COVID 19

My husband is 67 and has CHF and after today is taking the decision to shield himself from everyone for 12 weeks by staying st home.I know he will really struggle mentally if I move out for this time as I still work and we have bills to pay etc,so I am considering isolating with him to keep him sane but just wonder where I would stand with my employer.We live in U.K and I work for a well known chemist but would they expect me to take it unpaid?-is the government offering help in a situation like this?


3 Comments

Sick pay if you choose to self isolate

by Selwyn - 2020-03-17 15:03:50

You have no statuatory rights .

You may wish to see:

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/analysis-and-features/coronavirus-workers-rights-sick-pay-self-isolation-a9373196.html

The Government may change these rules, however I wonder how much this will cost?

Ask your employer for advice

by Gemita - 2020-03-17 15:22:02

Dear Sylvia,

I do understand your concern.  I wonder if your employer would consider allowing you to work from home in some capacity.  All employers are now going to have to be more flexible.  We are all supposed to be in this "together".  I would speak to them about admin work (if you have a computer) or something that you could do from home.  Perhaps you could gently approach the subject, saying that you are very concerned for your husband's mental and physical well being and that you need to watch over him for a few months.  I do not believe the government would offer paid help unless your husband needed care, then you might qualify for a social security benefit.  You could try speaking to your citizens advice bureau or pop along to your social security office for guidance. 

On age alone, your husband would not be at the highest risk but the CHF is a serious condition which will need to be managed carefully in the coming months to make sure he stays well.  I would hate the idea of leaving him on his own.  He would just dwell on his condition and isolation and that just wouldn't be to his benefit.  Yes vulnerable people should avoid crowds but in my opinion they should not be isolated.  My hubby is 81 with some serious health problems (although now well controlled).  He is a very happy outgoing Italian and although we are avoiding crowds and socialising, he is still going out occasionally for a walk or to collect our prescriptions, or to do a little shopping.  I would have to tie him down to stop this.  While I accept it is important to be extra careful with hygiene, avoid crowds and close contact with others in an attempt to stay virus free, to expect all those over 70 to self isolate for months at a time would, in my opinion, be going too far especially if they have no serious chronic health problems. Isolation for many can lead to major depressive illness and reduced immune function in any event.  They would then be more vulnerable to illness.

I do hope you will find a way through your dilemma and good luck to you both

Employer

by AgentX86 - 2020-03-17 16:24:12

Gemita, once again, has very good advice.  This is all in a state of flux and politicians are using the crisis ("never let a goo crisis go to waste") to push whatever agenda they have. The best option is to assume that no one is going to rescue you.  You have to do what you can for yourself.  Your employer (if they have half a brain) values their employees and will do whatever they can to keep them, short of commiting (figurative) suicide themselves.

My employer sent those of us who could work from home, home last Friday with our laptops and whatever other equipment we needed (no lab equipment was supposed to leave).  If we needed to come in to do work that couldn't be done at home, fine.  The idea was to increase the "social distance" between those who couldn't  work from home.  Monday morning rolls around and we're told the buildings are on lock-down.  No one is to enter - work from home, period.  If, because of what you do, this is impossible, I guess you get a vacation. ;-)  Seriously, everyone I've contacted for information has answered immediately.  With Skype, we've had meetings just like normal times (I'm separated by the rest of my department by 700 miles anyway).

The rumor mill has it that someone in the building turned up with a positive test.  No one knows who, what group he work in, or if he's even an employee.  That information would be useful but it seems HIPPA laws mean more than pandemic control.  Interesting that the same doesn't apply to STDs (except for HIV, amazingly).

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