Get help if you are clinically extremely vulnerable to coronavirus

Some residents have been identified by the NHS as being clinically extremely vulnerable as they have a very specific medical condition that makes them at higher risk of severe illness if they contract COVID-19.

The Government is advising those in this category to follow very careful guidance to ensure they can stay safe and well.

Latest update

If you are in this category, the Government has now published updated guidance which you are advised to follow from Wednesday 2 December 2020. This replaces previous guidance on shielding that was in place during the four-week period of national restrictions.

The new guidance is based on the local restriction tier system. Wandsworth is currently in Tier 2: High alert.

Going to shops and pharmacies

You are advised to reduce the number of shopping trips you make. If you do go to the shops including pharmacies, consider doing so at quieter times of the day. Consider using online delivery slots for food shopping or ask friends and family to help deliver shopping or collect medicines for you. If you need further assistance with food shopping or medicine collection, NHS Volunteer Responders may be able to help.


You should continue to work from home where possible. If you cannot work from home, you can still attend your workplace as your workplace should be COVID-secure. 


Everyone is advised to minimise travel and to avoid busy times and busy routes where possible. In addition, we advise clinically extremely vulnerable people to avoid travel where possible except for going to work, school, or for essential shopping.

Socialising inside and outside the home

At Tier 2: High, you must not meet with people indoors in any setting unless they are part of your household or support bubble. You may continue to see friends and family you do not live with outside, including in a garden or other outdoor space. If you do so, you must not meet in a group of more than six. At this alert level, our additional advice for clinically extremely vulnerable people is that you keep the number of different people you meet with consistently low. You should always stay at least two metres away from other people visiting your home.

Additional care and support

You should continue to receive care at home, either from professional social care and medical professionals, or from friends and family within your support bubble.

You should continue to access the NHS services that you need, and you should contact the NHS if you have an urgent or emergency care need.

Advice to the clinically extremely vulnerable has been and remains advisory.

Advice during the Christmas period

From 23 to 27 December, the Government will be changing some restrictions on social contact, allowing people to form a 'Christmas bubble', in which you can spend time indoors and outdoors, including in your home, with people from up to three households including your own.

You can choose to be part of a Christmas bubble if you are clinically extremely vulnerable, but it does involve greater risks for you as you will be increasing the number of people you have contact with. You will continue to minimise your risk of infection if you limit social contact with people that you do not live with, even at Christmas. It is important that you and the other people in your Christmas bubble consider these risks carefully before agreeing to form a bubble. Forming a Christmas bubble is a personal choice and should be balanced against the increased risk of infection.


The Government food boxes have now stopped and are not due to be reintroduced. However, there are a number of ways you can still access support.

If you already receive a priority supermarket delivery slot, you should continue to receive this.

Vulnerable or housebound residents can also order shopping via telephone with Sainsbury’s or Morrisons for next day delivery. To place an order with Sainsbury’s, call 0800 9178 557 Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm. To place an order with Morrisons, call 0345 611 6111 Sunday to Tuesday 9am to 5pm, Wednesday to Saturday 9am to 5.30pm and select option five. Morrisons customers can choose from a list of 47 essential items.

The NHS Volunteer Responders can continue to go shopping for you and pick up prescriptions. A check in and chat service is available for regular talks over the phone. You can contact them by calling 0808 196 3646 8am to 8pm, seven days a week. More information is available on the NHS Volunteer Responders website.

For those who are struggling with finances as a result of COVID-19, you can apply for the Council’s discretionary support grants.

If you are feeling anxious, worried or overwhelmed during this period, please have a look at our list of mental health resources.

If you are in this group and need urgent support

Please contact our Community Hub:

If you don't currently have your prescriptions collected or delivered

You can arrange this by:

  • Asking someone who can pick up your prescription to do so from the local pharmacy
  • Contacting your pharmacy to ask them to help you find a volunteer (who will have been ID checked) to deliver it to you. You can find your local pharmacy online