Coronavirus: How to get Help

Sign up here for coronavirus support as an extremely vulnerable person from the UK Government.

Request support from Liverpool City Council.

The Brain Charity can also help anyone with a neurological condition, their family and carers with shopping, collecting prescriptions, etc.

If you need help, please get in touch: Email The Brain Charity or call us free on 0800 008 6417 (Monday-Friday: 9am-4.30pm)

The single most important action we can all take in fighting coronavirus is to stay at home in order to protect the NHS and save lives.

link: Easy-Read guide to Coronavirus from Mencap
link: information in BSL from the NHS
link: NHS guidance in other languages

A coronavirus is a type of virus. The symptoms of the coronavirus (COVID-19 or Novel Coronavirus) are:

  • a new, continuous cough
  • a high temperature
  • shortness of breath

You can spread the virus even if you don’t have symptoms.

Info from: NHS England and NHS Wales.

  • If you think you have symptoms, do not go to a GP, pharmacy or hospital.
  • Go to the NHS 111 coronavirus online service if you are concerned. Only phone 111 if you can't access them online.
  • You must only leave home for 1 of 4 reasons:
    • to shop for basic essentials
    • for any medical need, or to provide care or to help a vulnerable person
    • one form of exercise a day
    • to travel to and from work - but only if absolutely necessary.
    These 4 reasons are exceptions – even when doing these activities, you should be minimising time spent outside of the home and ensuring you are 2 metres apart from anyone outside of your household.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 secondsas soon as you get home.
  • Coronavirus (COVID-19): what you need to do (Gov.UK)


  • To use the free GOV.UK Coronavirus Information Service on WhatsApp, simply add 07860 064422 in your phone contacts and then message the word ‘hi’ in a WhatsApp message to get started.
  • Coronavirus and claiming benefits (Universal Credit website)

Wash your hands

"Washing your hands is one of the easiest ways to protect yourself and others from illnesses such as food poisoning and flu." Info from: NHS

"Wash your hands more often than usual, for 20 seconds using soap and hot water, particularly after coughing, sneezing and blowing your nose, or after being in public areas where other people are doing so. Use hand sanitiser if that’s all you have access to." Info from: Public Health England

See Also:

When you are stockpiling far too much stuff, and you find it very difficult to get rid of, you have a hoarding disorder. Your home becomes very cluttered and disorganised, and it all starts to take over your everyday life.

People may develop a hoarding problem for many different reasons. Often it may be because of anxiety or depression, or it may be a form of OCD. You may well develop this kind of mental health problem if you are struggling to manage a neurological condition.

Many people with a hoarding disorder do not recognise that they have a problem. Or they may feel it is too embarrassing to talk about.

Hoarding can lead to serious health and safety problems. Hoarding can make it difficult to clean your home. The clutter may cause you to trip and fall. And many household fires involve hoarding - not only is a fire likely to start in the clutter, it can be very difficult to escape from the fire because of all the stuff in the way..

So if you are worried that someone has a hoarding probem, it is important for you to encourage them to ask for help. This does not mean someone just chucking everything out, because this will not help, and is very likely to cause distress. And extra storage space won't solve the problem either. Someone with a hoarding problem needs to have a chat with their GP, or with somebody from a support group.

  • The Brain Charity is able to provide counselling at our centre in Liverpool. Contact our information team on 0800 008 6417 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

More information and support

National Hoarding Awareness Week Hoarding Awareness Week for 2020 starts on 18th May. This campaign was founded by the National Fire Chiefs Council.

Link opens in new window COVID-19: guidance for the public on mental health and wellbeing (Gov.UK)
Link opens in new window Coronavirus and your wellbeing (Mind)

What is Anxiety?

Anxiety is a normal, if unpleasant, part of life, and it can affect us all in different ways and at different times. Anxiety is something that can persist whether or not the cause is clear to the sufferer.

Anxiety can make a person imagine that things in their life are worse than they really are, and prevent them from confronting their fears. Some people have a very identifiable cause for their anxiety; a traumatic incident, lots of stressors or have undergone a significant life event (moving house, getting divorced, having surgery). However, some people do not have an identifiable cause for their anxiety and this causes them some distress. Often people use something positive that they can do to manage their anxiety, such as yoga, exercise, reading, listening to music or spending time with family or friends.

Symptoms of Anxiety

Common physical symptoms

  • Increased heart rate
  • Increased muscle tension
  • Hyperventilation (over breathing)
  • Dizziness
  • Dry mouth
  • Shaking
  • Palpitations
  • Increased perspiration
  • Tension headaches

Common psychological symptoms

  • Thinking you may lose control of your mind/thoughts
  • Thinking you might die
  • Feeling detached from your environment and the people in it
  • Feeling like wanting to run away/escape from the situation
  • Feeling on edge and alert to everything around you

Retrieved from:

Getting support

  • The Brain Charity can offer counselling, and stress and relaxation treatments, at our centre in Liverpool (check our events calendar). We also have our own library, which has a wide range of information on neurological conditions, and on living with a condition.
  • We can also help you with support and advice about benefits and work, wherever you are in the UK.

Other places to find support

Advice for people at high risk (GOV.UK)
COVID-19 and Rare Neuroimmune Disorders (Siegel Rare Neuroimmune Association)

Get coronavirus support as an extremely vulnerable person (GOV.UK)

Living with a rare condition"A rare disease is defined ... as one that affects fewer than 5 in 10,000 of the general population. There are between 6,000 and 8,000 known rare diseases and around five new rare diseases are described in the medical literature each week. In the UK, a single rare disease may affect up to about 30,000 people. The vast majority of rare diseases will affect far fewer than this - some will affect only a handful - or even a single person in the whole of the UK."  Source: Rare Disease UK

If you can't find information in our A-Z of neurological conditions, try the links below, or you can contact us and we will have a look for some information for you.

At The Brain Charity's library and information centre in Liverpool, we have information on many rare conditions. You can also read our copy of Contact's booklet "Living with a rare condition".


  • Rare Disease Day is held on the last day of February to raise awareness for rare diseases.
  • Wear Jeans for Genes Day is held every September to raise funds for children and families affected by genetic disorders

Chronic pain is a common problem in many neurological conditions. Try asking your GP for help, perhaps this might include physiotherapy, or for a referral to a pain clinic.

Complementary therapies might help you to manage better, and counselling might help as well. Counselling is also available at our centre in Liverpool.

Living With Chronic Pain : The Complete Health Guide to the Causes and Cures for Chronic Pain Our library in Liverpool has lots of useful information about chronic pain, including the book Living With Chronic Pain : The Complete Health Guide to the Causes and Cures for Chronic Pain by Jennifer Schneder.