We are receiving information from local authorities and the NHS regarding the COVID-19 virus. Throughout this time we will update our website with information and guidance for people in Leeds.
Reminder of the helpline for people who need vital help in Leeds
Do you need support getting essential supplies, like medicine or foods?
Call the helpline on 0113 378 1877.
If you know someone else in Leeds who could benefit, please share.
Education, Health & Care Plan - legal changes during Covid-19
The Special Educational Needs Statutory Assessment & Planning (SENSAP) team arranged a briefing yesterday to share details of the current, temporary changes to Education, Health & Care Plans (EHCPs) during the Covid-19 pandemic. Here are the presentation slides they shared from the Department for Education for your information.
Very briefly, although there have been some temporary changes to the law regarding how provision set out in an EHCP can be met or altered if they cannot be met exactly, there is still a duty on schools & other education settings & the local authority (Leeds City Council) to endeavour to deliver the provision set out in an EHCP and make reasonable adjustments required to meet the needs of a child or young person.
Ideally, you should have an ongoing conversation with your child or young person's educational setting about how their needs are being met whether they can physically attend their setting or not and what plans can be made to aim to ensure support & provision is in place for them.
If you are worried at all that this is not happening then the first contact would be via the educational setting to start that conversation - the Special Educational Needs & Disabilities Co-Ordinator ideally (SENDCo). If you are struggling to have this conversation you can contact the Special Educational Needs & Disabailities Information Advice & Support Service (SENDIASS) for support in having these discussions - their number is 0113 378 5020.
Website - Sendiass
Or you can contact SENSAP directly on: 0113 3785 256
Or you can contact Sunshine & Smiles via email: firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 07725041601 for more information & signposting.
NHS guidance for treatment & resuscitation for people with a learning disability
Here is a letter from the National Health Service about treatment & resuscitation for people with a learning disability, including people with Down syndrome.
DNACPR and people with Down syndrome.
The Down Syndrome Medical Interest Group
The Down's Syndrome Medical Interest Group have posted an important message on their website about not delaying seeking medical advice.
Please follow this link - DSMIG
Leeds Support & Guidance from NHS Community Healthcare
Now, more than ever, we need to support our communities in the face of this global health
emergency. This is where the collective efforts of our colleagues in the community and voluntary
sector can make a real difference. Together we’re stronger, together we can reduce the impact of
coronavirus on our communities and together we can support those who sadly experience the loss
of loved ones. #TogetherLeeds
This is the first edition of a weekly bulletin we’ll be producing. It concentrates on ensuring we can
use your networks and contacts to share some really key pieces of information from the NHS and
Leeds City Council. Future editions will look at wider health and wellbeing as the lockdown
continues, with a particular focus on those people in the ‘shielding’ cohort who in effect are
housebound for 12 weeks.
We’d welcome your thoughts on future topics, in the meantime please do share these messages
through all available channels.
Hannah Davies (Healthwatch Leeds), Jagdeep Passan (Leeds Involving People), Pip Goff (Forum
Stay home. Protect the NHS. Save lives
Everyone must stay at home to help stop the spread of coronavirus. People should only leave the
house for very limited purposes:
- shopping for basic necessities, e.g. food and medicine, which must be as infrequent as possible
- one form of exercise a day, e.g. a run, walk, or cycle – alone or with members of your household
- any medical need, including to donate blood, avoid or escape risk of injury or harm, or to provide care or to help a vulnerable person
- travelling for work purposes, but only where you cannot work from home
People in the most at risk group, ‘shielded’ or extremely vulnerable, shouldn’t leave the house at all
for 12 weeks.
If you have symptoms of coronavirus don’t go to a GP, pharmacy or hospital. You need to self-
isolate at home and use the NHS 111 service. If your condition doesn’t improve or you can’t cope
with the illness please call NHS 111. For the latest NHS information visit www.nhs.uk/coronavirus
Keep up-to-date with council service changes
Find out how council services are affected and how to get help by visiting
www.leeds.gov.uk/coronavirus. This includes support with food, money or work and emergency
childcare support as well accessing help if you cannot get out.
Support for extremely vulnerable patients – Leeds City Council helpline
A citywide helpline is available matching people with the support. If you need any help to get food or
medication delivered then please call the Leeds City Council helpline on 0113 378 1877. We will do
our best to assist you.
This number will be staffed seven days a week during standard office hours. You may also call and
leave us a voicemail at any time.
Emergency food response
If someone is finding it difficult to access food due to financial constraints or due to self-isolation
they’re eligible for help.
To make a referral on behalf of someone please fill out ‘Referral for Emergency Food Provision
(COVID-19)’ form which is available by emailing email@example.com. Please provide as much
information as possible and return the form to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also contact the Leeds
Welfare Support Team on 0113 376 0330.
Citywide volunteering programme
Our colleagues at Voluntary Action Leeds have set up a COVID-19 community volunteer programme
with Leeds City Council. This offers a range of ways people can help in a coordinated and safe way
during the COVID-19 outbreak. Please encourage people to sign up online, email email@example.com or
call on 0113 297 7920.
Leeds GP practices still open but access has changed
From now on, you’ll notice differences in primary care. For example, your GP surgery will now want
to speak to you on the phone or online. GP practices in the city have moved the majority of their
appointments to telephone or video consultations. Face-to-face appointments are still offered
where absolutely necessary with patients being advised accordingly. In addition, any practices that
previously provided same-day walk-in appointments have suspended this option.
Important update on referrals for anyone registered with a Leeds GP practice
As part of the response to coronavirus (COVID-19), GP practices in Leeds will no longer be referring
people for routine hospital appointments with only urgent referrals being offered.
This means GPs in Leeds can’t refer for the following hospital services, and all waiting lists are now
• Outpatient appointments
• Diagnostic tests for most conditions – GPs will let people know if there are any tests that
still need to be carried out
• Non-urgent sight impairment issues – support will continue to be provided for urgent
Support will continue to be provided for anyone needing help in an emergency such as a life or limb
threatening illness or injury.
Visiting suspended at city’s hospitals
Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust has suspended visiting times across all its hospitals. There are
• the patient is receiving end of life care
• the visitor is a birthing partner accompanying a woman in labour
At Leeds Children’s Hospital, only one parent or appropriate adult can be with their child at any
given time, and currently no other children will be able to visit.
Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust has also suspended visiting times across all its
For those with family outside Leeds, similar restrictions are likely to be in force across hospitals in
Avoid over ordering and stockpiling medicines
We’re urging patients not to over order their repeat prescriptions and to order as you’d normally do.
Please don’t ask for an increased supply of medicines, only order one month at a time, unless you’ve
been advised differently by your healthcare professional.