The current national situation is changing frequently and this is impacting on local situations and services.
All children are expected to stay at home if possible (with the exception of keyworkers’ children and some vulnerable children – please check with your school if you are not sure).
Many organisations have been advised to follow public health and government advice on social distancing.
On this page we have collated information related to this situation with a focus on those with SEND and hope it will be helpful for these families, children, young people and those working with them.
Please be reassured that all teams are looking at how best to help support families.
Someone will contact you from one of the usual services you use (eg. School, social care, health, CAMHS) to check how you are doing and if you need any specific help.
For information and updates on keeping safe, and current Council and Central Government advice and resources, visit Camden Council Coronavirus webpage.
The following are links/ resources to external organisations who have prepared information and advice about coronavirus for people with SEND and their parents and carers.
- Carers UK: Guidance for carers
- Mencap - Easy Read guide to coronavirus (downloadable PDF - Adobe Reader required. You can download it here)
- National Autistic Society: guidance and helpline for parents, young people and staff
- Place2Be: Guide to helping parents answer questions from their children and to support family wellbeing
- Public Health England Advice on the coronavirus for places of education: easy-read version (downloadable PDF - Adobe Reader required. You can download it here)
- Young Minds: Talking to your child about coronavirus and 10 tips from their Parents Helpline to support family wellbeing
- Podcast for parents of children with Autism, from The Association for Child and Adolescent Mental Health (ACAMH) on anxiety related to Covid-19
- Council for Disabled Children: extensive list of resources to support health and social care practitioners, children, young people, and families as well as the latest government guidance for professionals working across different settings during the COVID-19 outbreak.
- BBC top tips to tackle anxiety can be found here.
- FACE COVID – How to respond effectively to the corona crisis (thinking therapeutically)
- Looking after yourself, looking after your children and 'Covid 19 – Frequently Asked Questions' can be found on the right of the page.
- Every Mind Matters - Free NHS resources that are useful for mental and physical wellbeing – for ourselves as well as for children and young people.
- Free resources from Makaton
- Challenging Behaviour Foundation
- Online Safety during Covid-19
- NSPCC online safety
Independent Provider of Special Education Advice (IPSEA) update on COVID-19, school closures and SEN provision can be found here.
Please find an open letter to children and young people with SEND, their families and others who support them from Vicky Ford, MP for Children and Families here.
Useful downloads available on the right side of the page under Downloads.
Note: Some of these resources require Adobe Reader to open PDF files. You can download it here for free.
Please note on external links: The Council assumes no responsibility for the content of websites linked through our site. Such links should not be interpreted as endorsement by us of those linked websites.
Activities for children and families here.
You will also find under downloads -
- Supporting eating at home
- Supporting play at home
- Supporting communication at home
- Supporting routines at home
- Supporting toileting at home
- Supporting sensory needs at home
Autism and SEND specific resources / activites incluing general resources can be found on the right of the page under downloads.
Short Breaks Offer to Parents, Direct Payment Coronavirus fact sheet and Letter to Camden CYPDS children Covid-19 can be found on the right of the page under downloads.
Children & Young People in North Central London – important information about how to access appropriate health services
If you are worried about your child, you should access health services in the same way you would normally:
- Refer to NHS online: www.nhs.uk for general information, to check symptoms and the right steps to take
- Use 111 online: https://111.nhs.uk/. You can also call 111 for further advice but please be aware that this service is busy
- If necessary call your GP to discuss your concerns and seek help
- If your concerns related to coronavirus you can also check the NHS symptom checker on www.111.nhs.uk/covid-19
- If you need immediate assistance dial 999 or attend an accident and emergency department
At present, Accident and Emergency services for children are based at North Middlesex Hospital, Royal Free Hampstead and Whittington Hospital.
Hospital is still the safest place for your child if they are seriously ill.
Do not delay calling your GP if you are concerned about your child’s health. If you need immediate assistance, dial 999 or attend A&E.
