Coronavirus: Current information and advice
A compilation of current official UK/global advice and publications relating to the worldwide outbreak of COVID-19.
As part of our duty of care to members and others working on the frontline of older people's healthcare, we are sharing advice and guidance about the outbreak of coronavirus.
This information is aimed at healthcare professionals. Members of the public are advised to refer to the information on this page.
NHS and UK Government: General information
Coronavirus (COVID-19): Latest information and advice - Department of Health and Social Care and Public Health England
Updated daily with key information including numbers of cases and deaths.
- NHS 111 coronavirus information and advice
Includes an overview of COVID-19, common questions and an online advice questionnaire.
- Coronavirus (COVID-19) - NHS Inform (Scotland)
- Public Health Wales statement on novel coronavirus (COVID-19)
Updated daily at 3pm.
- COVID-19 (coronavirus) - Public Health Agency (Northern Ireland)
All healthcare settings
- COVID-19: management of exposed staff and patients in health and social care settings - Public Health England
Guidance on the management of staff and patients who have been exposed to COVID-19, including care homes. Features easy-to-read flow charts.
- Recommended PPE for primary, outpatient and community care by setting, NHS and independent sector - NHS, PHE, Academy of Medical Royal Colleges
Downloadable and printable PDF table clarifying PPE requirements for healthcare staff in specific settings and contexts.
- COVID-19: Guidance for health professionals - Gov.uk collection
Current guidance from Public Health England and the Department of Health (England).
- Quality Improvement Zone: COVID-19 - NHS Education for Scotland
In response to the COVID-19 Pandemic, members from cohort 12 of the Scottish Quality Safety Fellowship, with Hazel White from Open Change, have created visuals on 3 key topics which they hope are of benefit to others.
- NICE Critical Care Guidelines (NG159) (COVID-19) - National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE)
The purpose of the NICE guideline (NG159) is to maximise the safety of patients who need critical care during the COVID-19 pandemic, while protecting staff from infection. It will also enable services to make the best use of NHS resources. Includes: frailty, clinical guidelines and end of life care.
- Coronavirus: Specialty guides for patient management - NHS England
Guides for various specific clinical situations including:
- Palliative care in hospital
- Trauma and orthopedics
- Critical care
- Perioperative care of people with fragility fractures
- Non-invasive respiratory support
- COVID-19 rapid guideline: critical care - NICE guideline [NG159]
The purpose of this guideline is to maximise the safety of patients who need critical care during the COVID-19 pandemic, while protecting staff from infection. It will also enable services to make the best use of NHS resources. Includes the Critical care admission algorithm using the Clinical Frailty Scale.
- COVID-19 position statement: Presentations and management of COVID-19 in older people in acute care - SIGN/Health Improvement Scotland
The purpose of this guideline is to provide NHS Scotland with advice on presentations and management of COVID-19 in older patients in acute care. The recommendations are based on available evidence and expert opinion.
- Coronavirus (COVID-19): hospital discharge service requirements - Department of Health and Social Care
This document sets out how all health and care systems and providers will alter their discharging arrangements and provision of community support to enable the discharge of all patients as soon as they are clinically safe to do so.
Community, residential and social care
- Consensus statement: Drug Treatment in Community Settings for COVID19 patients
A consensus statement written by a Task and Finish Group convened by Dr Adrian Hayter, National Clinical Director for Older People and Integrated Person Centred Care, NHS England and NHS Improvement. (Shared with permission of Dr Hayter pending official release by NHS England).
- Visiting arrangements in care homes for the period of national restrictions - Department of Health and Social Care (England)
This guidance sets out measures that can be put in place to provide COVID-secure opportunies for families to meet.
Liverpool City Area Policy Brief: Care Homes and COVID-19: How we can Prepare for Future Outbreaks - Dr Asangaedem Akpan/University of Liverpool
This policy briefing provides a number of recommendations which, if implemented, are intended to improve the lives of older people living in care homes and reduce the impact of any future infectious outbreaks.
- Coronavirus (COVID-19) tests available for adult social care in England - HM Government/CARE
Flow diagram to assist with testing protocol in care homes.
- Pharmacy’s role in primary care network multidisciplinary teams supporting care homes - NHS Confederation
This briefing explores how pharmacy professionals are supporting care homes. It spotlights examples of collaborative working in local areas and provides top tips to support PCNs.
- Coronavirus National Testing Programme: Information sheet for care providers - Department of Health and Social Care (England)
The Department of Health and Social Care launched the next stages in its Adult Social Care Testing Strategy on the 3 July. This document outlines the key testing provision within that strategy for residents and staff in care homes. This testing approach applies in England only.
- Visiting care homes during coronavirus - Department of Health and Social Care (England)
Guidance for making arrangements for limited visits for care homes with the support of their director of public health.
- COVID-19 testing and retesting in care homes - Gov.uk
Guide to COVID-19 testing for care homes, including schedules for retesting, applying for tests, types of test and how to administer them.
