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Coronavirus

Updated on 12th March 2020 at 4:29 pm

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Coronavirus (COVID-19)

National lockdown: Stay at Home

Advice in your region:

England | Scotland | Wales | Northern Ireland | Ireland


Stay at home to stop coronavirus spreading

What you can and cannot do during the national lockdown

You must stay at home. The single most important action we can all take is to stay at home to protect the NHS and save lives.

You should follow this guidance immediately. This is the law.

Leaving home

You must not leave, or be outside of your home except where necessary. You may leave the home to:

  • shop for basic necessities, for you or a vulnerable person
  • go to work, or provide voluntary or charitable services, if you cannot reasonably do so from home
  • exercise with your household (or support bubble) or one other person (in which case you should stay 2m apart). Exercise should be limited to once per day, and you should not travel outside your local area.
  • meet your support bubble or childcare bubble where necessary, but only if you are legally permitted to form one
  • seek medical assistance or avoid injury, illness or risk of harm (including domestic abuse)
  • attend education or childcare – for those eligible

If you do leave home for a permitted reason, you should always stay in your local area – unless it is necessary to go further, for example to go to work.

Staying in your local area means stay in the village, town, or part of the city where you live.

If you are clinically extremely vulnerable you are advised to only go out for medical appointments, exercise or if it is essential. We recommend that you do not attend work

Important – These reasons are exceptions – even when doing these activities, you should be minimising time spent outside of the home and ensuring you are 2 metres apart from anyone outside of your household.

There is separate advice about staying at home if:

Symptoms and what to do

Do not leave your home if you have either:

  • 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)

To protect others, do not go to places like a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital. Stay at home.

Use the 111 online coronavirus service to find out what to do.

Only call 111 if you cannot get help online.

Important – Call 111 for advice if you’re worried about a baby or child.

If they seem very unwell, are getting worse or you think there’s something seriously wrong, call 999.

Do not delay getting help if you’re worried. Trust your instincts.

Help the NHS respond to coronavirus

Use the quick NHS coronavirus status checker to tell us about your current experience of the virus.

This will help the NHS plan its response to coronavirus by showing where the virus is spreading and how it affects people.

Read general information such as: