Novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is a new strain of coronavirus first identified in Wuhan, China. Clinical presentation may range from mild-to-moderate illness to pneumonia or severe acute respiratory infection. COVID-19 was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organisation on 12 March 2020. We now have spread of COVID-19 within communities in the UK.
Extensive measures have been implemented across many countries to slow the spread of COVID-19. In the UK the current recommendations are for everyone to stay at home as much as possible and severely restrict their interactions with others outside the household.
Information for the public and health professionals advising patients
Further information for the public on COVID-19 can be found on NHS Inform. NHS Inform includes a link to enable people to obtain a self-isolation note for employment and statutory sick pay purposes.
Guidance for use in Scotland
HPS continues to update its guidance for health protection teams and healthcare practitioners as the situation evolves, as well as providing guidance for non-healthcare settings including schools, places of detention, and separate guidance for social care settings.
Always check this website to ensure that any guidance you are using is the latest version.
Infection prevention and control in healthcare settings
The four UK countries are adopting the COVID-19 guidance for infection prevention and control in healthcare settings. This official guidance was produced jointly by the Department of Health and Social Care, Public Health Wales, Public Health Agency (Northern Ireland), Health Protection Scotland and Public Health England.
This guidance is consistent with the current infection prevention and control advice and guidance that has been issued to and used by NHS Scotland to manage the ongoing response to COVID-19.
Revised PPE guidance
- COVID-19 personal protective equipment (PPE) (PHE guidance)
The posters below maybe used to promote the above guidance:
- Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Posters (A4) (last updated 8 April 2020)
- Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Posters (A3) (last updated 8 April 2020)
- COVID-19 Compendium (last updated 9 April 2020)
The COVID-19 Compendium contains links to current national and international policy, guidance and resources on COVID-19 from key organisations and will be updated daily during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Rapid Review of the literature: Assessing the infection prevention and control measures for the prevention and management of COVID-19 in healthcare settings (last updated 3 April 2020)
This rapid review provides an assessment of the scientific evidence base to determine if the infection prevention and control measures applied in Scotland are suitable for the prevention and management of COVID-19 in healthcare settings. As this is a rapid review, the methodology differs from that of the NIPCM. The evidence will be updated real-time.
- Aerosol Generating Procedures (AGPs) (last updated 11 March 2020)
This National Infection Prevention and Control Manual (NIPCM) literature review informs the recommendations for transmission based precautions required for aerosol generating procedures. The methodology for NIPCM reviews is found within the ‘Development Process’ section of the NIPCM.
Workforce education resources
These infection prevention and control learning resources developed by HPS in partnership with NHS Education for Scotland are for people supporting the NHS services during the UK COVID-19 response in Scotland who may be required to provide clinical care for a variety of patients including some who are either confirmed or possible COVID-19 cases.
Two resources have been developed. Before reading the shortened resource you must ensure that you are already fully aware and be able to put into practice the current Standard infection control precautions (SICPS) and Transmission based precautions (TBPs) detailed in the National Infection Prevention and Control Manual.
Infection prevention and control measures (last updated 5 April 2020)
Infection prevention and control measures – caring for suspected or confirmed COVID-19 patients (last updated 5 April 2020)
- Guidance for Health Protection Teams (HPTs) (last updated 2 April 2020)
- Guidance for primary care (last updated 2 April 2020)
- Guidance for secondary care (last updated 2 April 2020)
- Advice for pharmacies (last updated 2 April)
- Advice for dental teams (last updated 2 April 2020)
- Advice for opticians and optometrists (last updated 2 April 2020)
- Guidance for sampling and laboratory investigations (last updated 26 March 2020)
- Algorithm summarising sampling and laboratory investigations (last updated 26 March 2020)
- COVID-19 packaging of diagnostic samples for onward transportation (last updated 8 March 2020)
- COVID-19 Laboratory testing -frequently asked questions
(last updated 3 April 2020)
- Search criteria for highest risk patients for shielding (last updated 3 April 2020)
- Guidance for non-healthcare settings (last updated 24 March 2020)
- Information and guidance for social or community care and residential settings (last updated 2 April 2020)
- Guidance for first responders and others in close contact with symptomatic people with potential COVID-19 (last updated 24 March 2020)
Turas Learn website has a range of NHS Education for Scotland (NES) educational and induction resources for all health and social care staff and volunteers deployed to support clinical services. Requirements are under constant review and additional resources will be added as required.
A range of other workforce education resources have been developed and we will add a page grouping these together soon.
The latest COVID-19 guidance for all veterinary professionals and all animal keepers can be accessed on the Scotland's Healthy Animals website.