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Please see our COVID-19 guidance for the latest updates and information.


NHS England has announced that it is identifying a high-risk group of up to 1.5 million patients across England, who are being asked to shield for their own protection and for whom they will provide a degree of enhanced support.

While 900,000 adults and children across England have been identified so far through NHS digital coding, there are some patients at high risk who will not be identified via this route. A BSR working group has been working with the RCP, other societies and the CMO for England to address this by developing a risk stratification guide for rheumatology.

We know that all clinicians are working incredibly hard in very difficult times and that this will be an extra burden for already stretched departments, but we are now asking for your help in identifying these patients and advising them and their GPs of their high-risk status, using this template letter. These patients will include adults, children and young people with rheumatic diseases under our care and on varying levels of immunosuppression.

NHS England has written to all Trusts across England to secure support for this task and we are also asking that resources are made available to you to help with this work.

Coronavirus risk stratification guide

At-risk patient letter template