The Coronavirus Hampshire Helpline - Hantshelp4Vulnerable – set up to assist frail and vulnerable local residents with essential shopping, medication collections and befriending, is now reaching out directly to the many thousands of people, designated by the NHS as ‘extremely vulnerable’ - to offer support, should they need it.
While continuing to respond to requests for help, the new automated service is contacting more than 1,200 people each day to ensure the right help, gets to the right people, at the right time.
Graham Allen, Director of Adults’ Health and Care at Hampshire County Council said: “Introducing this new automated system has meant we are able to reach out quickly to the most vulnerable in society. However, we are finding that some of the calls are not being answered, and we think this is because people may be concerned about their authenticity.
“While we want people to be alert to scams – always – we are worried that the very vulnerable may potentially miss out on vital support. So, our message is - if you receive a call from us, please don’t hang up – we’re here to help.”
- What to expect from the automated service:
The call will come from 01962 418072
- A recorded voice message will explain that this is an automated wellbeing call from Hampshire County Council, and will confirm the person’s name
- If the named person confirms they are in need of help, the call will automatically be transferred to one of the specially trained advisors
- If the call is unanswered, a text will be sent from HampshireCC
It is important to note, that neither the HantsHelpforVulnerable automated service, or the person-to-person advisor service will ever ask for national insurance numbers, bank account details, or for any other financial information.
Any vulnerable person residing in the county of Hampshire can contact the helpline for support on 0333 370 4000 with calls charged at local rate. The service is available seven days a week, from 9am to 5pm.
The helpline is part of a wider initiative by the County Council, Hampshire’s district and borough councils, alongside the county’s community and voluntary sector to support vulnerable residents during the Coronavirus pandemic.