Woman with an arm around elderly woman

On the 31st May, the government updated its advice for people shielding in England and Wales, informing those vulnerable from coronavirus that they can now leave their homes and enjoy the outdoors if they wish.

Since lockdown was initiated to stop the rapid transmission of the infection, around two and a half million people in the UK were advised to stay at home and restrict all contact with anyone outside their immediate households.

The result has been millions of individuals identified as clinically extremely vulnerable being completely socially isolated since the lockdown began.

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Many of these individuals are also a key demographic for retailers in the mobility sector, with almost half being over the age of 70.

At the end of May, however, the government published updated guidance for those shielding, highlighting a slight easing in England.

Stating that “COVID-19 disease levels are substantially lower now than when shielding was first introduced,” the government guidance says people who are shielding should continue to take precautions but are allowed to leave their home once a day if they wish.

Those who do choose to leave must maintain strict social distancing but can now spend time outdoors with members of their own household or, if they live alone, time outdoors with one person from another household.

“Ideally, this should be the same person each time,” recommends the government

The guidance maintains that those deemed to be clinically extremely vulnerable should continue to refrain from entering other buildings, households, or enclosed spaces, as well as avoiding any gatherings of multiple people.

The guidance adds: “If you do go out, you should take extra care to minimise contact with others by keeping two metres apart.”

In Wales, the advice differs slightly, with individuals who are shielding informed they can take unlimited exercise outside and meet people from another household if they wish.

Despite the easements, the government says it is currently advising people to continue shielding until the 30 June 2020 and is regularly monitoring its position, with the next review set to take place on the week commencing 15th June – the same week the vast majority of retail shops can reopen.

The government’s new stance on shielding may help provide an added boost in demand for mobility aids as people who have been isolating for the past 12 weeks seek more outdoors pursuits.

https://i1.wp.com/thiis.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/Dementia-patient-carer.jpg?fit=1000%2C585&ssl=1https://i1.wp.com/thiis.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/02/Dementia-patient-carer.jpg?resize=150%2C150&ssl=1Calvin BarnettCoronavirus NewsCOVID-19 Sector NewsCOVID-19 Trade NewsGovernment & Local AuthoritiesNewsroomRetailer NewsSector NewsSupplier NewsTrade Newscoronavirus,demographic,England,mobility equipment,policy,retail shops,self-isolation,shielding,social distancing,WalesOn the 31st May, the government updated its advice for people shielding in England and Wales, informing those vulnerable from coronavirus that they can now leave their homes and enjoy the outdoors if they wish.Since lockdown was initiated to stop the rapid transmission of the infection, around two and...News, views & products for mobility, access and independent living professionals