Coronavirus – how you can help yourself and the NHS
COVID-19 is a new illness that can affect your lungs and airways. It's caused by a virus called coronavirus. This update provides you with information on what you can do to look after yourself, your family, your community and the NHS. Please share it with your family, friends and community.
1.Keep yourself up-to-date with the latest information
Visit nhs.uk/coronavirus for the latest information, including guidance on what to do if you have symptoms of coronavirus, advice on staying at home and what you can do to avoid catching and spreading the virus.
2. Use the NHS App to order repeat prescriptions
Owned and run by the National Health Service, the NHS App is the simple and secure way to access a range of NHS services on your smartphone or tablet. Right now you can help the NHS by downloading the app and using it to order repeat prescriptions – it’s easy to do.
If you are not registered for this please register at Upwell Health Centre (not the pharmacy) or download the NHS app from your mobile phone’s app store.
Welle Pharmacy is closing between 12 midday and 2pm during the crisis to allow the pharmacy to be cleaned and to allow the staff to re-stock and catch up on dispensing your prescriptions. This means our hours are 8am-9am for vulnerable patients, 9am - 12 midday and 2pm until 6.30pm, all Monday to Friday.
3. Let your GP practice help you safely
Routine non-urgent services in the NHS could well come under pressure as a result of the coronavirus, and so the NHS is preparing a number of practical solutions to effectively respond to this outbreak.
If you have an appointment booked at your GP practice, or if you book one online, then they may call you to make sure that you see the right person in the right place for your illness. Your GP practice may encourage you to make use of more telephone and online appointments. Each practice will come up with slightly different arrangements depending on local needs and circumstances.
This is not something to be concerned about, but is being done as a precaution to help protect patients, staff and the public. You can help by following the advice of your GP practice. You must call Upwell Health Centre before going t the surgery.
4. Visit your hospital’s website if you have an appointment or want to visit someone
Our hospitals are also making changes to how they care for people, this includes having more appointments over the phone and by using video calling, as well as changing how and when people can visit patients. These changes are being made to protect patients, staff and the public.
Visit your hospital’s website if you have questions about your appointments, procedures or visiting the hospital. Alternatively, the James Paget University Hospital and the Queen Elizabeth Hospital King’s Lynn have both set-up dedicated phone lines for people to call:
The number for the Queen Elizabeth Hospital phone line is 01553 214545.
5. Use the online 111 coronavirus service
It is really important that people use the online 111 coronavirus service if they can – people should only call 111 if they cannot get help online.
People should use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service if:
they feel they cannot cope with their symptoms at home
their condition gets worse
their symptoms do not get better after 7 days
6. Keep active and well
If you're stuck at home because of coronavirus, or your normal activity has been cancelled, it's still important to stay as active as you can. Even a small amount of activity will have a positive impact on your physical and mental health, and there's plenty you can do at home – visit Active Norfolk and One Life Suffolk for some ideas to keep you moving.
It's important to take care of your mind as well as your body. There are lots of tips and advice on the Every Mind Matters website about things you can do to help you keep on top of your mental wellbeing and cope with how you may feel while staying at home. Make sure you get further support if you feel you need it.
The Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust will also be updating their website every Wednesday at midday with new information, resources and materials. They're active on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter (#NSFTjoinin) too.
7.Look after each other
The most immediate form of help you can provide to your community during this time is to look out for vulnerable neighbours. If you want to support a neighbour who is self-isolating, you can use one of these postcards to tell them that you're available. Information about helping others and staying safe if someone offers you help can be found on the Norfolk County Council website.
8. Car Parking
Car parks have remained open throughout the duration of the Covid-19 crisis with the exception of the Cliff Top car park in Hunstanton. In response to the changing guidance, this has now reopened (please see section on ‘coastal guidance.’) Our measures and guidance around car park use are:
All car parks, where possible, have social distancing markings in place around the pay and display machines.
While a regular cleaning regime is in place, the council is encouraging people to download the parking app in advance of their journey to avoid contact with the machine. This can be downloaded here: https://secure.mipermit.com/parkingoperations/Register/PayAndStayRegister.aspx
If people do choose to pay at the machine, they are advised to cover their fingers or to use a blunt object such as a pen to press buttons.
As more workers return to the workplace over the coming weeks, the priority car parking for key town centre workers is being phased out. Signage offering the free parking on the Austin Fields East, and upper deck Vancouver Quarter (Sainsburys), in King's Lynn and Central Car Park in Hunstanton will be removed on Sunday, with charges coming back in with immediate effect on Monday 18 May. A phased approach to enforcement will take place in these car parks to ensure that those workers who have been parking for free have a chance to get their permits renewed or to see the message that charges now apply.
