There are around 2.2 million clinically extremely vulnerable people in England with underlying severe health conditions who must be protected from coronavirus and have been advised to follow shielding guidance.
These are people of all ages –with specific medical conditions identified by the NHS – who are at greater risk of severe illness from coronavirus.
From Saturday 1 August, advice to those shielding was relaxed.
The clinically extremely vulnerable should stay at home as much as possible, and if people do go out, take particular care to minimise contact with others outside their household (unless they are in a support bubble) and robustly practising good, frequent hand washing.
However, the relaxation of the guidance means people who are clinically extremely vulnerable can go to work or to the shops, as long as they are able to maintain social distancing.
The NHS will continue to maintain the Shielded Patient List allowing it to continue to maintain targeted advice and support to this cohort and to change advice and support if incidence rises.
The government continues to review the risks for the clinically extremely vulnerable as they review social distancing advice for the general population.
Updated advice will continue to be reflected in the guidance for clinically extremely vulnerable people.
Several supermarkets have given access to priority supermarket delivery slots, and these will continue beyond the end of July for those already signed up for support.
NHS Volunteer Responders will also continue to offer support to those who need it, including collecting and delivering food and medicines.
If you are vulnerable or at risk and need help with shopping, medication or other essential supplies, please call 0808 196 3646 (8am to 8pm).
We will continue to hold a list of those people identified as clinically vulnerable in case further contact is needed in the future relating to COVID-19.