Advice for the elderly and their relatives as government announce over-70s self-isolation plans

16 March 2020, 11:34 | Updated: 16 March 2020, 15:53

The Health Secretary has said that over-70s could be asked to self isolate 'within weeks'
The Health Secretary has said that over-70s could be asked to self isolate 'within weeks'. Picture: Getty/ITV

The UK public has been told that the over 70s may be told to self-isolate 'within weeks' over Coronavirus fears.

Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield discussed the potential government plan for all people over the age of 70 being asked to self-isolate on This Morning today, asking Dr Sara for advice for those concerned.

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The doctor first explained the reason behind the proposal, saying: "We know the main way of spreading this is through respiratory droplets, but by isolating more vulnerable people we are limiting that."

Dr Sara assured the public that 'self-isolation' doesn't mean 'social isolation'
The doctors discussed the potential government plan on This Morning today. Picture: ITV

When Phil asked how elderly people would cope for a potential four months in isolation, she reassured the public that there are steps you can take to ensure that your loved one doesn't feel isolated.

She said: "Self isolation doesn't mean social isolation. It doesn't mean you can't go to relatives and give them parcels and say hello. You'd ideally be 2 metres away and not cough on them - and don't go if you feel unwell."

The panel also added that many councils are setting up hotlines for the elderly to call for help with things like food, deliveries, supplies and medicine.

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Their reassuring words come after Health Secretary Matt Hancock said that over-70s will be asked to self-isolate 'within weeks' due to concerns about Coronavirus.

The elderly could be asked to self-isolate 'within weeks'
The elderly could be asked to self-isolate 'within weeks'. Picture: Getty

He told The Andrew Marr Show that growing concerns about Covid-19 meant "the elderly and vulnerable" would be asked to "shield themselves by self-isolating".

And when asked whether they could be asked to do so for four months, he added: "That is in the action plan, yes.

"And we will be setting it out in more detail when that's the right time to do so, because we appreciate it is a very big ask of the elderly and vulnerable, and it's for their own self-protection."

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