What Is Coronavirus?
Coronavirus (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus that has never been encountered before. It was first identified in Wuhan, China.
Most people infected with the COVID-19 virus will show symptoms such as:
- A high temperature (fever)
- Continuous Cough
People with underlying medical conditions and older people are at risk to develop a more serious illness such as pneumonia. Antibiotics and antiviral drugs that we have against flu will not work. Recovery depends on the strength of the immune system.
In response to the recent Coronavirus outbreak, the government has released official guidelines on its website.
As a result of the outbreak, many businesses in Blackheath such as pubs, restaurants and venues are closed and events and activities have been postponed or cancelled.
It is of utmost importance to avoid any non-essential travel to protect yourself and others. Please wash your hands more often, with hot water and for at least 20 seconds, especially if you have been outside, and avoid touching your face.
You can find in the links at the top useful resources that we have curated in these difficult times with official advice and guidance.
It’s a good idea to be ready in case you are ill. Most people who get COVID-19 will have mild symptoms and will recover at home with no problems, but a few of us will need to be hospitalised. It’s always wise to hope for the best, but plan for the worst.
If you do get sick, be ready. Have a little bag packed with essentials – phone chargers, list of
key contacts, toiletries, clean undies. Have a key with a neighbour, and if you live alone, make sure someone knows you are ill, and check in with them each day. They must not come into your house, but you can wave from the window or phone.
Make sure you have made arrangements for your children and pets. Leave a key with someone you trust, and have a standby person to care for your pets. Introduce your dog to a dog walker beforehand, just in case you need them.
Don’t panic buy. There is no need, and it creates problems in the supply chain. Sensible things to have in are rice, lentils, stock cubes and tinned food, but please don’t buy more than you need. These keep for a long time. Flour and yeast also keep, but don’t buy too much. Yeast goes off quite quickly, even dried in packets. Fortunately you can make
sourdough or soda bread if you have no yeast.
Allow a couple of extra days when ordering prescriptions. Be patient with surgeries and pharmacists.
Don’t overstock medication – it’s not necessary.
Don’t worry. Most people will be fine after all this.
COVID-19: UK Government Action
The chancellor has released several measures to support businesses due to the disruption caused by the Coronavirus. You can find more information on the official gov.uk website.
Employees affected can as well find some advice and support here.
The Chancellor Rishi Sunak unveiled the 20th of March a statement on coronavirus, you can find it here.
Help Your Community
There is a Facebook Group and WhatsApp group for the community of Blackheath where you can get daily updates and provide support for those in need. You may be isolated right now but remember that you’re not alone. Come and say hi and help your community.
You can as well join the Blackheath, SE3 Facebook group where you can get local updates.
Blackheath COVID-19 Mutual Aid
Blackheath Mutual Aid offers neighbourhood support to people who need to be isolated.
We’ll fetch your shopping, we’ll go to the pharmacist for you, we’ll run essential errands so you can stay at home in safety. We’ll deliver to your doorstep, we won’t come in. We’ll take your payment safely when we deliver, not before. We’ll also offer you a listening ear when the isolation gets too much.
We’ll walk your dog for you if it is not aggressive. We’ve got our own leads so with a bit of organisation you don’t have to touch the same things. Make sure you introduce your dog gradually – not many dogs will just go off with a stranger first time they meet. Arrange to meet at safe social distance on the heath, or preferably in an enclosed garden, but always
keep 2m away from each other.
The best way to support your community and your NHS is not to pass on infection. Stay safe. Keep social distance, at least two metres. Wash your hands regularly – as a doctor said yesterday, ‘It’s basic. It’s our first line of defence.’ If you are vulnerable, stay inside and use us if you need help.
We are your community. We’re not here to give you medical or financial advice, though we can signpost you to services if that’s what you need. We’re just your neighbours. We have a list of people who live in your street who have offered to help.
If you need a neighbour, call or text us on 07572 873327 (9am – 6pm) or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please Visit Us Again
We will keep updating this page with more information and provide you with tools to help the community and stay on top of the latest events regarding the coronavirus epidemic.