In the light of the UK government advice on social distancing during the current phase of the Coronavirus crisis, we have regrettably taken the decision to close the Veranda with immediate effect. We have prepared for this eventuality and will be ensuring that as many of the people who use the Veranda are aware as soon as possible. Please check our website and social media for more information, but we will not be reopening the service until government advice suggests that it is safe to do so.
During this time Age Concern Colchester continues to support people in the local community by keeping people connected through regular phone calls and its advice service.
Much like everyone else the team have pulled together to stay in touch as many people as possible that use the befriending services or the Colchester activity centre – known as the Veranda.
We are also doing our bit to keep you all occupied thorough our published activities and keep following us on social media and website for new things that are being added all the time.
Our advice team are on hand to help people with advice, and whilst we can’t come out to visit you, we are available on the phone and by email. If you know someone who might need support at this time, they can still call 01206 368420 leave a message which we can pick up remotely and then we can call you back.
One of the most important things at this time is keeping people connected, so keep following us and pass on our telepone number to anyone you might need it.
We have gathered information from various trusted sources that reflects the current situation in regards to Corona Virus and the advice given.
National Restrictions: Stay Local
Earliest Time Dates for Unlocking Restrictions
Test and Trace
Where Face Masks must be worn!
- public transport (aeroplanes, trains, trams and buses)
- taxis and private hire vehicles (PHVs)
- transport hubs (airports, rail and tram stations and terminals, maritime ports and terminals, bus and coach stations and terminals)
- shops and supermarkets (places which offer goods or services for retail sale or hire)
- shopping centres (malls and indoor markets)
- auction houses
- premises providing hospitality (bars, pubs, restaurants, cafes), except when seated at a table to eat or drink (see exemptions)
- post offices, banks, building societies, high-street solicitors and accountants, credit unions, short-term loan providers, savings clubs and money service businesses
- estate and lettings agents
- premises providing personal care and beauty treatments (hair salons, barbers, nail salons, massage centres, tattoo and piercing parlours)
- premises providing veterinary services
- visitor attractions and entertainment venues (museums, galleries, cinemas, theatres, concert halls, cultural and heritage sites, aquariums, indoor zoos and visitor farms, bingo halls, amusement arcades, adventure activity centres, indoor sports stadiums, funfairs, theme parks, casinos, skating rinks, bowling alleys, indoor play areas including soft-play areas)
- libraries and public reading rooms
- places of worship
- funeral service providers (funeral homes, crematoria and burial ground chapels)
- community centres, youth centres and social clubs
- exhibition halls and conference centres
- public areas in hotels and hostels
- storage and distribution facilities
Does easing restrictions apply to 70 year olds and over?
Yes. However, the advice for those aged 70 and over continues to be that they should take particular care to minimise contact with others outside their household.
If they do go out, they should be careful to maintain distance from others. They and everyone should continue to comply with any general social distancing restrictions.
We know that those aged 70 and over can be absolutely fit and healthy and it’s not the case that everybody over 70 has an underlying disease.
But unfortunately, we also know that as you get older, there is a higher risk of coronavirus infection resulting in more serious disease. Complications and deaths are more common in the elderly, even those without pre-existing conditions.
Amended Advice From Government 11.05.2020DS20_6917-BAME-Covid-Advice_final
What to do if you have coronavirus symptoms
Continue to stay at home if you have either:
- high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
- new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
- loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you’ve noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal
Most people with coronavirus have at least one of these symptoms.
To protect others, do not go to places like a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital. Stay at home.
Use the 111 online coronavirus service to find out what to do.Use the 111 coronavirus serviceInformation:
Only call 111 if you cannot get help online.
What to do if you need medical help for another reason
If you need medical help not related to coronavirus, do not go to places like a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital.
- For health information and advice, use the NHS website or check your GP surgery website.
- For urgent medical help, use the NHS 111 online service. Only call 111 if you’re unable to get help online.
- For life-threatening emergencies, call 999 for an ambulance.
Read more advice about getting medical help at home.
Advice for people at high risk
If you’re at high risk of getting seriously ill from coronavirus, there are extra things you should do to avoid catching it.
- not leaving your home – you should not go out to do shopping, visit friends or family, or attend any gatherings
- avoiding close contact with other people in your home as much as possible
Who is at high risk?
You may be at high risk from coronavirus if you:
- have had an organ transplant
- are having certain types of cancer treatment
- have blood or bone marrow cancer, such as leukaemia
- have a severe lung condition, such as cystic fibrosis or severe asthma
- have a condition that makes you much more likely to get infections
- are taking medicine that weakens your immune system
- are pregnant and have a serious heart condition
If you’re at high risk, you will be contacted by the NHS by Sunday 29 March 2020. Do not contact your GP or healthcare team at this stage – wait to be contacted.
Other things you can do to stop the infection spreading
- wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds
- 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 immediately and wash your hands afterwards
- stay 2 metres (3 steps) away from other people, if you need to go outside
- do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean
How coronavirus is spread
Because it’s a new illness, we do not know exactly how coronavirus spreads from person to person.
Similar viruses are spread in cough droplets.
It’s very unlikely it can be spread through things like packages or food.
Useful Websites with up to date Information
World Health Organisation
NHS Corona Virus Overview
BBC UK News Advice for Elderly
Here is a useful website from Colchester Borough Council outlining Support for communities.
Find help on accessing food, information on key community contacts and mental health support services.