Access to Health Care
Health services are open as usual, however some services are being delivered differently – for example you may be offered a telephone or video consultation with your GP in the first instance rather than an automatic face to face appointment.
Sources of information and care
- For general online information and to check symptoms refer to NHS online: www.nhs.uk or use 111 online: https://111.nhs.uk/
- If needed call your GP to discuss your concerns and seek help
- You can also call 111 for further advice, this is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week but please be aware that this service is very busy at the moment.
- COVID 19: If your concerns relate to coronavirus you can also check the NHS symptom checker on www.111.nhs.uk/covid-19
What if it is an emergency?
- If you need immediate assistance dial 999 or attend an accident and emergency department
- Accident and Emergency services for children are now based at the Whittington Hospital and the Royal Free Hospital. At present UCLH children and young people’s emergency department is redirecting patients to alternative local hospitals.
I’m concerned about coronavirus
- Coronavirus is unlikely to make your child unwell, but other illnesses may make your child severely unwell.
- There are lots of measures in place to protect you and your child from coronavirus if you need to attend.
- Please do let the medical team know if your child has coronavirus symptoms - a fever or cough. It won’t affect the quality of the care you receive but it will ensure that those looking after you and children around you are sufficiently protected.
Immunisations for young children and baby checks after birth are essential for your child's health and are still being delivered by your GP.
The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health - Advice to Parents can be found under downloads.
Specific advice on autism and coronavirus
- Ambitious about Autism – understanding anxiety and the coronavirus pandemic
- Carol Gray Social Stories™ – pandemics and the coronavirus
- Carol Gray Social Stories™ – learning about the coronavirus
- Priory Group – how to help an autistic child during the coronavirus outbreak
- National Autistic Society – resources for autistic people and?families??during the coronavirus
Online help for autistic learners
- Twinkl – range of autism resources with illustrations and symbols
- National Autistic Society – information on visual supports
- National Autistic Society – information on social stories™
- National Autistic Society – information on environment and surroundings
- Do2Learn – free activities and guides for social skills and behavioural regulation
- BBC Teach – free videos for primary and secondary ages on a range of subjects
Apps for autistic learners
Managing worry in times of COVID
What is worry and anxiety and what strategies can you use to manage unhelpful worrying?
How do we look after our wellbeing through a balance of activities that provide pleasure, a sense of achievement and closeness with others (included helpful examples)?
How to challenge negative thoughts by developing a compassionate stance & more balanced view?
Download: Managing worry in times of COVID
Public Health England guidance for professionals
- Guidance for schools and other educational settings
- Guidance for health professionals and other organisations
- Guidance for residential care, supported living and home care
Here is the list of resources we've identified for Health practitioners
- Royal College of Nursing (RCN) clinical guidance for managing coronavirus for those across the health and social care workforce. Read here.
- Royal College of Paediatrics and Child’s Health (RCPCH) guidance for health professionals working in paediatrics and child health. Read here.
- NHS England update in regards to Mental Health, Learning Disabilities and Autism: responding to COVID-19, 15th March 2020: first of a series of updates to share information with chief executives of mental health trusts and other mental health service providers, including the independent and third sectors, as well as regional teams and local colleagues. Read here.
- NHS England guidance for providers of community services and how they can release capacity to support COVID-19 preparedness and response, inc. prioritization of services for SEND inc. therapies, community paediatrics and special school nursing- Published 20th March 2020. Read here.
- Health Education England information for Allied Health Professionals during the coronavirus outbreak. Read here.
- Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) COVID-19 advice hub. Read here.
- National Institute for Health and Care Excellence rapid guidelines and evidence reviews during COVID-19. Read here.
- NHS England letter: supporting allied health professionals and allied health professional support workers during the COVID-19 epidemic in the UK, 19th March. Read here.
- Royal College of Occupational Therapists (RCOT): information, resources and FAQs from the RCOT to support occupational therapists throughout the evolving COVID-19 emergency. Read here.
- Chartered Society of Physiotherapists- advice for physiotherapists on taking care of mental health and wellbeing during the COVID-19 outbreak. Read here.