- Coronavirus (COVID-19): support for care homes - Department of Health and Social Care, Helen Whately MP
Sets out the support package to keep care homes safe during the coronavirus pandemic.
- Coronavirus (COVID-19): provision of home care - Department of Heath and Social Care
Frequently asked questions from registered providers, social care staff, local authorities and commissioners who support and deliver care to people in their own homes, including supported living settings, in England.
- Coronavirus (COVID-19): clinical and practice guidance for adult care homes - Scottish Government
National clinical and practice guidance (updated 15 May 2020) to support those working in adult care homes in Scotland during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Apply for coronavirus tests for a care home - Gov.uk
Government portal for care homes in England that look after older people or people with dementia for requesting tests for residents or staff.
- COVID-19 Insight: Focus on adult social care - Care Quality Commission (CQC)
This first insight document focuses on adult social care: reviewing data on outbreaks, deaths and availability of PPE, and in particular highlighting the impact of COVID-19 on staff wellbeing and the financial viability of adult social care services.
- COVID-19 response: Primary care and community health support care home residents - NHS England/NHS Improvement
Letter to GP practices and primary care networks, community health providers, regional directors of primary care
and CCG accountable officers, dated 1 May.
- Coronavirus (COVID-19): reuse of medicines in a care home or hospice - Department of Health and Social Care, NHS England, and NHS Improvement
Standard operating procedure on how to run a safe and effective medicines reuse scheme in a care home or hospice during the coronavirus outbreak.
- Novel coronavirus (COVID-19) standard operating procedure: Community health services - NHS England/NHS Improvement
This guidance from NHS England clarifies the expected approach of community health services to the management of patients in the community during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Coronavirus (COVID-19): adult social care action plan - Department of Health and Social Care
How the government will support the adult social care sector in England throughout the coronavirus outbreak.
- COVID-19 rapid guideline: managing symptoms (including at the end of life) in the community [NG163] - NICE
The purpose of this guideline is to provide recommendations for managing COVID‑19 symptoms for patients in the community, including at the end of life. It also includes recommendations about managing medicines for these patients.
- COVID-19 Rapid Guideline: managing suspected or confirmed pneumonia in adults in the community [NG165] - NICE
The purpose of this guideline is to ensure the best treatment for adults with suspected or confirmed pneumonia in the community during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Coronavirus (COVID-19): admission and care of people in care homes - Department of Health and Social Care, Care Quality Commission, Public Health England, and NHS England
This guidance is for care homes and registered providers of accommodation for people who need personal or nursing care. It sets out how to admit and care for residents safely and protect care home staff.
- COVID-19: residential care, supported living and home care guidance - Public Health England
Official PHE advice on residential care, supported living and home care - covers how to maintain delivery of care in the event of an outbreak or widespread transmission of COVID-19, and what to do if care workers or individuals being cared for have symptoms of COVID-19.
- COVID-19: ethical framework for adult social care - Department of Health and Social Care
Guidance on ethical considerations for local authorities and adult social care professionals planning their response to COVID-19.
Coronavirus and older people (Resource series)
This resource series brings together current advice from experts within the BGS relating to older people and the current COVID-19 pandemic.
- BGS statement on the COVID-19 pandemic
The BGS has issued this statement for healthcare professionals on the particular issues that older people face in relation to the virus and the importance of maintaining high-quality patient care.
- COVID-19: Managing the COVID-19 pandemic in care homes
The COVID-19 pandemic raises particular challenges for care home residents, their families and the staff that look after them. This guidance has been developed to help care home staff and NHS staff.
Age and Ageing journal: Free collection of COVID-19 papers
A collection of papers related to the COVID-19 pandemic which have been published in BGS's journal, Age and Ageing, and form an important contribution to the collective understanding of the disease and its effect on older people. New papers will be added as they become available.
- COVID-19 and medicines advice for older people
Older people are particularly at risk from complications as a result of COVID-19 and many are likely to already be taking medication for other conditions.
- Coronavirus: Managing delirium in confirmed and suspected cases - BGS, EDA and RCPsych
This consensus advice has been drawn up by experts from the British Geriatrics Society, European Delirium Association and the Faculty of Old Age Psychiatry at the Royal College of Psychiatrists.
- COVID-19: BGS statement on research for older people during the COVID-19 pandemic
Research is an essential part of the global and UK strategy and response to COVID-19. This is the British Geriatrics Society's statement on research for older people during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- COVID-19: Tools and templates
This resource brings together tools, templates and transferable examples of materials which may be of use across a variety of clinical settings and scenarios during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- COVID-19: End of life care in older people
This page brings together resources and information for any clinician or carer who finds themselves faced with providing care at the end of life during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- COVID-19: Dementia and cognitive impairment
This guidance is applicable to those with dementia and anyone with cognitive impairment resulting from conditions which affect the brain.
- COVID-19: Geriatric basics for non-specialists
A selection of links and resources to help guide healthcare professionals working during the COVID-19 pandemic who may have little experience of geriatric medicine.
