Staying safe and well during the coronavirus pandemic

Useful information on prevention, symptoms and testing In order to keep yourself, your family and your community safe and well there are a number of things you can do.

If you develop any symptoms of coronavirus you must immediately self-isolate alongside anybody you live with. If you are currently self-isolating or require any specific advice or support about self-isolation then please visit our self-isolation webpage.

Booking a test

If you develop symptoms of coronavirus you must book a test immediately, either by using the link below or by calling 119. Tests are free but they are ONLY for people who are showing coronavirus symptoms.

If you don’t have coronavirus symptoms then please DO NOT do not book a test, not only could you be taking a test away from somebody who needs it, taking a test is little help to anybody without symptoms.

This is because if you are self-isolating due to being on contact with a positive case, for example, then a negative test result does not mean you can end isolation early.  The virus can take time to develop and so a test early on does not prove that you won’t go on to develop the virus. That means you could still be at risk of spreading the disease to other people so in these instances the best course of action is to self-isolate for the full 14 days, if you develop symptoms during this time you can then book a test.

Check your symptoms

The symptoms of coronavirus are:

  • a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
  • a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
  • anosmia - this is the loss of or a change in the normal sense of smell. It can also affect the sense of taste as the two are closely linked.

If someone in your household starts to have symptoms, then that person must get tested and the rest of the household should self-isolate with them whilst they wait for the results. If you or other members of the household don’t have symptoms, then you should not get a test – only people with symptoms should get tested. The vast majority of people who are tested in-person get their results the very next day. Full guidance on self-isolation is available on

If you are on a low income and have lost income because you have been told to self-isolate then you may be eligible to apply for a self-isolation support payment

We really need your help to stop the spread!

There are three simple actions we must all do to keep on protecting each other:

Wash hands


  • wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds
  • use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
  • wash your hands as soon as you get home


  • do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean

Cover face

Wear a face covering over your nose and mouth in enclosed spaces. New government advice has been issued on when and where people should wear face coverings.

Members of the public should wear face coverings in certain circumstances, such as enclosed spaces where social distancing may not always be possible. Face coverings are required while using public transport in England and are mandatory in shops and supermarkets and in our One Stop Shop, at indoor venues such as museums, galleries, libraries, cinemas and places of worship.

While face coverings do not protect you from contracting coronavirus, it is aimed at protecting people you come into contact with if you are asymptomatic.

Those exempt from wearing face coverings include young children under the age of 11 or those who may have problems breathing while wearing a face covering. More details can be found on the Government Website.

A face covering is made of cloth or other textiles and covers the nose and mouth. You should be able to breathe comfortably through a face covering. You can use also a simple scarf or bandana that ties behind your head or make your own ‘no-sew’ face coverings using the advice available online at


Make space

Stay at least 2 metres apart - or 1 metre with a face covering or other precautions.

Social distancing measures are steps you can take to reduce the social interaction between people. This will help reduce the transmission of coronavirus (COVID-19).

You must not meet with people from other households socially in groups of more than 6. This will apply indoors and outdoors, including in private homes. There will be a limited number of exemptions. COVID-19 Secure venues, such as places of worship, restaurants and hospitality venues, can still host larger numbers in total but groups of up to 6 must not mix or form larger groups. This rule will not apply to individual households or support bubbles of more than 6 who will still be able to gather together. Education and work settings are unaffected, and organised outside team sports will still be able to proceed, as will weddings up to 15 people and funerals up to 30 people. This limit is now enforceable in law. See refreshed guidance on social contact, including the exceptions to the 6 person limit

For those who are over 70, have an underlying health condition or are pregnant the Government is advising you to take social distancing measures as much as you can, and to minimise contact with others outside your household. You might also be interested in the information produced by Doncaster CCG on Shielding and Support.

Please refer to the latest updated guidance from Public Health England:


For more information, the government have published frequently asked questions outlining what you can and can't do.

Public Health England has also created an easy-read guide to self-care during this time available to download in the downloads section.


Download the NHS COVID-19 app today

The NHS COVID-19 App is available to download on the App Store or get it on Google Play.

Protect your loved ones, get the Covid 19 app

Download on the app store Get it on Google Play

The new NHS COVID-19 app, now available to download for free in England and Wales, is the fastest way to see if you're at risk from coronavirus. The faster you know, the quicker you can alert and protect your loved ones and community.

