Shielding information for people at higher clinical risk

Support for people at higher clinical risk

The Scottish Government is changing its advice for people who are shielding in the coming month (July). They are also considering pausing the need to shield. Please check their coronavirus website information for the latest updates.

How the current shielding service works

If you’ve been sent letters from the Scottish Government/NHS Scotland because you - or a person you’re caring for - is shielding at home due to higher risk of severe illness from coronavirus, it tells you the steps you need to take to keep yourself safe. It also lets you know about how you can get food and/or medicines if you don’t have any family or friends who can help you, or any other way to get essentials delivered.

How to get help if you need it

We need to be able to check that everyone who's shielding is getting the support they need. It's important that you join the national SMS Shielding Service. You can do this on your mobile phone by sending a text from your mobile phone to 0786 006 4525. The text you send should only include your CHI number. Your CHI number is the ten-digit number shown towards the top of the letters. It is an automated system, so to get the most effective service please do not add extra information.

If you don’t have a mobile, contact the Edinburgh Assistance Centre by calling 0131 200 2388 or email [email protected] You will need your CHI number which is on the letter your received. The telephone line is open Monday - Thursday 8.30 am - 5 pm, Friday 8.30 am - 3.40 pm. If it’s an emergency, the out of hours team will respond on 0131 200 2000.

What happens next?

If you registered using your mobile phone, once the national SMS Shielding Service has got your CHI number, they’ll send you a text to confirm that you’ve joined the service. You’ll be able to order a free weekly basic food package using your mobile phone.

If you don’t have a mobile phone and you’ve registered with Edinburgh Local Assistance Centre, we’ll deliver your first basic food package. After that your basic food package will be automatically delivered every week

Edinburgh food package deliveries are made on Mondays or Tuesdays. Find out when the deliveries are made to your postcode area.

Advice about shielding and answer to common questionsIllustration of person being shielded at home

Read information from the NHS about shielding and get answers to some common questions about coronavirus if you're at higher risk of severe illness.

Don’t need help?

If you do not want support, you should still get in touch to let us know. Call us on 0131 200 2388 or email [email protected]. This will help us focus on those who need support.

If you need other help

You can also call about any other help that you may need and we’ll arrange the help or support you need either through council services or through volunteers or voluntary groups.