Saturday 30th May 2020
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Information on coronavirus

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Support is available if you're self isolating

Not everyone that needs to self-isolate will be able to arrange help with essential or urgent supplies through family or friends. If that includes you, find support from local groups and organisations here.

I'm self-isolating and need support

Latest government advice

Please follow the strict measures set by the government to help stop the spread of coronavirus, protect the NHS and save lives.

See latest government advice here

Recent updates

15 April

Coronavirus and ibuprofen
Latest government update suggests that currently there is insufficient evidence to establish a link between use of ibuprofen and susceptibility to contracting coronavirus (COVID-19) or the worsening of its symptoms.
  • See commission on human medicines advice on ibuprofen and coronavirus (COVID-19)

15 April

Driving to work and your car insurance
If you have to drive to your workplace because of the impact of Covid-19, your insurance policy will still be valid. You do not need to contact your insurer to update your documents or extend your cover.
 
If you work in one of the critical sectors listed by the government and you need to use your own car to drive to different locations for work purposes because of the impact of Covid-19, your cover will not be affected. You do not need to contact your insurer to update your documents or extend your cover.

15 April

MOTs due from 30 March 2020
Your car, van or motorcycle’s MOT expiry date will be extended by 6 months if it’s due on or after 30 March 2020 - but you must keep your vehicle safe to drive.

15 April

More domestic abuse resources
We added more guidance from organisations for anyone experiencing domestic abuse, plus tips on supporting someone else experiencing abuse and an online hub space from NSPCC.

14 April

Looking after your mental wellbeing
If you're struggling with your mental health during this crisis, you aren't alone. Our guide includes tips on how to manage your mental wellbeing.

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Changes to our services and priorities

During this Covid-19 outbreak emergency our main priorities are:
  • protecting the most vulnerable people in Luton
  • ensuring  the health and safety of our residents and our staff
In response to the Covid-19 pandemic and government guidance, we're now enacting our contingency plans.
 
See our main core service priorities and changes below.

Luton Council service response to Covid-19

Service specific updates

For changes to bin collections, day care centre closures, updates to Luton's parks and all other service specific updates, click the button below.

Service specific updates

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Government and health advice

COVID-19 is a new illness that can affect your lungs and airways. It's caused by a virus called coronavirus.

The government has urged the public to take further steps to protect themselves and the wider population from the coronavirus, including: 
  • government announces further measures on social distancing
  • shielding and protecting people defined as extremely vulnerable
  • everyone to stay at home unless they need to get essential supplies such as food and medicines
  • all those able to work from home to do so
  • only travelling if absolutely necessary – public transport must only be used for essential travel 
  • many businesses and venues have been told to close to stop the spread of coronavirus

What to do if you have symptoms

Stay at home if you or someone you live with have either:
  • a high temperature
  • a new, continuous cough

How long should you stay at home if I have symptoms?

  • If you have symptoms, however mild, stay at home for seven days.
  • If you live with other people, they should stay at home for 14 days from the day the first person got symptoms.
  • If you live with anyone who is over 70, has a long-term condition, is pregnant or has a weakened immune system try to find somewhere else for them to stay for 14 days.

What we all need to do

  • Wash your hands often (see more below)
  • Use a tissue for coughs
  • Avoid touching your face

Corona symptoms

New coronavirus health checker tool

The NHS is asking people with potential coronavirus symptoms to:
  • complete a new coronavirus status checker
  • answer a short series of questions that will tell the NHS about their experience
This checker will help the NHS coordinate its response and build up additional data on the COVID-19 outbreak.

Shielding advice for high risk groups

The government has shared guidance for shielding for those who face the highest risk of being hospitalised by the virus to stay at home and protect themselves from others.

Social distancing

GOV.UK has published guidance on social distancing for everyone in the UK and protecting older people and vulnerable adult. This applies to everyone in the UK and advises on social distancing measures we should all be taking to reduce social interaction between people in order to reduce the transmission of coronavirus.

Self isolating

 
If you have to stay at home together, try to keep away fromeach other as much as possible.
You can find the latest information and advice about self isolation on the Public Health Matters blog. This will help to protect others in your community while you're infectious.
 
If you're self isolating, do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital.
 
Read further advice about staying at home from:

Government guidance on coronavirus

Handwashing guidance

Washing your hands is still the most important thing we can do to stop the spread of coronavirus. Please follow Public Health England advice to:
  • wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds
  • always wash your hands when you get home or into work
  • use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
  • cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
  • put used tissues in the bin straight away and wash your hands afterwards
  • try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell
For the safest and most thorough handwashing method, watch this NHS video.
 
 

Where to get medical help

You do not need to contact NHS 111 to tell them you’re staying at home. They won't be testing people who are self-isolating with mild symptoms. 
 
