Home deliveries of essential groceries to those who are deemed at high risk of becoming seriously ill if they are infected with coronavirus will begin today. 

The Chief Medical Officer has been issuing letters to those in the high risk category this week to provide guidance and information on support and shielding from infection.

Those who received a letter will be able to sign themselves up to the service via text message to start weekly deliveries of essential food items including soup, pasta, rice, fruit, vegetables, tea, coffee and biscuits, as well as toiletries such as shower gel and toilet roll, on Friday.

READ MORE: Coronavirus: High-risk people should stay at home for 12 weeks

Deputy First Minister John Swinney said: “These new services are available to those at the highest risk of severe illness from COVID-19 who do not have support structures around them to help.

"This includes people with specific forms of cancer, severe respiratory conditions, certain rare diseases, recipients of organ transplants, those on immunosuppression therapies and pregnant women with congenital heart disease.

“Many people will have support from friends and family but I would encourage everyone who receives a letter and requires support to sign up to the service immediately - this will ensure you have adequate supplies of food and essential items during these challenging times. 

“It is vitally important that people at highest clinical risk are shielded as much as possible, and our advice alongside this text service will help protect people from the detrimental effects of the virus, including disruption to health and social care and key services.

“Our local services must prioritise those most in need and - by doing so - we will protect them, reduce the burden on the NHS and save lives.

"By continuing to work together, we can all play our part in keeping everyone safe.”

READ MORE: GCU: Over 500 nursing students 'well prepared' to join NHS coronavirus fight

Other measures being put in place for delivery include:

  •  Specialist medicines such as chemotherapy drugs delivered through local health boards
  • Local Resilience partnerships working with Community Pharmacy to scale up deliveries of pharmacy medicines
  • Work with supermarkets to ensure priority delivery slots for people at high clinical risk


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