Advice and Information for Patients: Coronavirus
Advice and information for patients requesting letter or Doctor’s notes
We are currently receiving high volumes of requests for doctors letters or ‘sick notes’ in relation to the current coronavirus outbreak. We understand that this is a new and confusing area for all, and we have therefore written this information leaflet to help to provide you and your employer with some guidance.
1. I have symptoms of coronavirus and have been self-isolating for 7 days
You can self-certify for the first 7 days as usual. You therefore do not need a sick note, or a letter from your GP.
2. I have symptoms of coronavirus and have been unwell for MORE than 7 days
If this is the case, you should visit the 111 website to download a sick note here: https://111.nhs.uk/isolation-note
3. I don’t have symptoms, but someone in my household does and I am therefore self-isolating for two weeks as per government advice
You should use this link to download a ‘self isolation certificate’ which you can give to your employer. https://111.nhs.uk/isolation-note This is not something your GP is able to provide.
4. I’ve received a letter from the government advising me I am in the very high risk shielding group
This acts as a sick note. You can give a copy to your employer with no further action required from your GP. You can register for additional help if you require on the 111 website, here: https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus-extremely-vulnerable
5. I’m at risk, but have not received a letter advising me to shield
As above, some patients have been identified as being very high risk and have already received a letter from the NHS. They should follow the shielding advice discussed in the communication. NHS digital are currently working to identify a small group of additional patients who should also follow this advice, and to provide us with urgent guidance on this.
Until we receive this information, we are unable to issue letters regarding potential high risk patients. Please do not contact your GP for a letter, but do continue to follow government guidance, self-isolate and wash your hands.
Your employer is also responsible for putting in place arrangements for home/remote working where possible. You should discuss this directly with them, as they may be able to authorise absence based on the current government advice. Further advice on self-isolating advice can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19- guidance-on-social-distancing-and-for-vulnerable-people/
6. I’m in a very high risk group, but someone I live with is a keyworker and I need a letter so they can shield with me.
The government advice is that members of your household do not need to shield with you. There’s further information on how to protect yourself in this instance here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-on-shielding-and-protecting-extremely-vulnerable-persons-from-covid-19/guidance-on-shielding-and-protecting-extremely-vulnerable-persons-from-covid-19
As per the current Public Health England and UK government guidelines, your employee will be advised to self-isolate if they show symptoms or have been in contact with someone showing symptoms of infectious diseases such as COVID-19. Medical certificates for this will be provided by 111. Your employee can still self-certify for the first 7 days of sickness as per current law.
We strongly ask that employers exhibit discretion when requesting medical evidence for a period of absence due to COVID-19. Our GP’s have a responsibility to prioritise the clinical assessment and management of their patients during this challenging period, and we thank you for helping us with this.
For any other non – coronavirus related ‘sick note or ’med3’ requests please use the ‘econsult’ online service or email the surgery at [email protected] ,please allow 3 working days for your request to be actioned.