Shielding: updated advice for clinically vulnerable

Public Health England has updated its shielding advice for the nearly four million people who’ve been categorised as extremely clinically vulnerable.

With nearly all the clinically vulnerable having had their first dose of the vaccine, a letter from the Department of Health & Social Care states that, from 1 April 2021, they are no longer advised to shield. In addition, it states that ‘everyone is advised to continue to work from home where possible, but if you cannot work from home you should now attend your workplace’. It notes that ‘your employer is required to take steps to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace and should be able to explain to you the measures they have put in place to keep you safe at work’ (see HSE website) .

While those shielding may be eligible for the (extended) Coronavirus Job Support Scheme, they will no longer be eligible for SSP or Employment and Support Allowance on the basis of being advised to shield.