Covid-19 (Coronavirus) - Keeping safe and well
COVID-19 is an illness that can affect your lungs and airways. It's caused by a virus called coronavirus. This page will be updated regularly with information and guidance for patients, carers, friends and family.
Our staff understand that these are worrying times and that you and your loved ones will have lots of concerns, particularly about your loved ones. We understand those concerns and are here to help you throughout it.
The latest information on symptoms of Coronavirus infection as well as advice on looking after yourself and what to do if you are a carer can be found on nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/.
As a Trust, our top priority remains the safety of our patients and staff and as the Covid-19 situation continues to evolve we are working with NHS England and our staff to ensure that we are working in line with Government guidance. This means that sometimes we may make changes to the way we deliver patient care. We will only do this to protect our patients and staff and to ensure the whole NHS system works together to protect those whose need is greatest.
We are taking great precautions and changing ways of working across our services during the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure the safety of all our staff and patients.
We are offering more virtual (online or telephone) appointments, to ensure that patients are only brought on-site where necessary, helping us to adhere to social distancing. Please refer to the information in your appointment letter to confirm how your appointment will take place. If you need any support using digital methods to access a virtual appointment, please call the number on your letter and we will help you get this. If you wish to request a face-to-face appointment, please call us and we will try to accommodate this.
Face-to-face appointments: Please do not attend your appointment if you have COVID-19 symptoms (a high temperature, a new continuous cough or a loss of sense of taste / smell) or if you or your family are self-isolating.
When you visit our sites:
- Wear a face covering. We will provide you with one if needed. Children under 12, and anyone with an exemption, will not need to wear a mask, in line with government guidelines.
- To minimise the risk of infection, and to support social distancing, we need to limit the number of people on-site. So we ask you to attend your appointment alone, unless you have assistance or communication needs.
- Only one parent or carer can attend with each child. We are able to make exceptions if a second carer is needed to support the child because of their additional needs. We will do our best to accommodate in these circumstances, but please call us in advance so we can discuss and make arrangements.
- Please arrive no more than 10 minutes early for your appointment, ensure you sanitise your hands upon arrival and respect social distancing guidance during your visit, including while with your clinician.
A number of voluntary groups across South West London are offering their help to those who are unable to leave their homes during this difficult time. We have compiled a list of voluntary groups across Wandsworth, Merton, Richmond, Sutton and Kingston and have also included contact details for those services if you need them. You can find a full list of volunteer services here.
You can find lots of helpful information and guidance:
- NHS Website: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/
- Gov.uk: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance
Find out about:
The symptoms and how to get a test for Coronavirus here
Staying at home and self isolating here
Social distancing and changes to everyday life here
Support in a crisis
Please only attend A and E if you have an emergency with your physical health. The Mental Health Support Line can help and direct you to the right service for your mental health.
If you are already a patient at our Trust, between the hours of 9am-5pm Monday to Friday we encourage you to call the mental health team that looks after you. You can find their contact details here. Otherwise, please contact the 24/7 Mental Health Support Line.
If you are calling urgently from a partner agency and require support and direction, you are encouraged to also contact the 24/7 Mental Health Support Line.
If you are Deaf, you can call our Mental Health Support Line using Sign Live Video Relay Service (VRS):
- On a computer, go to https://signlive.co.uk/login/ and register using Facebook, Google or email
- On phone, iPad or tablet download SignLive’s app for free and register
You will then be able to call the Trust for free.
Guidance on children and young people under the age of 18 in mental health crisis
For A&E staff
If a young person presents to A&E, follow the normal process and make a referral to the CAMHS Emergency Care Service (CECS) by completing the referral form and telephoning our duty number: 0203 513 6239 or 07870 917 114. Referrals will be screened for appropriateness, and a telephone or video assessment will be offered in the first instance. Face-to-face assessments in A&E will occur when clinically indicated.
For professionals including GPs, social workers and education on SWSLTG Crisis Service for Young People and Families.We understand that Covid-19 has impacted young people/families in lots of different ways. CAMHS is still here to provide support; at times we will continue to do this by phone or video.
If a young person is currently a CAMHS service user, please call the appropriate CAMHS team to speak with the duty worker Mondays to Friday between 9am -5pm:
- Sutton: 020 3513 3800
- Merton: 0208 254 8061
- Wandsworth: 0203 513 4644
- Kingston: 0203 513 5183/5321
- Richmond: 0203 513 3238
At weekends and Bank Holidays and between 5pm-9am, please call the Mental Health Support Line (MHSL) on 0800 028 8000If a young person is not currently a CAMHS service user, professionals can call the local Single Point of Access team (9am-5pm) for advice. However, if an emergency response is needed, please telephone the 24/7 the Mental Health Support Line on 0800 028 8000.
Other helpful numbers
- Childline 0800 1111 – calls are free and confidential
- HOPE line UK 0800 068 4141
- Samaritans 116 123
- Young Minds Crisis Messenger - provides free, 24/7 crisis support across the UK mental health crisis - if you need urgent help text YM to 85258
- If you need medical attention for a life threatening emergency call 999 or attend your local A&E
All visitors must ensure they wash their hands thoroughly before entering the unit must wear a mask at all times which they are required to wear throughout their stay on the ward/department.
