Support for people affected by coronavirus (COVID-19)

Last updated: 19 January 2020

Find out what to do if you're affected by coronavirus in Scotland.

You can find daily updates about coronavirus on gov.scot.

Lockdown extended until at least the middle of February

Scotland is in lockdown because of the faster spreading variant of the virus. Find out more about the lockdown and stay at home guidance on gov.scot.

Barra and Vatersay will move into lockdown from 00:01 on Wednesday 20 January 2021 following a sharp increase in infection rates.

The rest of Comhairle nan Eilean Siar will remain in Protection Level 3 along with Shetland and Orkney.

Schools and nurseries

Schools are only open to in-person learning for children of key workers and vulnerable children until at least the middle of February 2021.

All other children and young people will have remote learning until at least the middle of February 2021.

Read more about the review of restrictions on gov.scot.

Coronavirus symptoms and self-isolating

Check NHS Inform if you:

  • have coronavirus symptoms
  • think you need a test
  • need health advice

You should stay at home if you have:

  • coronavirus symptoms
  • been exposed to the virus, live with someone who has symptoms or been exposed to it
  • been advised to self-isolate as part of Test and Protect or live with someone who has

Looking after yourself and others

Find out what support is available if you've been shielding during coronavirus.

Find information and guidance to help check the coronavirus risk in your workplace on gov.scot.

Find an advocate. An advocate is someone who acts as an independent spokesperson for people who find it hard to speak up for themselves. This can include older people and people with:

  • autism
  • dementia
  • mental health conditions
  • learning disabilities
  • physical disabilities

An independent advocate can support you if you're dealing with care, housing or health services. They can help you:

  • say what you want
  • have a say in what's happening to you
  • get the information you need
  • stand up for your rights

You can phone 0800 111 4000 (textphone: 0800 111 4114) if you need help with things like:

  • food, if you're not able to get the day-to-day food you need
  • medication, if you're not able to pick up the prescriptions you need
  • access to local social work services
  • emotional support
  • contact with local volunteer groups

This can also include other things not on this list.

Opening hours

The helpline is open Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm. It's free to phone.

Who the helpline is for

It's for people who need essential help and cannot get it from family, friends or local groups in your community.

How it works

When you call, you'll be put through to speak to someone at your local council. They'll be able tell you the kind of help you'll be able to get.

Find a list of organisations who can give you help and advice on the Ready Scotland website.

Find out about the extra Coronavirus Carer's Allowance Supplement.

Food, medicine and other supplies

If you cannot afford food, find out if you can get:

Helpline for local support

You can phone 0800 111 4000 (textphone: 0800 111 4114) if you need help with things like:

  • food, if you're not able to get the day-to-day food you need
  • medication, if you're not able to pick up the prescriptions you need
  • access to local social work services
  • emotional support
  • contact with local volunteer groups

This can also include other things not on this list.

Opening hours

The helpline is open Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm. It's free to phone.

Who the helpline is for

It's for people who need essential help and cannot get it from family, friends or local groups in your community.

How it works

When you call, you'll be put through to speak to someone at your local council. They'll be able tell you the kind of help you'll be able to get.

Mental wellbeing

  • NHS Inform - Scotland's national health information service. Provides information on how to look after your mental wellbeing
  • Samaritans - phone: 116 123 (24 hours a day 365 days a year). Samaritans provides phone and email support for anyone who's feeling low, struggling to cope or at risk of suicide
  • Scottish Association for Mental Health (SAMH) - Scotland's national mental health charity. Provides information, links and resources about how to protect your mental health
  • Young Scot - Scotland's national youth information and citizenship charity for 11-26 year olds. Provides information and links about how to look after your mental health
  • see me Scotland - Scotland's national campaign to stop the stigma of mental ill health. Provides links to resources and support organisations
  • Breathing Space - phone: 0800 83 85 87 (Monday to Thursday, 6pm to 2am and Friday 6pm-Monday 6am), Breathing Space is a free, confidential, helpline for anyone in Scotland over the age of 16 experiencing low mood, depression or anxiety
  • if you're already receiving help from your GP, phone your GP or care team first - or if you're unable to talk to them, call 111

Domestic abuse and child protection

Get advice and support from Rape Crisis Scotland. Phone: 08088 01 03 02 (every day, 6pm to midnight).

Housing, evictions and homelessness

Advice and support if you're homeless or worried about becoming homeless.

Work, unemployment and sick leave

You should only go into work if you cannot work from home. In protection level 4 areas, this is the law.

Read the coronavirus stay at home guidance with information about different workplaces.

Find information and guidance to help check the coronavirus risk in your workplace on gov.scot.

Find out if you can get a crisis grant from the Scottish Welfare Fund.

Business advice and support

Information on rates reliefs and grants to help owners of non-domestic properties, including businesses, during coronavirus.

Births, deaths and family

Children and schools

Find out about free school meals - including during lockdown and school holidays.

You should only use informal childcare if it's essential. For example, a grandparent looking after a grandchild.

Only the child should go into the home of another household.

More about the stay at home guidance and childcare on the Parent Club website.

Travel

By law you can only leave your home if you have a good reason.

More about the stay at home guidance and travel and transport on gov.scot.