- COVID-19: Health and care staff wellbeing
Links, resources and tools to help support personal wellbeing during a particularly challenging time for the health and care workforce.
- Facing a new reality – challenges for acute care of older people (Blog)
BGS blog from Dr Mark Roberts, Consultant in Medicine for Older People and Chair of BGS Northern Ireland, on COVID-19 and implications for acute care of older people.
Please see this page for latest information on vaccination.
Royal Medical Colleges and Chartered Societies
- The RCP and COVID-19 - Royal College of Physicians
Includes RCP guidance, information from RCP on exams and CPD, and signposting to specialty-specific guidance.
- Covid-19 - Royal College of General Practitioners
Advice, FAQs and practical resources for general practice on dealing with the outbreak.
- COVID-19 (coronavirus) - Royal College of Nursing
Includes how to protect yourself, what you should expect from your employer and what to do if you have concerns, as well as general information and advice.
- Intensive Care Medicine Anaesthesia COVID-19 - Royal College of Anaesthetists
Clinical guidance for intensive care and anaesthetics in light of COVID-19.
- Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pharmacist updates and information - Royal Pharmaceutical Society
The latest developments from the NHS and pharmacy bodies, as well as the implications for pharmacists and UK medicines supply. Includes downloadable posters and resources.
- Coronavirus - Chartered Society of Physiotherapy
Information and guidance for physiotherapists about the coronavirus outbreak.
Professional and regulatory bodies
- Coronavirus information and advice - General Medical Council
Guidance for doctors and frequently asked questions from the GMC.
- Coronavirus (Covid-19): Information and advice - Nursing and Midwifery Council
Information on the regulation, the temporary register and other frequently asked questions.
- COVID-19: Information for registrants - Health and Care Professions Council
Signposts to official guidance and regulatory information.
- How we will continue to regulate in light of novel coronavirus (Covid-19) - Statutory regulators of health and care professionals
Joint statement from the GMC, NMC, HCPC and other healthcare professional regulators.
Specialist societies and associations
- COVID-19 and Palliative, End of Life and Bereavement Care in Secondary Care - Association for Palliative Medicine
This guidance, intended for use in secondary care, has been prepared and collated locally by the Northern Care Alliance NHS Group and the Association for Palliative Medicine of Great Britain and Ireland.
- COVID-19: information for the respiratory community - British Thoracic Society
Information, guidance and resources to support the respiratory community during the COVID-19 pandemic. This page is updated as new information becomes available - please check back regularly.
- Malnutrition and COVID-19 - British Dietetic Association
A myth busting-guide to malnutrition and COVID-19 from the British Dietetic Association to support with advice and direction regarding the nutritional care of our most vulnerable.
- Joint statement on Covid-19 - National Voices
A joint statement from people living with mental and physical ill-health or disability, their carers and families, and the organisations that work for them (including the BGS).
- Joint statement on advance care planning - BMA, CQC, RCGP and CPA
DNAR and ACP for frail older people in relation to COVID-19.
Global and international
- EuGMS Task Force on COVID-19 - European Geriatric Medicine Society (EuGMS)
Collation of hot topics, research, webinars and consensus Q&As from Europe and North America.
Strengthening the health system response to COVID-19 - World Health Organization (WHO)
WHO/Europe provides guidance to Member States on strengthening health systems and rapidly reorganizing service delivery to respond to COVID-19 while maintaining core essential services across the continuum of care so that no one is left behind. This overview of policy resources includes overall policy recommendations for a well-aligned health system response, technical guidance and checklists, and planning and monitoring tools.
- Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak - World Health Organization (WHO)
Covers: protect yourself; your questions answered; situation reports; media resources; technical guidance; global research.
- Rolling updates on coronavirus disease (COVID-19) - World Health Organization (WHO)
- Myth busters - World Health Organization (WHO)
Open access articles
- Longer incubation period of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID‐19) in older adults. Ageing Medicine; 202 (https://doi.org/10.1002/agm2.12114).
The aim of this study was to explore any age‐related change in the incubation period of COVID‐19, specifically any difference between older (aged ≥65 years) and younger adults. Based on 136 patients with a travel history to Hubei, the epicenter of COVID‐19, the COVID‐19 incubation period was found to be longer in older adults. This finding has important implications for diagnosis, prevention, and control of COVID‐19.
- UpToDate® Clinical Content Available to All
Open access to UpToDate content for anyone seeking the latest evidence-based information.
- Intensive care: balancing risk and benefit to facilitate informed decisions. BMJ 2018;363:k4135
More efforts are needed to engage with the wider healthcare community and the public about what intensive care can—and can’t—achieve, say Jamie Gross and colleagues.
Rehabilitation and post-COVID care
- COVID-19: Rehabilitation of older people
This page brings together resources and information relating to the rehabilitation of older people as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, either following recovery from the virus or as a consequence of an execerbation of other health issues due to isolation or reduced access to health services.