providing essential care, it is vital to stop and self-isolate if you start having symptoms of COVID-19 – these include a loss of smell and taste or the more commonly known symptoms of a persistent cough or fever.

Some people are worried about having to prove they are a carer during the pandemic in order to travel and demonstrate they are exempt to certain rules.  In Northern Ireland, a new ID card has been released for carers – see this page for more information.

There are a number of ways a person with symptoms of the virus can arrange to get tested in Northern Ireland.  See this page for more info.

The use of face coverings is now required in certain indoor settings across Northern Ireland. This includes shops, shopping centres, public, private and school transport services, taxis, airplanes, public transport stations and airports, banks and some government offices..

For more information, see  'What's the latest guidance on face coverings?'

Unpaid carers are now in the Priority  6 group for Covid vaccinations. Just make sure your GP practice knows that you are caring for someone!  

A wide range of advice for carers from Department of Health can be found here 

Below you will find a comprehensive range of information and ways to access help to support you as a mental health caregiver to someone living with a serious mental illness during the pandemic and beyond.





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