Devon Councils are ready again to support the most clinically vulnerable throughout the national lockdown
Councils across Devon are working together to support people identified as being ‘clinically extremely vulnerable’ through this second lockdown.
During the first lockdown beginning last March, around 34,000 Devon residents were considered to be ‘clinically extremely vulnerable’ based on their long term health conditions and vulnerability, and they were advised to ‘shield’. Many spent several months with little if any interaction outside of their households.
Councils, local charities and community groups worked hard to ensure that those who needed support, received help – including food deliveries and shopping, and lifts to medical appointments.
Since then, more vulnerable people have been identified.
With the latest lockdown, the ‘clinically extremely vulnerable’ have been written to by government again this week, and councils have put in place a support programme for those that need additional help to comply with new lockdown guidance.
Priority supermarket slots are available to speed up deliveries for people who otherwise would not be able to go to the shops to buy food over the next few weeks, as Government-provided food parcels, given to around 7,000 clinically extremely vulnerable people in Devon last time, do not feature in the national support package this time.
The government letter also asks recipients to let them know if they need any specific additional support in order for them to follow the national lockdown guidance for the duration of the lockdown.
Those without family support networks can contact NHS Volunteer Responders, or any of the community groups set up across Devon offering support to local residents, or District Councils, which can signpost to support to help them over the latest lockdown period.
Details of the support available, described in the Public Health Devon letter, are published on Devon County Council’s website, along with information about financial support that the council has made available via District Council ‘hardship funds’ for people in need of short term help to afford paying for basic household essentials.