We would advise patients with IBD to visit the Crohns and Colitis UK website at www.crohnsandcolitis.org.uk.
You should also use the CCUK decision tree on their website.
The British Society of Gastroenterology has the following top 10 tips for everyone with IBD:
- We will do everything we can to keep you safe and well during the COVID-19 pandemic - Note that hospitals are undergoing massive reorganisation to prepare to care for those with serious infection
- Don’t stop your medication; preventing disease flares is a priority - We want to keep you out of hospital if possible, but if you are unwell, we will be there for you
- Ensure you have a good supply of medication should you need to self-isolate or shield yourself - Do not take steroids (prednisolone) from your GP without discussing with your local IBD team
- Contact your local IBD team via the phone or email helpline if you are experiencing a flare
- Wash your hands frequently and avoid touching your face; this goes for everyone
- Work from home if possible, avoid non-essential travel & contact with people who are currently unwell
- Quit smoking as this increases the risk and severity of COVID19 infection & avoid NSAIDs (e.g. ibuprofen)
- Government guidelines on self-isolation and social distancing are changing rapidly so please visit gov.uk and www.nhs.uk to keep up to date. (If you are unclear on your level of risk, contact your local IBD helpline for further advice)
- If you develop a cough, fever or flu-like symptoms you should follow the government’s recommendations about self-isolation and household quarantine. If you feel you cannot cope with your symptoms at home, or your condition gets worse, or your symptoms do not get better after 7 days, then use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service. If you do not have internet access, call NHS 111. For a medical emergency dial 999
- Take care of yourself but also be kind and considerate to others in these difficult times