The 3 ways lockdown has eased for millions on coronavirus shielding list TODAY


MORE than 2.2 million clinically extremely vulnerable people have been shielding since March due to the coronavirus outbreak in the UK.

From today guidance for those who are in the shielded group will ease, as infections continue to fall in most areas of the country.

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People who are in this group include those suffering from terminal illness, people who have had organ transplants and others who have severe asthma and respiratory conditions.

So far in the UK more than 44,000 people have died from Covid-19 and at the beginning of the pandemic the government took steps to make sure the most vulnerable would be safe.

These steps included the delivery of food packages to those who did not have relatives or a support network who were able to go to the supermarket for them.

This was enabled through the National Support Service, and medication was also delivered through this project.



People who are in the shielded group have been some of the most isolated during the lockdown.

But the lifting of some restrictions will make it easier for some to spend time with their loved ones while remaining safe.

It comes as the Government today revealed tens of thousands of high-risk children on the shielding list will be able to come off it at the end of this month, as youngsters are at “low risk” of severe illness.

So if you’ve been shielding, here’s what you’ll be able to do from today if you live in England or Northern Ireland.

This will be a welcome change to many people who have been shielding.

Government guidance states that from Monday, you will be able to meet up with groups of up to six people.

The gatherings have to be held outdoors and the people can be from six different households.

The government did however stress that social distancing would need to be maintained.

Families and households where one person is on the shielded list have had a tough time as they have had to stay two metres away from others.

This has also meant that people have had to stop sharing facilities such as toilets and kitchens.

Where this has not been possible it was advised to thoroughly clean the facility after each use.

The government has now said that you will no longer have to keep a distance from those in the same household as you.

If you are an adult living alone or a single parent with a child under the age of 18 then you will be able to form a support bubble from Monday.

This means you can spend time together in each others homes without needing to socially distance from each other.

This also means that you can stay overnight at each others homes.

Despite the relaxation the government has stressed that those who are shielding should try and work from home were possible and has asked employers to be flexible in these discussions.

Commenting on the changes to shielding guidance Alison Cook, director of external affairs at Asthma UK and the British Lung Foundation said people are still feeling anxious despite the lifting of restrictions.

“Some of the 500,000 people shielding in England with a lung condition will now be able to meet up outdoors with friends and family, which will be a welcome relief after months of isolation.

“However we know that many people with lung conditions are feeling understandably anxious at the prospect of being outside in public spaces, where their safety could be compromised if others behave carelessly.”

She highlighted that Covid cases are rising in some areas and said the public still needs to play its part in helping those who been shielding.

“We’ve all seen anecdotally that a minority of people are disregarding rules on social distancing but for those who have been shielding this can make the difference between people feeling they can go out or remaining trapped in their houses.

“We really need everyone to keep practising social distancing, wear face coverings where advised to, and be mindful that not all health conditions are visible.”


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