31 March 2021
Following the progress of the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme roll out, and active COVID-19 case numbers remaining lower, updated public health guidance for Islanders at higher risk has been published and will be effective from Thursday, 1 April.
Guidance for care home residents and visitors has also been updated to include:
- An increase in the maximum number of named visitors recommended for both vaccinated and unvaccinated residents
- A relaxation of the recommended PCR testing schedule for visitors to unvaccinated residents (moving to weekly PCR testing)
- Inclusion of advice around visors for visitors and/or residents, where masks cannot be tolerated during visits
The Minister for Health and Social Services, Deputy Richard Renouf said: "The majority of Islanders at high risk have now received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and the team are working at pace to complete second doses.
"High risk Islanders include those over the age of 70, those who have been identified as clinically extremely vulnerable and clinically at-risk, as well as residents in care homes. Those who have received their second dose of vaccine will have up to 90% protection against severe illness from COVID-19, but the risk is not entirely eliminated.
"Allowing care home residents to see loved ones is beneficial for their health and wellbeing. As more people are vaccinated the risk will continue to decrease, but for now as areas of the Island reopen, those at higher risk are reminded to please continue following the guidance."
The changes in guidance for adults in the high risk category are focused on indoor activities, outside the home. Previously those in the high risk category were advised to avoid mixing indoors with others, including work places.
Islanders at high risk are now encouraged to make personal and risk-informed decisions on whether to attend their workplace and other indoor activities.
Consideration should be given to medical circumstances, advice from a GP, and vaccine status. Decisions regarding indoor activities such as visiting a restaurant, shopping or using a gym, should also follow this risk-informed approach.
Full guidance for those at higher risk, including advice on what makes activities higher or lower risk can be found on gov.je/shielding.
Care home visitors can seek advice and can book a PCR test by phoning the Coronavirus Helpline on 01534 445566 or 0800 735 5566 (free phone number).