Help and advice on coronavirus and where to find support

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Coronavirus advice: temporary or shared accommodation

This page contains advice about how to protect yourself from coronavirus if you are living in a shared or temporary accommodation

This information is being regularly updated. Last update 24 March 2020

See for more information about the coronavirus
See the NHS website for health information about the coronavirus

If you need to speak to someone about your support from Porchlight you can call our free helpline on 0800 567 7699

What is Coronavirus?

Coronavirus (also known as COVID-19) is a virus that affects your lungs and airways. Most people who have the virus will not die, but people can become seriously ill and develop difficulty breathing, especially those with underlying health conditions.

How do we stop it spreading?

Coronavirus is more contagious than other viruses. This is why the government is telling all of us to stay at home. These rules apply to everyone, even people who feel healthy or are not at risk. This is what we all must do to stop the virus spreading:

  • Do not leave your accommodation other than for: food, essential medicine, one form of exercise per day, work – only if it is absolutely essential.
    If you do need to leave your accommodation stay at least 2 metres away from other people and wash your hands as soon as you get in.
  • Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap. If there is no soap tell your accommodation manager immediately.
  • Don’t touch your face with unwashed hands.
  • Do not have visitors to your room. Instead you should try to speak to friends and family through video calls or telephone calls.
  • Don’t share cigarettes or drink from the same cups, mugs, bottles or cans.

If you think you have coronavirus

The symptoms of coronavirus are:

  • A high temperature – if your chest or back feels hot to touch
  • A new continuous cough

If you have these symptoms it is important you stay at home. Do not go to the GP, pharmacy or hospital. Speak to your accommodation manager about how you can get food or medical supplies delivered.

You can use the NHS 111 coronavirus service or call them on 111 to see what you should do if you have these symptoms.