Welfare - Health and care

The NHS is here for you

Local health services never stopped helping people and they will continue to be here when you need them. 

There are measures in place at GP Practices, clinics and hospitals to keep you safe. These include:

  • One-way systems
  • Hand sanitiser
  • Wear face coverings
  • You may be offered a temperature check
  • Social distancing
  • Colour coded areas to reduce the risk of people mixing
  • You may be offered an appointment with your GP or hospital consultant on the phone or on video online, this is to reduce the number of people being seen face to face, where it is appropriate to do so.

The NHS is working hard to ensure emergency and urgent treatments including cancer and specialist mental health services continue.

If you are invited for an appointment please make sure you go, unless you are showing symptoms of COVID-19. Please don't put your health at risk by missing planned care.

The NHS is busy during the pandemic, but you should still seek help if you need support with your mental or physical health.

Please choose wisely and use the most appropriate services for your needs:

  • Call 111 or visit 111.nhs.uk -for 24-hour advice on any healthcare need.
  • Pharmacy - trained professionals can prescribe medicines and give advice for many common conditions.
  • GP - for ongoing or persistent medical issues.
  • Minor injuries and Urgent Treatment Centres - for urgent but not life-threatening issues.
  • A&E - for life-threatening and serious emergencies only.

If you are invited to an appointment, please make sure you go unless you are showing symptoms of COVID-19. Measures are in place to keep patients safe from COVID-19, so please don't put your health at risk by missing planned care.

Maternity guidance

If you're pregnant, and are worried about your maternity care, talk to your midwife about the

arrangements that are now in place to allow your partner to be with you as much as possible (for example, for scans and during the birth).

COVID-19 vaccination

The COVID-19 vaccination programme is already protecting people across Cumbria. The most vulnerable groups of people are being vaccinated first, and you'll be contacted by the NHS when it's your turn. Your GP practice is busy seeing patients as normal alongside delivering vaccinations, so please don't contact them to ask when you are likely to receive your vaccination appointment.

Criminals may seek to take advantage of the roll out of the COVID-19 vaccine to

commit fraud. Remember: The COVID-19 vaccine will only be available via the NHS.

  • The COVID-19 vaccine will always be available free of charge from the NHS.
  • The NHS will never ask you to share your bank details to confirm your identity.

For more information on scams and how to report them, visit the Action Fraud website.

If you are an unpaid carer for someone you do not live with you can still visit them in their home to provide care. 

You can continue to provide unpaid childcare support to someone you do not live with if you are in a childcare support bubble.

Find out more on the Gov.uk website.

Everyone in England, including those who are clinically extremely vulnerable, is required to follow the new national lockdown guidance, which has been set out by the government and applies to the whole population.

If you're clinically extremely vulnerable it is recommended that you do not attend work, school, college or university. You should limit the time you spend outside the home. You are advised to only go out for medical appointments, exercise or if it is essential.

Go to the Gov.uk website for the latest advice.

Everyone is entitled to live safely without fear of violence or abuse, and even with COVID-19 restrictions in place, you can leave home to seek help if you are suffering abuse.

Always call 999 in an emergency if someone is at immediate risk of harm.

If you, or someone you know is suffering from domestic abuse, help is available. Call 101, or report online. You can also contact Victim Support Cumbria on 0300 3030 157.

If you have significant concerns about a child please contact the Cumbria Safeguarding Hub, on 0333 240 1727.

If you are concerned that an adult is at risk of abuse or neglect, please call:

  • Copeland and Allerdale 0300 303 3589.
  • Carlisle and Eden 0300 303 3249.
  • Furness and South Lakes 0300 303 2704.
  • Out of Hours 01228 526690.

Every year people catch colds, the flu or the winter vomiting bug.

You can do your best to protect yourself by washing your hands, staying at home if you feel unwell and having the flu jab if you are in one of the eligible groups.

You can also make sure you are stocked up with over the counter medicines to ease your symptoms, such as paracetamol and ibuprofen in tablet or drink form, you might find cough remedies helpful. You should also stock up on tissues so you can catch your germs and bin the tissues to avoid the risk of spreading your illness.

Go to the NHS website for more advice and guidance.