Registering as a vulnerable person who is shielding


Anyone who has been contacted by their GP or the NHS with a letter that states “IMPORTANT ADVICE TO KEEP YOU SAFE FROM CORONAVIRUS” and told they need to stay in for 12 weeks, is entitled to Government Coronavirus support.

This is because they are classed as a clinically extremely vulnerable person and should be Shielding.

Shielding means:

  • not leaving your home.
  • not attending any gatherings including events friends and families in private spaces such as at their homes, at weddings or at religious services.
  • strictly avoid contact with anyone who is displaying symptoms  - high temperature and/or new and continuous cough - of Coronavirus (COVID-19). These symptoms include.

The Government is currently advising people to Shield until the end of June and is regularly monitoring this position

Read the Government’s advice on Shielding and protecting people who are clinically extremely vulnerable from COVID-19.

Register online 

National assistance is available and people can register for support on the Government’s website.

Register online.

This will ensure they get the support they need and help such as food parcels, prescriptions and essential supplies including for their basic care needs.

People can register themselves, or on behalf of someone else such as a friend, relative or neighbour.  If you are shielding at a friend or relative’s home, please register yourself from that address.

When registering, people will be asked for their NHS number, which can be found on any prescription or letter from NHS, but they can still register if they do not have it.

Register online.

Register by Phone.

People can also register by phone on 0800 028 8327 if they don’t have Internet access.

In addition, if people contact Sefton Council’s Contact Centre on 0345 140 0845, advisers are providing callers with advice on how to get Government-led National Assistance if they are shielding and helping them complete the online form if required.

There is also local support in place for those people who are self-isolating who have not received an NHS letter but still require help and support.

The Sefton Council form is available here.

If you need help completing the form, please ring Sefton Council’s Contact Centre on 0345 140 0845 where staff will be happy to support you through the form.

Sefton Council is working closely with the voluntary sector to ensure a co-ordinated approach and the right support is put in place.

It is important that people remember they should:

  • Only seek help from people they know and trust – e.g. family, trusted neighbours and friends, or reputable charities, local advice agencies and established faith organisations.
  • Only give cash to someone you know and trust and for a specific purpose which you have agreed with them.
  • Never give their bank card and PIN number to anybody.
  • Never give personal health or care details to anyone unless they are from the NHS or the Council and have a need to know.

The Government recognises that people’s circumstances may change over time, people can therefore register for support any time during COVID19.

Food Parcels

If you have already registered for support and received food parcels but they have stopped being delivered, you should contact the national support service on 0800 028 8327 or visit  to ensure you are still registered for essential support.

If you have registered for support and received food parcels but no longer need them, please contact 0800 0288327 or visit to let them know. 

If you have had a food parcel delivery and it is not needed, please contact Sefton Councils Contact Centre on 0345 140 0845 and we will arrange for it to be picked up and delivered to a local food bank.

Priority Supermarket slots

To receive a priority supermarket slot, people who are shielding neeed register on the website at once they have received their NHS letter, or use the phone line available.

When signing up, they must request essential food supplies in order for their data to be passed onto supermarkets. Once registered for priority access with supermarkets, individuals will not be removed from supermarket lists if they subsequently de-register for food boxes. 

However, each supermarket manages their own home delivery system and priority access with supermarkets does not necessarily guarantee a regular frequency of delivery.






Last Updated on 04 May 2020

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