We want to thank all those key workers for the amazing work they have done to keep people in West Norfolk served over the crucial first few weeks of this pandemic.
Anyone who wishes to extend or query their parking permit should contact:
The free parking permit that was announced by Government for NHS workers is still in operation. 477 such permits are in use across Norfolk (excluding Norwich). This scheme will remain in place until the Government revokes it.
As travel restrictions are being lifted, we would ask people to please be reminded that parking restrictions do remain in place.
9. Coastal Guidance
With the changes to the government guidance, our priority is supporting people to act sensibly and responsibly whilst following the guidance. This includes helping people to stay safe whilst accessing the coast, which they are now able to do.
We have brought in the following measures and guidance:
The Cliff Top car park in Hunstanton has now reopened to allow those who are making use of the coast to park safely. More information about how we are making our car parks safe to use can be found in the ‘car parking’ section of this update.
Signage will be in place around the resort reminding visitors to follow social distancing guidance, keeping 2 metres apart where possible, and also to only meet with one person who is not a member of their household.
Regular hand washing/sanitising is being recommended, along with the wearing of face coverings where appropriate.
Public toilets are open, but people are advised that maintaining social distancing in public toilets is virtually impossible. People may wish to take this risk into account when making their decision to travel.
Members of the food team were out visiting premises along the coast on Friday, in advance of the weekend, to engage, explain and encourage businesses to comply with legislation and government guidelines. Businesses were provided with some handouts to help them comply and there will be subsequent visits over the weekend to check for compliance.
The Government has issued guidance on safe travel, which includes a checklist of planning a journey and what to take. The council is encouraging visitors to follow this advice
With the wide open spaces at the coast, we are confident that people will be able to social distance and enjoy their use of the outside.
10. Council Meetings
Councils meetings begin again next week virtually. Meetings will take place on Zoom and will be live streamed via YouTube to enable the public to watch.
The first meeting will be the council's Cabinet Meeting on 20 May 2020 at 3pm. This will be followed by the Planning Committee which will also meet virtually on Monday 1 June 2020 and which will be broadcast to the public via the council's You Tube channel. To view the meeting visit https://democracy.west-norfolk.gov.uk/mgLocationDetails.aspx?RID=19 or simply go to You Tube and view live stream https://www.youtube.com/user/WestNorfolkBC.
We have now paid out over £35m in grants to more than 3,000 businesses.
This covers the two grant funding schemes, the Small Business Grant Fund and the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund, both of which are administered by the borough council.
A discretionary fund has been set up to accommodate certain small businesses previously outside the scope of the business grant funds scheme. Further guidance for local authorities will be sent out shortly and we will provide an update in due course.
Complaints about bonfires are more than double what they were at this time last year, and noise and loud music nuisance complaints are nearly three times as high as they were 12 months ago.
We are asking people to be considerate and respectful to their neighbours and think twice about the impact certain activities might have on others whilst we are all staying home more than usual.
13. Play Areas
Play areas and outdoor equipment (parkour & outdoor gyms) remain closed in line with the new government guidance. However, multi-use games areas are now open to use with members of the same household, or one other person while staying 2 metres apart.
14. Recycling Centres
Norfolk County Council opened eight recycling centres on Monday 11th May - including the King’s Lynn recycling centre - with social distancing and restrictions in place. People are encouraged to only make a journey to the recycling centre if their waste or recycling cannot safely be stored at home. And, anyone with Covid-19 symptoms, or anyone who has been in contact with someone with symptoms, should not visit a recycling centre under any circumstances. Further details can be found here: https://www.norfolk.gov.uk/rubbish-recycling-and-planning/rubbish-and-recycling/rubbish-and-recycling-coronavirus-update The County Council has not opened other recycling centres apart from those named at present.
15. Second Homes and Tourism
The new guidance has reiterated that the use of second homes or staying overnight in accommodation that is not where you live is still not allowed.
Until further guidance is received, many retail and leisure premises will remain closed, including the chalets in Hunstanton. No entertainment has been booked for the Green in Hunstanton.
King’s Lynn & West Norfolk
Coach Services - https://www.coachservicesltd.com/category/news/
Mega Bus - https://uk.megabus.com/service-alerts
National Express - https://www.nationalexpress.com/en/help/live-service-updates
West Norfolk Community Transport - https://www.gtt-online.co.uk/news/2020/03/coronavirus-update/