Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resources

These resources have been developed by RSPH and our partners to help support the public's health and wellbeing. Also included here are the latest updates specifically for RSPH Members and our national network of Training Centres.

We aim to continuously update this hub with the latest health and wellbeing news and provide current advice and guidance from experts across the spectrum of public health.

Public Health Guidance 

The main symptoms of coronavirus, outlined by the NHS, include:

  • High Temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
  • New and Continuous Cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour OR 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
  • Change in your sense of smell and taste - this means there has been a change in your normal sense of smell and/or taste (also called anosmia).

You should not leave home if either you or someone you live with has any of these symptoms. It's important to remember that you can spread the virus even if you don’t have symptoms (asymptomatic). There's NHS guidance available on self-isolation if you or someone you live with has symptoms.

If you have Covid-19 symptoms you can ask for a test through the NHS website. Anyone can get a test, irrespective of their age.

The Government has launched the NHS Test and Trace service, to help contain and reduce the spread of coronavirus.

Part 1: If you test positive for Covid-19, you will be contacted by the NHS Test and Trace service and asked to share information about who you have been in contact with recently (within 2m distance).

Part 2: If you are contacted by the NHS Test and Trace service because you have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for Covid-19, you must self-isolate for 14 days from your last contact with the person who has tested positive. You will be contacted by the service either by a phone call, email or text. The full guidance on how the Test and Trace service works is available.

There is guidance on the NHS Test and Trace service for various scenarios:

  • Workplaces - how the NHS Test and Trace service could affect employers, businesses and employees, and what support is available 
  • Personal contact - guidance for what steps to take if you have been in contact with someone who isn't from your household, that has tested positive for Covid-19
  • Households - steps for self-isolating when a member of your household may test positive for Covid-19.

If you have Covid-19 symptoms or test positive for Covid-19, you should self-isolate for 10 days from the time symptoms start to show up. 

There is guidance available for parents and carers of school-aged children to help children return to school as safely as possible. The guidance covers what to do if you're shielding or self-isolating, best practice hygiene guidance and what to do if your child shows Covid-19 symptoms. 


Some of the key public health guidance for England is summarised below:

  • Public transport – You must avoid travelling around the UK unless it is for work, education or other legally permitted reason. If you have to travel by public transport then you should wear a mask unless you are exempt
  • Face coverings – Wearing a face covering is required by law on public transport and in shops 
  • Meeting other households and leisure activities - You cannot meet up with anyone indoors unless they’re in your support bubble. There are a few exceptions to this which are outlined here. You can meet up with one other person outside for a walk, run etc.

For a full outline of the updated Covid-19 guidance, you can read the Government FAQs on the coronavirus outbreak and full guidance on support bubbles, including what to do if someone in your support bubble starts to show Covid-19 symptoms.


The key public health guidance for Scotland is below. You can find more detailed public health guidance on Public Health Scotland.

  • Meeting other households - Gatherings outdoors are legally limited to six people (does not include children under 12). There are some settings where more than six people can legally meet, which are outlined here. You can only meet indoors with people who are in your household.
  • Going to work – If it is possible for you to work from home then you should do so. If you have to go into work you should follow these guidelines
  • Face coverings - It is the law to wear a face covering on public transport, in shops and in hospitality venues listed here
  • Leisure activities - There are temporary measures across Scotland which limit the sale of alcohol and the operating hours of hospitality venues. 


The key public health guidance for Wales is below. You can find more detailed public health guidance on Public Health Wales.

  • Meeting other people - You can form a bubble with one other household and meet socially with up to four people indoors (who aren't in your household). Gatherings outside are limited to groups of up to 30 people
  • Going to work – The Welsh Government has advised that people should work from home unless there is a clear business reason for someone to be in a workplace setting
  • Face coverings - Face coverings are mandatory on public transport and in shops, unless you are on the exempt list
  • Leisure activities - Hospitality venues including restaurants and pubs are open for outdoor and indoor service. There is a 10pm curfew for hospitality venues.

Northern Ireland

The key public health guidance for Northern Ireland is below. You can find more detailed public health guidance on Public Health Agency.

  • Meeting other people - You can only meet up socially indoors with your household (this includes extended households). Groups of up to six people from two households can meet outdoors, as long as you maintain social distance
  • Going to work – You should continue to work from home wherever possible and follow these guidelines if you return to a workplace setting
  • Face coverings - Face coverings are mandatory on public transport and in public places.

Across the UK

The NHS has issued some common-sense advice which is applicable for everyone, for what you can do to avoid catching coronavirus - and help stop it spreading:

  • Wash your hands with soap and water as often as you can - for example, whenever you get home or arrive at your place of work - and for at least 20 seconds.
  • If you don't have access to soap and water, use a hand sanitiser gel instead (min. 70% alcohol content)
  • After touching surfaces that may have been touched by other people outside your home (e.g. in a shop or on public transport), DO NOT touch your eyes, nose or mouth - until you have washed your hands properly
  • Whenever you cough or sneeze, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands). And put used tissues in the bin straight away
  • Avoid close contact with people who are unwell
  • To address increases in the number of Covid-19 cases, the Government has introduced 'local lockdowns' in certain areas of the UK. You can find out about localised restrictions across England, Scotland and Wales and how leisure and work activities are affected.

External Resources 

The following organisations provide reliable information and advice on the current coronavirus outbreak (from a UK perspective). A couple of selected international resources, that provide accurate public health information, have also been listed.

UK Organisations

External resources which provide support with mental health and advice for high risk populations can be found here.

International Organisations

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Blogs and Public Health News 

Our blogs include RSPH's official statement on coronavirus and the latest public health advice and guidance from RSPH Trustees and public health experts. Visit our Covid-19 blog and vlog hub for our full Covid-19 blog series.

You can also read our consultation submission to the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee call for evidence on Covid-19 and food supply.

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Video Guides

Our video series, Coronavirus: The Lowdown, has advice from RSPH partners, Trustees and staff on a range of health and wellbeing areas including healthy eating, mental health and hygiene. You can see all of our videos on the RSPH YouTube Channel or visit our Covid-19 blog and vlog hub for more of our Covid-19 video series.

Effective Hand Washing

Dr Lisa Ackerley, RSPH Trustee, shares her steps for effective hand washing.

Getting Better Sleep

James Wilson AKA The Sleep Geek, gives practical tips for sleeping better during the coronavirus outbreak.

Community Spirit

Chris Elmore, Welsh Labour MP for Ogmore and Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Social Media, talks about the importance of Community Spirit.

Tips for Exercise

Jo Curran, a pilates specialist at Future Fit Training, shares her tips on exercises you can do to stay fit, whilst following the public health guidelines.


Tips for Creativity During Lockdown

RSPH Arts & Health Special Interest Group Committee member Dr Ranjita Dhital, University of Reading, explains the benefits of getting creative at home during the Covid-19 pandemic. Visit the Culture, Health & Wellbeing Alliance to access a host of creative resources.


Updates for RSPH Centres and Members

We will keep all RSPH Members and Training Centres up to date with any changes to our services.

Public Health Journal (Editorial and Articles):

Public Health in Practice (Editorial and Articles):


Our Webinars

We will be hosting webinars throughout the coronavirus outbreak which are free to access for RSPH Members.

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