Use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service if:
  • you feel you cannot cope with your symptoms at home
  • your condition gets worse
  • your symptoms do not get better after seven days
Only call NHS 111 if you cannot get help online.
 
The latest online health advice from the NHS can be found using the button below. This includes:
  • stay at home advice including how long to stay at home
  • how to avoid catching and spreading coronavirus
  • travel advice
  • treatment for coronavirus

See the NHS website for the most up to date medical advice

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Guidance for attending a COVID-19 funeral

Sadly, many people will lose family members during the coronavirus crisis. We've put together some guidance if you need to attend a funeral.

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How to give help or get help

Give help

A huge thanks to the many people who have responded to our call for volunteers. We're currently working through all the forms and so please accept our apologies if you do not hear from us for a few days – bear with us and we'll be in touch.
 
There will be plenty for us all to do in the coming weeks, so we really do appreciate your interest in becoming a volunteer.

Get help

Our call centre is experiencing a high volume of calls, so please help us to help the most vulnerable in our community.
 
If you're a vulnerable person - aged over 70 and/or with underlying health conditions – and require urgent help, please contact 01582 547659.
 
Support if you're self-isolating
Not everyone that needs to self-isolate will be able to arrange help with essential or urgent supplies through family or friends. If that includes you, find support from local groups and organisations here.
 

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Benefits, money and work

For help and advice on claiming benefits, making a change to your claim and more, please see our benefits help section.
 
The Citizens Advice website has the latest information and advice relating to:
  • going to work
  • if you're off sick or told to stay home because of coronavirus
  • if you're self-employed
  • if you're claiming benefits
  • if you can’t pay your rent

Having difficulty paying your Council Tax?

See the money saving tips page for more help

 

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Schools and educational establishments

Luton schools, colleges and other education settings  have risen to the challenge to support the government’s response to the coronavirus.
 
Click the button below for government guidance to help schools and other educational settings provide advice about coronavirus (COVID-19) for:
  • staff
  • parents and carers
  • pupils and students

Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance for schools and other educational settings

It includes information and links to guidance documents about :
  • educational provision for vulnerable children and children of key workers
  • the closure of educational settings
  • free school meals arrangements
  • the cancellation of GCSEs, AS and A levels
  • travel guidance for educational settings
  • social distancing in education and childcare settings

School closures

From Monday 23 March almost all mainstream education provisions will be open for children of key workers and vulnerable children. Parents should contact their child’s school should they have any queries regarding their eligibility to have their child cared for at school. Please visit the school closure page for regular updates of any closures. ​
The government has published:

Stay at home activities

If you're worried about how to structure your day now that schools are closed, see our guidance with:

  • guidance for parents and carers
  • lots of resources for all kinds of activities - both educational and fun!

See stay at home activities

 

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Advice for businesses

Lots of new information has been announced for businesses on the GOV.UK website, including the closure of many establishments. We’ve also published more localised information specifically for Luton. See these links.
 

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Physical and mental wellbeing when staying at home

Coronavirus and its impact can create worry and stress for many people. While you follow guidelines to stay at home, looking after your family and your physical and mental health is vital.
 
Here are a few resources that might be useful.

Domestic abuse
We know that staying at home may cause an increase in domestic abuse. This is not acceptable, no matter what stresses you're under. If you or anyone you know it as risk, please see our domestic abuse resource page for support available during the coronavirus crisis.

 

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Travel and travellers

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) now advises British people against all non-essential travel worldwide. This advice took effect immediately on 17 March and applies initially for a period of 30 days.

More locally, changes have been made to bus services in Luton, and bus pass rules have been relaxed.

 

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Religious and faith groups

We're speaking regularly with faith groups across the town who have an important role to play in raising awareness of the key messages on hand washing, social distancing and self-isolation in order to prevent further spread of the virus within our communities.
 
We are hosting weekly teleconferences with faith groups to pass on the latest advice and guidance and to support them to get these vital messages disseminated.
 
We've provided information and links aimed at faith groups and are encouraging people to share this information within their congregations and communities.
 

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Inter-generational households

We appreciate that many Luton families live in multi-generational homes, which makes it more challenging when it comes to self-isolation.
 
However, it's absolutely vital that the government advice is followed to slow the spread. The government call this shielding.
 

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Campaign toolkit and translated resources

We've created a campaign toolkit with translated resources to help promote key advice and information about coronavirus including:

  • guidance on how to stay well at home
  • social distancing

Please share these materials with your family and friends particularly those who are unable to access our materials online. You can request printed copies by emailing pressoffice@luton.gov.uk.

 

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Government and general updates

Health

Education

Businesses

Travel

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Coronavirus updates

 
 
 
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