Family and Friends are asked to not visit even in the above circumstances if they:
- Should be self-isolating
- Are unwell or have any of the symptoms of coronavirus – a high temperature, a new, continuous cough, or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste
- Are vulnerable or aged 70+
- Are aged less than 12 (except with the ward manager’s permission)
Information for patients on Clozapine
If you are not well, please let your clozapine clinic know before you attend the clinic for your blood test. They will talk through with you if you need to come in or if we can send you a small additional supply of your medicine until you are feeling better.
In some circumstances we may be able to visit you at home to carry out your blood test.
Leisure and keeping occupied
With this in mind, we have assembled some uplifting and hopefully enjoyable resources for you explore.
We hope you find something that suits you!
Managing a routine and daily living at home
With this in mind, we have brought together some resources that you might find helpful over the coming weeks.
Hopefully it will not be for too long, keep safe and keep connected to others if you possibly can, that will help!
Information and ideas for children and families
- Self care for young people - www.annafreud.org/on-my-mind/self-care/
- Young minds advice for young people - https://youngminds.org.uk/find-help/looking-after-yourself/coronavirus-and-mental-health/
- Young minds advice for parents to support children and young people - https://youngminds.org.uk/find-help/for-parents/supporting-your-child-during-the-coronavirus-pandemic/
- Royal College Of Occupational Therapists advice for families - www.rcot.co.uk/staying-well-when-social-distancing
Information and resources for carers
Information and resources for older people
The various restrictions that have been put in place, ranging from the closure of important services such as day care, to the prohibition of visits to care homes affects older people more than most, particularly those with dementia and their carers.
As such we hope that you find the guidance and resources below helpful.
General Guidance and information:
- COVID-19: information for families looking after someone with dementia Dementia UK this includes information on self isolation, tips on activities, games and physical exercise as well as helplines
- Alzheimer Europe Living-with-dementia/COVID-19 Alzheimer Europe has collected resources on support for person with dementia and their carer and these will be updated on regular basis
- COVID 19 tips-for-dementia-caregivers Alzheimer’s Society This paper provides guidance for carers as well as professionals and includes ideas on managing ‘wandering’, responding to dementia related behaviours and social isolation
- Support for people with Dementia COVID-19 Alzheimer’s Society Information and support for people with dementia who may be feeling lonely and isolated
- Corona virus: Guidance for people with dementia and their carers Alzheimer Scotland 2 page leaflet outlining recognising the symptoms of virus, avoiding it and useful tips around exercise and ways ofhttps://www.ageuk.org.uk/information-advice/coronavirus/staying-safe-and-well-at-home/social-distancing-and-self-isolation/ reducing isolation.
- Advice on Social Distancing (Age UK)
- corona virus online free therapy sessions : voluntary therapists over the phone
- Contact your local social services, many of whom have set up a network of volunteers to help with things like shopping
Guidance for family carers
In the latter case, if the person’s care needs are such that any remote support will not be sufficient, the family carers should adhere to the social distancing guidelines ie washing hands immediately on arrival, no physical contact, keeping a distance of 2m wherever possible and keeping visits as short as possible.
Information and advice or people with learning difficulties
The following information supports the learning disability population understand the information in a format that uses pictures and easy to read language.
- The University of Glasgow: Access the Self-help Booklet (14 KB)
- SWLSTG SaLT Face Mask Communication Tips (271 KB)
- Supporting Children with LD ASD with COVID Isolation (5) (2.55 MB)
- PPE Poster (1.03 MB)
- PPE easy read covid 19 (1.57 MB)
- COVID 19 LD Information Pack (5.86 MB)
- Easy read wearing oxygen mask (580 KB)
- Having swabs taken easy read (407 KB)
- LD Senate or use by families 27 3 2020 (1.74 MB)
- LD Senate Coronavirus resources for use with people with learning disabilities 30 3 2020 (5.08 MB)
Safeguarding and Covid-19: Keeping everyone safe
Families are under increased amounts of stress due to financial pressures, household isolation, school closures and lack of normal outlets for stress and frustrations.
Adults are at increased risk of financial exploitation by some pretending to help under the guise of ‘COVID kindness’.
Children, young people and adults who are already at risk of abuse or neglect may be more at risk as the normal support mechanisms for them are not in place. Many children and adults may be struggling without the regular contact and support they get from friends, workmates or school.
Self or household isolation could mean some people are trapped in their homes with abusers and isolated from people who can help them.
Here are some useful contacts and websites you may find helpful at this time.
Are you experiencing domestic abuse? You are not alone.
- National Domestic Violence Helpline 0808 2000 247
- Women’s Aid online chat service (Monday-Friday 10am-12pm)
- Men’s Advice Line 0808 801 0327
- NSPCC Helpline 0808 800 5000 or email email@example.com
- Specific advice on managing self-isolation and anxiety about coronavirus here.
Other useful websites and resources
- Merton Council Coronavirus information
- Sutton Council Coronavirus information
- Wandsworth Council Coronavirus information
- Wandsworth Council Community Hub
- Kingston Council Coronavirus information
- Richmond Council Coronavirus information
- Carers UK
- Carers Support Merton
- Wandsworth Carers Centre
- Kingston Carers Network
- Richmond Carers Centre
- Sutton Carers Centre
- Mind - Coronavirus and your wellbeing
- Rethink Covid 19 support