Coronavirus (COVID-19) advice

How to get help

Updated 12 May 2021

Shielding and wellbeing

We continue to work with the Scottish Government, the NHS and other partners, including community groups and volunteers, to ensure that vulnerable people can get the extra help they need during the pandemic.

The offer of assistance falls into two categories:

  • for people who have been sent a letter from the Chief Medical Officer identifying them as someone who may need help under their ‘shielding’ exercise.
  • for other people, who do not receive this letter, but who have issues that mean they also need particular assistance.

If you fall into either of these categories please see the relevant section below.

Wellbeing helpline

The Scottish Government National Assistance Helpline 0800 111 4000 and our Community Wellbeing Helpline 0303 123 1009 are available for individuals living in South Lanarkshire who are self-isolating/vulnerable and whose usual support network is no longer available. However, please note that all calls will be answered by the community wellbeing helpline.

The helpline is available 8.45am to 4.45pm Monday to Thursday and 8.45am to 4.15pm on Friday for South Lanarkshire residents who have been advised to stay at home for medical reasons and have no one else to help them. This could be because:

  • you have received a letter from the Scottish Government Chief Medical Officer
  • you are over 70 years old
  • you have a long-term health condition including a learning disability
  • you are pregnant
  • you have a weakened immune system and receive the flu jab for specific medical reasons
  • you have tested positive for COVID-19, been asked to self-isolate due to being in close contact with someone who has tested positive or have received a notification from the Protect Scotland app

If you are in one of these groups, or otherwise have been advised to self-isolate but have no support, or if you are worried about someone else who may need help, you can call the Community Wellbeing helpline.

Possible assistance includes access to food, help collecting prescription medicines, Accessing hearing aids, baby food, pet food and sanitary provision items. We may also be able to simply check that you, or someone you are worried about are okay, or arrange for telephone befrienders to make regular contact.

Shielding scheme

If you are in the shielding category, a range of supermarkets can provide food boxes. Please check with your local supermarket for availability and more information. In addition, some supermarkets operate a priority online shopping service. If you, your child or someone you care for is on the shielding list and you haven’t registered for a priority slot, you can sign up now. The supermarkets that offer this service are Asda, Tesco, Morrison’s, Sainsbury’s, Iceland and Waitrose.

The Scottish Government have created a FACTS information poster which gives advice on how to stay safe during the COVID-19 pandemic, this includes translations and accessible formats.

If you have not already done so, please think about joining the free text messaging service for people at highest risk from coronavirus. To join, send a text from your mobile phone with your Community Health Index (CHI) number to 07860 064525. Your CHI number is the 10-digit number at the top of your shielding letter. You only need the number itself and, you do not need to text any other information. 

Please also download the new Protect Scotland app to help us stop coronavirus from spreading again.

Scottish Welfare Fund

Before making a call please consider if your enquiry may be better directed towards the  Scottish Welfare Fund, which is available to help people who are on benefits or low income and are having difficulty because of an exceptional situation. For more information and how to apply, see our Crisis grants page.

If you are experiencing financial difficulties, then you may also want to visit our Benefits and money advice page.

If you are self-isolating and your income has been reduced, you may be eligible for a Self Isolation Support Grant. Information on the criteria and application process can be found on the Self-Isolating Support Grant page.

Access to free sanitary provision

If you need sanitary products please complete our online form and they will be delivered directly to your home. You only need to complete one form for all members of your household requiring products.

You can also visit your local library for a pack of items, details on libraries that are currently open can be found on the South Lanarkshire Leisure and Culture website.

Other shopping and befriending services