Guidance on shielding and protecting people who are clinically extremely vulnerable from COVID-19

New guidance has been issued regarding those who are extremely vulnerable to COVID-19.

As the situation evolves across the UK and guidance changes over time it is important to check our Coronavirus (COVID-19) and arthritis page regularly for updates.

Our information has now been updated to provide details on the recent changes to Christmas arrangements and the introduction of further lock-down restrictions across the UK.

Please read the latest COVID-19 advice and guidance for England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

In particular, there is new advice on Shielding and protecting the most vulnerable:

Please check the Government's guidance for 'clinically extremely vulnerable' people, this is the group defined by the government to potentially be the most vulnerable to COVID-19:

We continue to monitor Government announcements from each nation and will provide updates as more information becomes available.


  • frogmorton
    frogmorton Member Posts: 29,389
    edited 22. Dec 2020, 06:24

    I read that those in tier 4 (England) have to actually shield again. Not so anyone else though?

  • Kazza52
    Kazza52 Member Posts: 74

    Hi I live in tier four area and I have just received a text stating that as I am extremely clinically vulnerable and I now have to shield. How long do I need to shield for this time? I know that Essex, South East, East and London are the hotspots for this new strain of Coronavirus and I hope that the more people that take up the vaccine the sooner we can get rid of this nasty virus and have some sort of normality. This Christmas will be like no other but we have to stay safe and follow the rules to protect us and those we care for.

    Stay safe everyone. Best wishes everyone for Christmas and let's hope that 2021 is a turning point for getting rid of Coronavirus for good.🐶


  • silverfoxxxx
    silverfoxxxx Member Posts: 131

    I’m currently in a tier 2 and now waiting for the shielding to start again after Xmas for all, Wales and Scotland have now announced a blanket tier 4 I believe straight after Xmas and Northern Ireland I believe is doing the same, I don’t quite understand how if the rest of the world won’t let us travel out of the country how we seem to be freely moving around within it spreading it around and no mention of lockdown or whatever Boris will call it this time.

  • Brynmor
    Brynmor Member Posts: 1,755

    From the links above which lead to the 4 nations' advice & guidance:

    • Wales: All of Wales is currently in alert level 4.
    • Scotland: From Boxing Day, all of Scotland will have Level 4 restrictions applied (some island exceptions)
    • Northern Ireland: Lockdown restrictions will be in place from midnight on 26 December
    • England: Local tier restrictions are in force with area extensions possible

    Do keep regularly checking the advice for your area and the latest shielding guidance.

    Stay safe, stay well.

  • Kazza52
    Kazza52 Member Posts: 74

    Hi everyone,

    Everyone who was shielding the first time around should receive a text and a letter setting out the shielding this time for areas in tier 4. The shielding takes effect from the 20th December until the 18th January. I am waiting for the letter to arrive so that I can show it to my employers.

    Stay safe everyone

    Karen 🐶