COVID-19: council in contact with shielding residents

Anglesey Council are contacting adults and families of children with serious underlying health condition making them extremely vulnerable to Coronavirus.

Some 1200 residents on the island are included in ‘the Shielded Group’ as they are at the highest risk of severe illness.

Many have received a letter from the Welsh Government advising them to self-isolate for at least twelve weeks. Others will be added to the list as more letters are issued.

In the letter, Wales’ Chief Medical Officer, Dr Frank Atherton, urged shielded people to stay at home, at all times, and avoid all face-to-face contact – except for with essential carers and healthcare workers.

The shielding measures are designed to protect them from serious illness as well as taking pressure off the NHS providing the most acute care.

A very specific list of medical conditions chosen by experts in agreement across UK nations and includes cystic fibrosis, severe respiratory disorders, lung cancers and organ donation recipients. It does not include other health conditions such as diabetes or less severe asthma.

Council leader Llinos Medi said: ”Shielded residents are at the highest risk and must take extra care to avoid catching Coronavirus. The county council is working with the Welsh Government to keep them safe and well.”

”Our staff are a first point of contact for some individuals and have already spoken to 900 shielded people to ensure that their various needs – which include medicine and food – can be met.”

”We are also working in partnership with the island’s excellent volunteer network to ensure that there are volunteers on hand, should shielded people not be able to call upon the support of their own family, friends or local support network.”

Council staff are also able to advise on social contact and well-being support as well as the regular delivery of essential food and essential supplies.

Anglesey’s Director of Social Services, Alwyn Rhys Jones, added: ”The role of county council staff plays a crucial part in collective efforts to support many of the most vulnerable people in our communities during this challenging time.”

”We recognise that those in the Shielded Group are likely to feel very concerned about their situation. Our staff will therefore ensure that all contact is sensitive and considerate and seek to meet individuals’ needs as best as possible.”

The council is the first point of contact for shielded individuals if they have no other support network by calling 01248 750 057 and selecting option 9.

For full guidance and advice on shielding, visit the Welsh Government website.

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