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Life under lockdown: your questions answered

Wendy Armitage Lead Advice Line Nurse

Our Advice Line has been receiving a lot of calls about managing chest, heart and stroke conditions while staying home.

Wendy Armitage, our Advice Line Lead Nurse, answers three common questions she’s been asked this week.

Q: How do I get a shielding letter if I haven’t got one yet?

A: The Scottish Government has contacted some people with particular high-risk health conditions to advise them to stay at home and not go out at all for at least 12 weeks. This is called ‘shielding’.

If you think shielding applies to you but you have not been contacted, you can call your GP or hospital doctor to ask them for advice.

If you do not fall into the shielding group but feel that you should, you can still choose to follow the shielding guidance, but you will not be eligible for government support.

Q: Should I still call my GP if I need advice about my chest, heart or stroke condition?

A: Yes! It is really important to keep managing your health condition at home as you usually would and to keep looking out for any changes to your usual symptoms. If you need advice about anything to do with your health condition, you should call your GP or specialist medical team.

Q: Is it safe to go out for shopping and medicines or should I ask for help?

A: If you have a chest, heart or stroke condition, but you are not in the very high-risk shielding group, you should strictly follow the Scottish Government’s advice on social distancing. This includes being allowed to go out for shopping and medicines. However, if you would prefer not to go out, there is lots of support available to help you get the shopping and medicines you need. You can ask family or friends for help, or arrange free help from one of our Kindness Volunteers.

For more answers to common questions, read our handy summary of advice from the Scottish Government on how to continue to manage your health condition while you’re staying at home.

The Scottish Government is continuing to update guidance on who is most at risk of coronavirus and it is important to stay up to date with this guidance. For more information go to the Scottish Government website.

Our Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland Advice Line is here for you. If you’d like free, confidential advice and information, you can call us on 0808 801 0899, email adviceline@chss.org.uk or text NURSE to 66777.