Why is this in the UK Defence Journal? Well, my day job in the NHS involves being around patients with Coronavirus and I cannot stress enough how important the advice is in helping to delay this as long as possible.

I’m publishing this here to make sure as many people as possible see the guidance.

NHS advice is essentially:

  • if you have symptoms of coronavirus infection (COVID-19), however mild, do not leave your home for 7 days from when your symptoms started
  • this action will help protect others in your community while you are infectious
  • plan ahead and ask others for help to ensure you can successfully stay at home
  • ask your employer, friends and family to help you to get the things you need to stay at home
  • stay at least 2 metres (about 3 steps) away from other people in your home whenever possible
  • sleep alone, if possible
  • wash your hands regularly for 20 seconds, each time using soap and water, or use hand sanitiser
  • stay away from vulnerable individuals, such as the elderly and those with underlying health conditions, as much as possible
  • you do not need to call NHS 111 to go into self-isolation. If your symptoms worsen during home isolation or are no better after 7 days, contact NHS 111 online. If you have no internet access, call NHS 111. For a medical emergency dial 999

Stay at home if you have coronavirus symptoms

Stay at home for 7 days if you have either:

  • a high temperature – you feel hot to touch on your chest or back
  • a new, continuous cough – this means you’ve started coughing repeatedly

Do not go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital. You do not need to contact 111 to tell them you’re staying at home. Testing for coronavirus is not needed if you’re staying at home.

Read NHS advice about staying at home.

Only use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service if:

  • you feel you cannot cope with your symptoms at home
  • your condition gets worse
  • your symptoms do not get better after 7 days

General guidance

If you’re visiting a hospital ward or other healthcare facility that has not yet suspended visiting, you’ll really help staff out if you follow the below pointers.

  • Please don’t use the patients toilet, use the hospital’s public toilets instead. Even ignoring the infection control issues, you’re giving the hard worked domestic staff more work.
  • Please don’t sit on the bed, that’s another infection control thing. We’re not having a go.
  • Please, please don’t walk into other patients rooms and remove chairs. Chairs are limited to a certain number per room and you’re risking cross infection.
  • Listen to staff, they’re not trying to annoy you. Sometimes a staff member will ask you to stand outside a room while it’s cleaned or a procedure is being performed. They’re not being difficult, they’re doing their job.

As always, common sense and washing your hands with soap and warm water will do more for you than stockpiling hand gel.

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Many thanks for that set of guidelines, and good luck everyone.




I am mystified that UK guidance is only 7 days quarantine when other countries is 14 days. Seems like the UK knows stuff that other governments/scientists don’t

Robert Blay

Every country is different, and is at different stages if the virus.

Mark B

My understanding is that it is 7 days per family member and the whole family unit stays isolated. So it is 7 days from the last family member beginning to show symptoms.


John Snow reported the U.K. advice as 14 days this evening on Channel 4 7pm News so some divergent info coming out right now.


It’s seven complete days form the day you get symptoms. Everyone else in your house must isolate for 14 days to see if they get symptoms. If they get symptoms they must then isolate for the full 7 days. If you still have a fever you must stay isolated until you no longer have a fever. To be clear this is the present UK advice, it is not the same as present world health organisation advice which state’s governments should be using a 2 weeks from last symptom. I believe this is because the findings of a number of scientific… Read more »


Thanks. Great detailed & well-sourced info. Appreciate the info.


Shows what low regard |HMG has for its people & responsabilities.


UK MOD preparing OP Broadshare in aid of civil power. That’s good but who thought up the unfortunate name?


Hi folks, hope all are well and keeping well for the next few months ahead of us.
Good advice UKDJ many thanks, Brits will come through this point in history as ever! Keep cool and calm.


This is very helpful, this advice can’t be repeated enough. You obviously have an inside track with your NHS involvement but I hope that more special interest forums go briefly off-topic to disseminate such important information as well. Thanks for posting this article.


We’re well behind the curve & still delaying measures until after they’d be most useful. Proper P3 masks do work(not surgeons masks) & eyes need covering too. All NHS staff should be tested daily & all necessary PPE provided BEFORE staff start showing symptoms, when it’s too late!


Hi George. Thanks for all you do keping us informed here. They provide proper protection, provided care is taken to decontaminate when taking them off, wheras surgeons masks don’t stop the virus entering either the eyes or mouth/nose as there’s no airtight seal around them. HMG has been very irresponsable dragging their feet on taking measures to slow & minimise infections, testing & protecting health workers effectively. P3 is the highest rating. P2 & P1 each filter out only c95% & less, so better than nothing but still risking infection. Herd immunity, which I think they’ve dropped thankfully, throws all… Read more »


Very useful info and better than reading some of the rubbish in various politically aligned papers.


How does one communicate to 70 year old parents with underlying health conditions that Paranoia is a good thing when faced with a disease that has about a 1 in 10 chance of killing them if they get it, has a set of symptoms that could look like a common cold, tummy upset, flu or any number of virus and that they will catch if they get inoculated.

It may be time to start enforcing isolation. Because if the British people don’t get over this whole ”it’s no worse than the flu thing” god knows what is going to happen.