Skip to main content

Need help? Contact us

A national scheme has been launched to provide food and other essentials to those most at risk from coronavirus. If you are in this category of 'shielded' households, you may have received a letter from the NHS telling you that you’re clinically extremely vulnerable, or been contacted by your GP or hospital clinician. If this has not happened, contact your GP or clinician after you register with this service. There is a phone line - 0800 0288327.

Important changes to shielding guidance from 6 July.

Government advice to those who were shielding has changed.

From 6 July, clinically extremely vulnerable people have been able to meet outdoors in groups of up to six people they do not live with, while maintaining social distancing. They have also been able to create a ‘support bubble’ with one other household, following the same rules that apply to the public now.

From 1 August, those who had been shielding can visit shops, places of worship and outdoor spaces.

From this date people who have been shielding have also been able to return to work if they cannot work at home. If you are concerned about returning to work, we recommend you speak to your employer and understand their specific policies around health and safety and workplace attendance, especially in relation to COVID-19.

The government’s support service for those who have been shielding is not currently open for new registrations. If you’ve already registered and have priority access to supermarket deliveries, you’ll keep it.

If you did not register for support, or are self isolating for any reason, and need help you can refer yourself to the NHS Volunteer Responders for assistance. NHS Volunteer Responders can help people avoid busy places by collecting their shopping, medicines and other important items; have regular contact with other people by making regular friendly phone calls; get to medical appointments by giving lifts.

To arrange support for yourself or someone you know call 0808 196 3646 (8am to 8pm seven days a week).

For more information on the latest Government advice for the clinically extremely vulnerable, please visit the government's Get coronavirus support as a clinically extremely vulnerable person web page.

Shielding Timeline

Tunbridge Wells Borough Council

If you need support during this time, please get in contact.

Contact by phone: 01892 526121 (Monday – Friday, 9am - 5pm)

We are working with a range of organisations across Tunbridge Wells who can help those who may be struggling. Local groups are being promoted on Facebook and Twitter so you may find it helpful to search for those operating in your area.

Many parish and town councils are also offering help - please contact your local Parish or Town Council for further details.

Kent Together helpline

A 24 hour helpline has been set up to support vulnerable people in Kent who need urgent help, supplies or medication.

If you are vulnerable and have an urgent need that cannot be met through existing support networks, you can contact the Kent Together helpline at or by calling on 03000 41 92 92.

It is a 24 hour service.

You can also report your concerns about the welfare of someone else.

The helpline is a collaboration between KCC, central Government, District, Borough and local councils, the voluntary and community sector, the NHS, emergency services and other partners to ensure help is at hand for vulnerable people.

Kent County Council

Kent County Council (KCC) looks after health and social care and they are working hard to deliver services. Their biggest priority is for vulnerable users of their services and to ensure no one is left isolated and we’re working closely with them to ensure this aim is met.

Find out what KCC are doing.