Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
We have made a list of questions we are most often asked. We will update these regularly.
Question: What do I need to do at the moment?
If you live in Cheshire West, you should
- keep to the rule of six (see information below)
- wash hands regularly
- wear a face covering in places where social distancing may be difficult, if you are able to
- keep two metres apart from other people in public places
- Get a test if you have any of the symptoms of coronavirus by using the NHS website www.nhs.uk/coronavirus
There are different rules in other places where there are local restrictions. This includes Bolton, Halton and Warrington. You should check what the rules are in your local area.
There is more up to date (22 September 2020) advice about what you can and can’t do here https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-outbreak-faqs-what-you-can-and-cant-do/coronavirus-outbreak-faqs-what-you-can-and-cant-do
Question: What is the rule of six?
From Monday 14 September 2020, it is against the law to meet socially in groups of more than six people indoors or outdoors apart from:
- If there are more than 6 people in one household or ‘support bubble’
- At schools, colleges and workplaces
- Weddings, wedding receptions and funerals, up to 30 people
- Organised sport and exercise
Question: What is the latest guidance for people who get a Direct Payment?
Answer: The latest guidance (September 2020) and easy read version is available here:
Question: I am worried about the new rules that I will have to wear a face covering in shops. I would find this very difficult, what should I do?
Answer: The government has announced that from 24 July 2020 people will need to wear a face covering in shops, in the same way as they do on public transport unless they are not able to do so because of a disability or health condition.
The guidance makes it very clear that you do not have to wear a face covering if your disability or health condition makes it difficult for you to.
There is also guidance on what to do if other people wearing masks makes it difficult for you to understand what is being said.
The full guidance is available here
Question: I am confused about the changes to the shielding scheme. What is going to happen?
Answer: The government has announced that if you been ‘shielding’ (staying at home because you are very vulnerable to coronavirus) then you can start to meet up with groups of up to 6 people outdoors from 6th July, and you can stop shielding completely after the 1st August 2020.
We will update this page with information and guidance on this when we can.
Guidance is available here https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-on-shielding-and-protecting-extremely-vulnerable-persons-from-covid-19/guidance-on-shielding-and-protecting-extremely-vulnerable-persons-from-covid-19
Question: I have a disability that makes it difficult to wear a mask, but I’ve heard that I have to wear one to use public transport, is this true?
Answer: No. If you have a disability that makes it difficult to wear a mask you do not have to wear one. There is guidance available here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-safer-travel-guidance-for-passengers#exemptions-face-coverings
Question: Can I get a Coronavirus/Covid-19 test for me and/or my personal assistant?
Answer: Yes, if you or your personal assistant has the symptoms below you can get a test. Symptoms are:
-A high temperature. Feeling hot, you do not need to take your temperature
– A new, continuous cough. Coughing a lot for more than an hour
– If you feel you have lost your sense of taste or smell, or your sense of taste or smell has changed
To get a test for your personal assistant (and anyone they live with) they will need to use the government’s self referral portal for essential workers https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-getting-tested#how-to-arrange-a-test
To get a test for yourself, you will need to use the NHS website www.nhs.uk/coronavirus
If you can’t use the website you can use the new NHS phone service to arrange a test by calling 119.
Question : What if my Personal Assistant is off sick and cannot get a sick note?
Answer: Please write down the dates your personal assistant was off sick and let your payroll provider know these dates by email. Your Personal Assistant can give you a sick note at a later date. Please keep the sick note with your Direct Payment records.
If your Personal Assistant is self- isolating because of coronavirus symptoms they do not need a sick note and will get Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) as normal.
Question: Can I get Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) for my Personal Assistant?
If you or anyone one who lives with you has symptoms of coronavirus this can be provided free of charge. If your Personal Assistant normally gets PPE to support you, this should continue.
If your direct payment contains funding to purchase PPE for your Personal Assistant, you should continue to use that funding to purchase PPE.
If you live in Lancashire there is a supply of PPE available at the office of our partner, Disability Equality North West. You can contact them by email at [email protected]
If you live in Cheshire, please contact your Arrangement of Care and Support Adviser at Disability Positive who will be able to help you.
If you live in Bolton, we will update details as soon as we can.
. There is also government guidance if you receive a direct payment available here https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-for-people-receiving-direct-payments
Our services during the coronavirus outbreak
We are here to help, so please let us know if you are struggling. We will do our best to help you.
Our services will not be doing any home visits until further notice although we can still support you by phone or by video phone (For example, Facetime).
Please call us on 01606 331 853 if you need any support.
Community engagement activities including Good Company, Buzz Group will run weekly calls by Zoom. We are planning to run some small social distanced in person activities from in October and November if we can
We are doing wellbeing checks with all of our customers, to check that you are ok and if you need anything.
What is coronavirus?
COVID-19 or coronavirus is a new illness that has infected many people around the world.
An easy read guide to coronavirus is available here, produced by Inclusion North
If you have it, you may have a fever (high temperature) and a cough. You may also loose your sense of smell and taste. Sometimes this can get worse and become severe pneumonia (a chest infection) which can make it difficult to breathe.
If you have a long term health condition, are older, or have a weakened immune system, coronavirus can be much more serious.
If you think you have the symptoms (the signs of having coronavirus) you should use the NHS website or call 111. The website will ask about your symptoms and you may be asked to go for a test. https://111.nhs.uk/covid-19
Do not contact your GP unless you are not well.
Links to advice on coronavirus
Below are links to general advice and information
These links are to information or support not managed by Disability Positive but may be useful:
- Coronavirus overview – nhs.uk website
- Guidance on Covid-19 for people who receive a Direct Payment GOV.UK website
- Frequently Asked Questions for people who employ a Personal Assistant -Skills for Care website
- Easy read guide to coronavirus
- Coronavirus: NHS Advice – nhs.uk website
- NHS Coronavirus 111 Service
- Coronavirus: latest information and advice – GOV.UK website
- Cheshire West and Chester Council Coronavirus information
- Live Well Cheshire West and Chester – advice and information
- Cheshire East Council Coronavirus Information
- Lancashire County Council Coronavirus Information
- Bolton Council Coronavirus Information
- Government advice on Coronavirus for supporting living and home care gov.uk website
- Advice on Coronavirus for carers from Carers UK
- Facebook support group ‘The Bunker’. This is a support group for disabled people who are self isolating and employ a personal assistant.
- Disability Rights UK
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