Help for vulnerable residents in Cornwall

 

From Cornwall Council:

Vulnerable residents who are unable to leave their homes for medical reasons are being urged to contact Cornwall Council and Volunteer Cornwall if they need help getting food supplies, prescriptions or social support during the lockdown.

The ‘shielded’ group are individuals who have been identified by the NHS as Clinically Extremely Vulnerable because of their risk of getting seriously ill if they contract COVID-19.

There are a number of specific health conditions that meet this criteria, which can be found in the Government’s goverment shielding guidance.

Most of these individuals will have been identified from a national database and will have been sent a letter by Government. Cornwall’s GP practices, the Royal Cornwall Hospital Trust, Derriford and other specialist hospitals looking after Cornwall residents have also reviewed their own patient lists to identify whether there are other people who meet the shielding criteria but have not received a national letter yet.

Anyone who believes they should be on this list but have still has not received a letter is asked to contact their GP or consultant as soon as possible.

The shielding letter sent from Government gives clear instructions on how to request support if residents need it.

All those receiving the letter should register by going to www.gov.uk/coronavirus-extremely-vulnerable or by calling 0800 0288327, the Government’s dedicated helpline, to confirm receipt of the shielding letter and discuss any help needed.

So far there are 1,705 people in Cornwall who have registered and requested support.

The Council has set up a multi-agency team from across council services, NHS Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group, the voluntary sector and food providers to co-ordinate food, medical and social support to shielded individuals in need.

A call centre with dedicated shielding number (0300 1234 334  or covid19@cornwall.gov.uk) is up and running with more than 150 calls received to date.

Since the Shielding programme began last month over 2,500 food parcels have been delivered to vulnerable residents.

Most of these standard food packages have been sent directly to individuals by the Government working with Brakes Wholesalers, but the Council and Volunteer Cornwall provided 234 emergency packages to those who contacted its Shielding support line at the start of the programme when Government deliveries were being set up.

The Council is still offering an emergency food parcel delivery for shielded residents in need who may be having problems receiving weekly food parcels from the Government.

The authority is also helping those with specific dietary requirements, either through vegetarian food parcels or through referrals to Volunteer Cornwall whose volunteers can help buy food to meet individual needs.

Anyone who is shielded and requested the Government’s weekly food parcels but are not receiving them should check their details are registered correctly on the government website and contact the Council on 0300 123334 or by emailing covid19@cornwall.gov.uk if they need emergency food deliveries.

If residents’ circumstances change, for example if they need additional support or if they do not need food parcels anymore, individuals should update their details on the Government website, including their address and state that they need support. Changes to details may take up to a week to be activated and the Council can provide emergency food deliveries in the meantime.

For residents who are not shielded but may still have difficulties getting food shopping, please contact Volunteer Cornwall on 01872 266988 or email requestforhelp@volunteercornwall.org.uk.

Volunteer Cornwall has over 3,000 volunteers in place to provide people with the support they need. It is collaborating with the newly developed NHS Volunteers to further strengthen its support network.

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