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Covid-19: support centre

Our Covid-19 support centre provides details about the support available to you, latest news and guidance.

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How we're supporting members Find out why you should join us

What you need to know

In this section you can find out more about covid-19, the symptoms, how to order a test and when to isolate.

What is covid-19 (coronavirus)?

Covid-19 is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus illness that can affect your lungs and airways. It’s caused by a virus called coronavirus.

Coronavirus (COVID‑19) is spreading fast. 1 in 3 people who have the virus have no symptoms, so you could be spreading it without knowing it.

It is still possible to catch and spread COVID-19, even if you are fully vaccinated.

Remember: ‘Hands. Face. Space. Fresh Air’

  • hands – wash your hands regularly with soap and water or use hand sanitiser regularly throughout the day
  • face – wear a face covering when it's hard to stay away from other people - particularly indoors or in crowded places
  • space – stay 2 metres apart from people you do not live with where possible, or 1 metre with extra precautions in place (such as wearing face coverings)
  • fresh air - you are much safer outdoors as fresh air blows away COVID-19 particles - open doors and windows to let in fresh air if meeting people inside

Read the latest government guidance on how to stay safe and help prevent the spread.

What are the symptoms?

Covid-19 can cause a wide range of symptoms; however, these are the three main symptoms recognised by the NHS:

  • a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
  • a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
  • a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you've noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal

Approximately 1 in 3 people who have coronavirus have no symptoms and could be spreading it without realising it.

Additional symptoms that people may experience are:

  • fatigue
  • muscle aches & all over body aches
  • headache
  • nasal congestion
  • shortness of breath
  • loss of appetite
  • sore throat
  • running nose
  • diarrhoea
  • nausea
  • vomiting

What to do if you have symptoms

  • Take a lateral flow test to check if you may have Covid-19
  • Stay at home and do not have visitors (self-isolate) until you get your test result – only leave your home to have a test. Check if people you live with need to self-isolate
  • You should check with the NHS when to end your isolation which may vary across the UK and may take into account your vaccination status, whether you're ill or are a contact of someone who has tested positive, and which strain of the virus you've tested for. This guidance may change over time so it's important you review the medical advice in operation at the time.

If you need medical advice

Get help at:

Call 111 if you cannot get help online. 

When to self-isolate?

About self-isolation

Self-isolation is when you do not leave your home because you have or might have coronavirus (COVID-19). This helps stop the virus spreading to other people.

While it's no longer a legal requirement to self-isolate, it is recommended to isolate if:

Guidance on isolation may change over time, including what to do when arriving into the UK, or travelling abroad. We'd advise you to check the foreign office guidance for travel to get the most up to date information.

How long to isolate for

The current guidance is to try to remain home and avoid contact with other people for 5 days, and meeting those at the highest risk for 10 days. This starts from the day you test positive (or the day you started to feel unwell).

You should be able to return to work and normal activities after 5 days, but you should remain home if you feel unwell or unfit to return to work, have a high temperature or have other symptoms like a persistent cough or sneezing which may indicate you are still infectious. We would recommend taking Covid-19 lateral flow tests which can be obtain from your workplace.

You can find more information on the NHS guidance page.

How we're supporting our members

News

We keep members up to date through our regular communications, including all the latest changes and support we've been providing through the pandemic.
 
  View our covid-19 updates

Health & safety

Keeping you healthy and safe at work is a top priority and never more important as we navigate our way through the COVID-19 pandemic. 

We carry out joint health & safety inspections and have supported special covid-19 risk assessments too. 

We've created an online learning suite for our reps to help them in undertaking these assessments. 

If there are aspects of your workplace environment that concern you, or if you are worried for your safety, please call our helpline on 0118 934 1808. We have a team of officers ready, willing, and able to advise and support you. We continue to have regular meetings with employers to ensure safety remains top priority.

Visit our health & safety rep training

Support

We keep members up to date through our regular communications, but if you have an urgent issue, please call our helpline on 0118 934 1808. We have a team of officers ready, willing, and able to advise you.

We've also produced some guidance on homeworking.

Lloyds Banking Group has published a Covid19 response playbook for branches which includes guidance on testing and self-isolation.

Read the statement published by the Financial Conduct Authority on support for frontline bank workers (published 28/01/2021)

External sources of support

Read our covid-19 updates Review our guidance

Long Covid & absences

For some people, coronavirus (COVID-19) can cause symptoms that last weeks or months after the infection has gone. This is sometimes called post-COVID-19 syndrome or "long COVID".

Long Covid is an issue of concern for the union movement as ONS data has revealed that 1 in 5 people who’ve tested positively for Covid-19 have had symptoms that have lasted for 5 weeks or longer and that 1 in 10 have had symptoms for 12 weeks or longer. 

  • As many as 800,000 people could have Long Covid
  • We know Long Covid impacts on the lives of working people & want to know more

Long Covid, or post-Covid-19 syndrome is the lasting symptoms that people feel or have after the infection has gone. The lasting symptoms can include:

  • Brain fog or problems with memory or concentration making day-to-day life difficult.
  • Fatigue and exhaustion, which may also be exacerbated by difficulty sleeping
  • Joint and/or muscle pain, or pins and needles and tingling
  • Reduced vision and / or hearing
  • Shortness of breath, chest pain or tightness
  • And many other potential symptoms

You can find more information on the long-term impacts of Covid-19 on the NHS website. We've also got more specific guidance on long covid in our help centre.

Find out about long covid support

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