Support for Clinically Extremely Vulnerable People

Protecting people more at risk from Covid-19

Some people are at higher risk of severe illness from Covid-19 and are classed as Clinically Extremely Vulnerable (CEV). Separate guidance, support and assistance is available in Newcastle for anyone in this category.

 You can view the guidance and CEV definition in full here.

The guidance only applies to CEV people – other people living in their households should follow the general advice and regulations.

From 31 December 2020 Newcastle will be in the Tier 4 (Stay at Home) level of restrictions and there is additional guidance relating to this specific Tier. 

Who is in the CEV group?

The CEV group and guidance was formerly known as Shielding and helps protect people most at risk from Covid-19.

A full list is available on the Government website, but includes:

  • Solid organ transplant recipients
  • People with specific cancers
  • People who have had bone marrow or stem cell transplants
  • People with severe respiratory conditions including asthma and COPD
  • People with rare diseases that increase the risk of infections
  • People on immunosuppression therapies
  • Adults of dialysis or with chronic kidney disease
  • Women who are pregnant with significant heart disease
  • Older people whose GP or Hospital Clinician have confirmed they are CEV


You are strongly advised to work from home because the risk of exposure to the virus in your area may be significantly higher. If you cannot work from home, then you should not attend work.

You may want to speak to your employer about taking on an alternative role or change your working patterns temporarily to enable you to work from home where possible.

If you cannot make alternative arrangements, your employer may be able to furlough you under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, which has been extended until the end of April 2021. You should have a conversation with your employer about whether this is possible.

As you are being advised not to attend work, you may be eligible for Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) or Employment Support Allowance (ESA). The formal shielding letter you receive will act as evidence for your employer and the Department of Work and Pensions that you are advised to shield and may be eligible for SSP or ESA.

Members of the household who are not clinically extremely vulnerable should continue to attend work if they are unable to work from home.


As our knowledge of COVID-19 has grown, we now know that very few children and young people are at highest risk of severe illness due to the virus. Doctors have therefore been reviewing all children and young people who were initially identified as clinically extremely vulnerable to confirm whether they are still thought to be at highest risk.

If you have already discussed this with your child’s doctors and they have confirmed your child is still considered clinically extremely vulnerable, your child should follow shielding advice and should not attend school, because the risk of exposure to the virus in your area may currently be very high.

Your school or college will make appropriate arrangements for you to be able to continue your education at home.

Children and young people in the household who are not clinically extremely vulnerable should continue to attend school. Children and young people whose parents or carers are clinically extremely vulnerable should also continue to go to school.


You can go outside, but try to keep all contact with others outside of your household to a minimum, and avoid busy areas.

You are advised to stay at home as much as possible.

You can still remain in your support bubble, but you cannot meet with friends and family you do not live with unless they are part of your support bubble. This is part of the wider regulations in place in your area.

Try to stay 2 metres away from other people within your household, especially if they display symptoms of the virus or have been advised to self-isolate.


You are advised to stay at home as much as possible and not to travel unless essential.


You are advised not to go to the shops. Use online shopping if you can, or ask others to collect and deliver shopping for you (friends and family, or NHS Volunteer Responders).

You can register to request access to priority supermarket deliveries, if you do not have someone you can rely on to go shopping for you. If you already have a priority delivery slot with a supermarket, that will continue – you do not need to do anything further. When registering you will be asked for your NHS number. You can find it on any letter the NHS has sent you, or on a prescription.

Registering on the site just gives you priority. It does not mean you’ll definitely get a delivery slot. If you want access to priority supermarket deliveries, you will also need to set up an account with at least one supermarket and book slots yourself.


You are strongly advised not to go to a pharmacy because the risk of exposure to the virus is significantly higher in your area.

In the first instance, you should ask if any friends, family or volunteers can collect medicines for you.

If friends and family are not able to collect your medicines for you, and you and/or the pharmacy are unable to arrange a volunteer, then you will be eligible for free medicines delivery. Please contact your pharmacy to inform them that you are clinically extremely vulnerable and need your medicines delivered, and they will arrange this free of charge.

What support is available?

You should consider using online delivery slots for food shopping or ask friends and family to help deliver shopping or collect medicines for you. You can access priority supermarket delivery slots on the National Shielding Support Service

NHS Volunteer Responders can also help with shopping and medicine delivery as well as giving you a friendly call to check on your health and wellbeing. Call 080 196 3646 between 8am and 8pm to arrange support or visit the NHS Volunteer Responder website. 

In Newcastle our CityLife Line service is on hand to provide support, guidance and assistance.

To help you with what support you may need please complete this online form or call our Helpline 0800 170 7001.

Someone from our dedicated Welfare and Wellbeing Team will call you back within 24 hours to talk you through any concerns you have.

Our Welfare and Wellbeing Team are available from Monday to Friday from 8am to 8pm, and Saturday 8am to 3pm.

Citylife Line - welfare and wellbeing support

You can also request support from the Government website.

A list of services providing support across Newcastle is available on the on Information Now website. 

Is this page useful?
Is this page useful?