Councillor Liz Fairhurst, Hampshire County Council’s Executive Lead Member for Adult Services and Public Health shared the following advice:
“Being prepared for the festive period is especially important for the elderly and vulnerable and is even more so this Christmas with the increase in COVID cases and concerns over the prevalence of the Omicron variant. Knowing what support is available in advance can make all the difference if you need to step in to support someone.”
Connect to Support Hampshire, the County Council’s one-stop-shop online directory of care and support provides a wide range of practical advice. This includes helpful information on:
- Keeping warm and eating well
- Staying connected with others
- Ensuring your prescriptions are topped up
In addition, make sure those you care for have access to COVID lateral flow tests. Tests can be ordered online or collected from your nearest participating pharmacy.
Councillor Fairhurst added: “Once again this Christmas, we are facing uncertainty and need to do all we can to ensure that those in our lives who may be vulnerable, are supported to stay safe and well – and that includes considerations relating to mental wellbeing – the festive period can often be a time when people experience loneliness or social isolation. We also want to remind people that help is at hand if they are experiencing difficulties due to COVID-19 or because they are self-isolating as a result of the virus.”
The Hampshire Coronavirus Support and Helpline can signpost to information, advice and relevant services that can assist with a range of issues; from where to find help in the community and money worries, to emotional support and practical help. Information about the helpline’s Christmas opening times is available on the County Council’s website.
For advice on mental wellbeing or urgent support, go to Mental Wellbeing Hampshire.
Guidance from the NHS on How to stay well this winter is another useful resource providing information for the over 65s.