People who are shielding are being advised that though they should continue to do so until at least the end of July, they can if they choose, go outdoors to exercise from 18 June while maintaining strict physical distancing.

Those affected will receive letters from the Chief Medical Officer explaining that the decision on outdoor exercise has been taken after careful consideration by clinical advisors. Prevalence of COVID-19 has decreased and the evidence now shows the risk of outdoor infection is very low if people stay two metres apart. The exercise can be a run, wheel, walk or cycle but those shielding should not meet people from other households.

In all other respects, the advice for those who have been advised to shield has not changed as there remains a risk of infection in indoor and crowded places where physical distancing may not be possible. However, the CMO’s letter also sets out that work is underway to develop a new approach which allows people to better understand their individual risk and make choices which are right for them. This will be made available over the summer.

The support currently in place for those who are shielding, in terms of free grocery boxes and priority access to online supermarket delivery slots, will continue throughout this time.

For more details about the updated advice, see

Public Health Scotland has launched a short survey, which runs until June 14, to learn more about people’s experience of shielding. The findings will help to inform the next steps. People who are shielding and their carers are encouraged to take part at…/survey/index