Covid-19 & Winter
As Winter approaches, we continue to advise that there are safer behaviours you can adopt to reduce the risk of COVID-19 infection. Precautions remain particularly important to those who are at higher risk if they catch COVID-19.
Individuals can reduce the risk of catching and passing on COVID-19 by:
· Letting fresh air in if meeting indoors or meeting outside.
· Wearing a face covering in crowded and enclosed spaces, especially where you encounter people you do not usually meet, when rates of transmission are high.
· Trying to stay at home if you are unwell.
· Taking a test if you have COVID-19 symptoms and staying at home and avoiding contact with other people if you test positive.
· Washing your hands and following advice to ‘Catch it, Bin it, Kill it’.
· Getting vaccinated. COVID-19 vaccines remain the most important and effective way the public can protect themselves and others from becoming seriously ill or dying from the virus.
· We recommend that eligible persons also receive winter flu vaccination as more people are likely to get flu this winter and you’re more likely to become seriously ill if you have flu and COVID-19 at the same time.
Know which symptoms to look out for
Respiratory infections can spread easily between people. It is important to be aware of symptoms so you can take actions to reduce the risk of spreading the infection to other people. The symptoms of COVID-19 and other respiratory infections are very similar, so it is not possible to tell if you have COVID-19, flu or another infection based on symptoms alone which include:
· continuous cough
· high temperature, fever, or chills
· loss of, or change in, your normal sense of taste or smell
· shortness of breath
· unexplained tiredness, lack of energy
· muscle aches or pains that are not due to exercise
· not wanting to eat or not feeling hungry
· headache that is unusual or longer lasting than usual
· sore throat, stuffy or runny nose
· diarrhoea, feeling sick or being sick
You can find information about these symptoms on the NHS website.
Some helpful resources:
- COVID-19 Response: Living with COVID-19 – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
- COVID-19 supplement to the infection prevention and control resource for adult social care – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
- Reducing spread of respiratory infections and COVID-19 at work (publishing.service.gov.uk)
- Reducing the spread of respiratory infections, including COVID-19, in the workplace – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)