As of 00:01 this Thursday (5th November), the country will once again be put into a nationwide lockdown, in a bid to slow the spread of COVID-19. These measures, currently set to continue for four weeks until 2nd December, will be some of the strictest we have seen since the first full lockdown. But there will be differences, especially if you have any medical appointments booked during the coming month.
Medical services open during lockdown
While many medical services, including dentists and opticians, closed for routine examinations during the first lockdown, these services will remain open over the coming weeks, as long as they have taken steps to become COVID safe.
As such, medical services that will remain open during the second lockdown include:
Mental health services
Appointments for scans, ultrasounds and other medical/health services
Flu vaccination clinics
Pregnancy and birth during lockdown
Can birth partners attend scans, antenatal appointments and the birth? During the first lockdown, birth partners were unable to attend scans or appointments, and could not even support their pregnant partner during labour until the very final stages.
However, depending on the rules in your hospital, partners may be able to attend scans, antenatal appointments and the birth during this second lockdown.
Your birth partner must be someone you live with or a person within your support bubble, and they will be required to wear a mask at all times.
It’s important to consult your midwife or local maternity team to check the guidelines in your area.
Exercising during lockdown
Sports and leisure facilities, including gyms, swimming pools, fitness studios and tennis courts will be closing during lockdown. But exercising and getting out into nature is important for your mental health right now so you can (and you should) take regular exercise.
A significant change during lockdown this time around is the ability to meet one other person outside. This means you can go for a walk or run with a friend, meaning you can gain both fitness and connection benefits – vital for your mental wellbeing.
And children under the age of five are exempt, meaning you can meet your friend with a baby and/or toddler for some much-needed support and fresh air.
Remember, you can only meet in a public setting, not a private garden.
⚠️ For more advice and information on local services during lockdown, visit gov.uk/coronavirus
Last updated: 04-11-20
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