The app has a number of tools to protect you, including contact tracing, local area alerts and venue check-in. It uses proven technology from Apple and Google, designed to protect every user’s privacy. Get help downloading the app.


Information and advice to stay safe and well 

Using public transport

Please follow the latest government advice and only travel on public transport if you need to, you should cycle or walk wherever possible, or plan ahead and avoid busy times and routes on public transport. This will allow you to practise social distancing while you travel. Passengers and staff are being advised to take precautions to try and stop the spread of the infection.

For questions regarding travel in South Yorkshire you can call the Traveline team on 01709 515151 between 8am and 6pm seven days or follow @TSYalerts  on Twitter. 

Advice for carers

Carers (unpaid) are family, neighbours and friends who care for a person/s who could not manage without their vital support.

As the situation with coronavirus evolves, it's important to know what support is available to you as a carer.
Are you new to a caring role? Have your caring duties changed recently? Do you need to talk to someone about your caring role? 
Carer support gives you the opportunity to find out about help available locally and to help make plans for the future.

Please contact Doncaster Carer Reach Out Service in office time (or leave a message outside these times and we will call you back) on 01302986900 or 07713 089 678. You can also email We will utilise social media as an alternative way to communicate via Twitter @CarersDoncaster and Doncaster Carer Reach Out Service Facebook page.

The links below hold vital information to help and assist at this extremely challenging time:

Making Space - Doncaster Carers Reach Out Service

Carers UK website - Coronavirus mental wellbeing

Carers UK website - Coronavirus guidance

Doncaster Council can provide Carer’s Needs Assessments, any carer over 18 years old who are looking person or persons over 18 years old who is disabled, ill or elderly. It is an opportunity to record the impact caring has on your life and what support or services you need. The assessment will consider physical, mental and emotional needs, and whether you are able or willing to carry on caring. Anyone can become a carer, carers can be of any age, from any background. Many carers do not consider themselves to be a carer as they feel its ‘what they do’ e.g. looking after one or both parents, their child who has additional needs (who may now be an adult), best friend or neighbour.

Examples of caring can be made up of a single or combination of the following;

  • Emotional support like listening and talking
  • Household chores like cleaning, cooking, washing, ironing or shopping
  • Medical care such as helping with medicine dosages or delivery
  • Personal care like feeding, getting to the toilet, washing and dressing
  • Physical care ensuring the person can move around their home

A Carers Needs Assessment can be completed with you in your own right even if the person you care for is not in receipt of care and support through Adult Social Care. Or you can have a joint assessment as a carer with the person you care for if they are known.

Please contact Doncaster Adult Social Services and Wellbeing Team us on 01302 737391 between 8.30 am – 5 pm Monday to Friday. The person who takes your call will make contact with the locality team in your area, this team will make contact with you to arrange a time with you complete your Carers Needs Assessment.

Advice for those aged 70 and Over

The advice for those aged 70 and over continues to be that they should take particular care to minimise contact with others outside their household.

If they do go out more frequently, they should be careful to maintain distance from others. They and everyone should continue to comply with any general social distancing restrictions.

We know that those aged 70 and over can be absolutely fit and healthy and it’s not the case that everybody over 70 has a chronic health condition or an underlying disease.

But unfortunately, we also know that as you get older, there is a higher risk of coronavirus having a more serious impact with infection. Complications and deaths are more common in the elderly, even those without pre-existing conditions.

Advice for vulnerable groups shielding

The government guidance for people who were shielding is now advising that you do not need to shield at the moment. 

Please see the latest guidance to shielded people where the government set out what this means for those that were shielding.

Doncaster CCG have also produced some useful information on Shielding and Support 

Community Hub - supporting people who are vulnerable

The Community Hub is a telephone and email support service to help the most vulnerable in our community many of whom are doubly isolated due to the Coronavirus.

Advice if you're worried about someone

If you're worried about someone else, encourage them to use the NHS online coronavirus service or call 111.

For people living with cancer, there is more information on our coronavirus information for people living with cancer page.

Coping with bereavement

Help is available. You can find information on our Coping with bereavement webpage.

Visiting care homes

Please speak with the care home directly to find out their approach to visitors and keeping people safe during the pandemic.


 Return to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) homepage

Last updated: 22 October 2020 10:03:54