Official health guidance - what you need to know

What is Coronavirus?

Coronavirus (also known as COVID-19) is a new virus. Generally it is less serious in children and people under 60 - if parents and children get it, it's usually very mild. However, it's very contagious and more severe in older people and people who already have health problems so it's important not to risk them becoming infected too.

It's important to keep yourself up to date.

The best place to do this is NHS Inform which has clear information and is updated regularly.

What are the symptoms?

The most common symptoms of the Coronavirus are:

  • a new continuous cough and/or
  • a fever/high temperature and/or
  • loss of taste or smell.

What can I do to protect myself and my family?

Although the Scottish Government has eased lockdown a little, the advice remains to stay close to home as much as possible  to keep safe. It's hard for families, but we all have our part to play.
Each of us staying close to home just now will save lives - they could be our parents, grandparents or the people working to keep us safe. Stay close to home and make sure your children and young people do too.
There's more about what the new guidance says you can do on our Staying at Home page.

Stay at home and work from home

It's hard for everyone but it's to cut down the rise in the disease so that we can cut down the spread of the virus, save the lives of people in our communities and so that health services can assist those who need help most.

Make sure you're all being hygienic - ensure your children know the importance of washing their hands regularly. Soap gets rid of many viruses. There's some good videos for children about washing your hands.

Wash your hands regularly:

  • after going to the toilet
  • before meals
  • when you come in from outside
  • after coughing and sneezing

Also make sure you all use tissues to sneeze or cough into and throw them away afterwards.

What should I do if I think I have the Coronavirus?

If you’ve developed symptoms (however mild) in the last seven days, stay at home for seven days from the start of your symptoms and arrange to be tested. Do not go to your GP, pharmacy or hospital. 

You should remain at home until you get the result of the test, and then follow the advice you will be given based on the result.

Read NHS Inform's  stay at home guidance for households with possible coronavirus infection.

@NHS24 and the 111 phone line is very busy, so

  • use as your first source of information
  • if you have mild symptoms you do not need to call. You need to stay home and get well. Fluids, rest and paracetamol.

Unless your symptoms are severe or get worse, there's no need to phone 111.

How to help your children deal with the Coronavirus

Many of us are feeling anxious about the virus, including our children. It's important to talk to children and reassure them. There's some good advice out there about how to talk to children about the Coronavirus.

Official guidance in easy read formats and different languages

The UK Government has produced information in easy read formats and a variety of different languages.