Updated guidance for those with possible coronavirus

13 March 2020

The government has moved to the ‘delay’ phase of its COVID-19 strategy, and with it comes new guidance on what to do if you have a suspected case. The full version of the advice is available on the government website.


For most people, coronavirus will be a mild infection. The most common symptoms are a new continuous cough and a high temperature.


If you have symptoms, no matter how mild, the advice is as follows:


  • Do not leave your home for seven days from when your symptoms started
  • Ask others for help (such as ensuring access to food and medication) to make sure you can successfully stay at home, such as your employer, friends and family
  • Stay at least two metres (around three steps) away from other people in your home where possible
  • Sleep alone, if possible
  • Regularly wash your hands for 20 seconds, each time using soap and water
  • Stay away from vulnerable individuals, such as the elderly or those with underlying health conditions
  • After seven days, if you feel better and no longer have a high temperature, you can return to your normal routine
  • Coughs may persist for several weeks in some people despite the infection having cleared; a persistent cough alone does not mean you must continue to self-isolate beyond seven days


You do not need to call NHS 111 to go into self-isolation if you are exhibiting these symptoms. If you symptoms worsen during isolation or are no better after seven days, contact NHS 111 online. If you have no internet access, please call NHS 111. In an emergency, please dial 999.


For more information, please see the government website.