More people in Bristol to be added to the COVID-19 shielding list

The number of people being asked to shield in England will see a large increase – following the government announcement yesterday (Wednesday 17 February).

An extra 1.7 million people are expected to be added to the 2.3 million already on the list.

The announcement comes after the development of a new model by the University of Oxford, which takes into account other factors rather than just health.

This includes ethnicity, deprivation (by postcode) and weight to work out a person’s risk of becoming seriously ill if they caught COVID-19.

It also looks at age, underlying health issues and prescribed medications.

The council estimates this will bring around 7,000 more people in Bristol into the shielding programme.

All those newly identified will get a letter from their GP suggesting they shield until at least 31 March. They will also have priority for vaccinations.

Those who do chose to shield will qualify for medical and supermarket deliveries through their local authority, as well as and statutory sick pay.

Support is available to anyone shielding in Bristol. For help with shopping, dog walking, collecting prescriptions and befriending call the We Are Bristol helpline 0800 012 6549.

For free emotional and mental health support, please call the local 24/7 Support and Connect helpline on 0800 012 6549.

See the government guidance on shielding and protecting extremely vulnerable people.