We continue to be buoyed by the community response to this crisis and it’s been so heartening to hear and see the #ProudofBucks stories coming in via social media. There are so many examples it’s hard to go into details but I want to say a huge thank you to every single person and organisation taking part in this mammoth community effort.
We have groups like Meals from Marlow and The Risborough Basket providing food supplies and meals to the local community. Groups like Bledlow/Saunderton Parish Council and Stoke Poges Good Neighbourhood Scheme are providing a support network to their local community by keeping in touch with vulnerable residents and delivering food and medicines – and I know there are countless other local groups in our towns and villages doing the same too.
I recommend you keep following the @BucksCouncil Twitter feed for all our heartening#ProudofBucks messages and make sure you post your own examples too. Keep following the Twitter feed too for other important updates from Buckinghamshire Council.
A message to families about going to your GP or to A&E during the coronavirus outbreak
Please remember, A&E services and your GP practice are still open for you and your children during the coronavirus outbreak.
GP surgeries are not allowing patients to directly book face to face appointments at the moment, to help stop the spread of the virus. Surgeries are, however, more than happy to discuss your case over the phone and to offer advice and guidance. In some cases GPs and nurses are doing consultations by video link, using mobile phones. If clinically appropriate, you might be able to attend the surgery for an appointment at an arranged time.
It is really important to stay well at this difficult time, so please contact your doctor if your child is poorly with any symptoms that cause you concern. With so much attention on coronavirus at the moment, we are aware you may be concerned your child has a different illness or may be living with a worrying condition like asthma or diabetes.
This information sheet gives very useful advice on when to use services like GPs, pharmacists, A&E and 999. Please remember – all health staff are still here for you, even if they’re having to do things a little differently, so please don’t be afraid to use them if you’re worried about your own or a child’s health.
What to do if you’re worried about a vulnerable person
There are lots of ways a vulnerable person can receive support from Buckinghamshire Council and other organisations if they need help during this crisis. Information on this, and more, can be found at our online Community Support Hub.
Looking after our mental health
It’s now the third week of lockdown and we’re all beginning to adapt to our new routines and finding new ways to get on with our lives.
However, these changes can have a more noticeable impact on some people, especially those with existing mental health problems such as anxiety or depression, compulsive disorders or claustrophobia. They might be worried about how coronavirus could affect their life. This might feel difficult or stressful, but there are lots of things they can try that could help their wellbeing.
There is plenty of help available if you, or someone you know, is experiencing these feelings. A great place to look for support and advice is the Buckinghamshire Mind website.
There’s also information for young people who are worried about coronavirus and want to know how to cope with changes to their lives.
Coronavirus business grants – beware of scams!
Small businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors can now get coronavirus business grants through Buckinghamshire Council. Most businesses in these industries plus businesses receiving Small Business Rate Relief or Rural Rate Relief qualify to apply for this help. We’ve written to and have emailed businesses in our business rates system with details about how to apply. If you’ve not had this letter or email you can still check your eligibility and apply here.
You should apply to us directly for these grants. We are aware of scammers offering to apply on behalf of businesses. Please do not let them take your money.
Buckinghamshire Business First can help local businesses with more general support, advice and information. Visit the website at bbf.uk.com or email BusinessSupport@bbf.uk.com.
As ever, stay safe, stay well – and stay home,
Leader of Buckinghamshire Council
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