Delivering items to someone who is immunocompromised protocol
This is the protocol for delivering items to someone who is self-isolating because they are immunocompromised. It is designed so you do not introduce the virus to their home.
It may appear long and thorough, but it is absolutely essential that virus is not introduced into the home of someone especially at risk, who may need an ICU bed if infected.
The person delivering should not enter the recipient's home at any point during this process, to prevent the virus from being spread into the house (on shoes etc). People receiving deliveries should be aware that anyone who attempts to gain entry is not acting according to protocol.
For situations where it is necessary to enter the recipient's home, see 'Entering a home in self-isolation protocol'.
How to deliver items to someone in self isolation
Before setting out
- Clean and disinfect each item you’re going to deliver, and place them all in a plastic bag which has been disinfected inside and out, or a new bag. See Disinfection protocol for how to disinfect each item.
- If you have been shopping for someone, you should take the items somewhere to disinfect them before delivering. This is especially important with metal and plastic surfaces, as COVID-19 can live on these surfaces for several days.
- If this is not possible, you can take a prepared double bag to the shop and leave the recipient to do the disinfecting once the item has been delivered. You must only do this if you are sure that the recipient is happy to undertake the disinfecting.
- Place the bag in another, larger bag which you have disinfected inside, or which is new. This is to protect your disinfected stuff in the inner bag, so someone immunocompromised can touch it. Close the top as much as you can.
- If you will be travelling by private car, bike, wheelchair or scooter, use bleach solution to disinfect the surfaces you are likely to handle on your journey.
- Disinfect your front door handle, keys, and anything else you will handle as you leave the house.
- Pack hand sanitiser and gloves for your journey, if available.
- Shortly before you leave, clean your phone carefully by wiping it with a soapy cloth.
- Put on a mask or cloth face covering just before you leave the house.
- Wash your hands after putting on your mask, immediately before leaving the house.
While you are out
- Travel to see the person, in a way which minimises your risk of exposure to the virus.
- If possible, travel by pavement, a private car or bike, or a taxi.
- If you must use public transport, use hand sanitiser after travelling if available, or wear gloves which you can change.
- If wearing gloves while travelling, remove these immediately after leaving the station, without touching the exterior with your bare skin. (See the glove protocol for full instructions)
- As you approach the person's house, call/text/etc them to open the door.
- If they live in a block of flats or other building with a communal entrance accessed by a buzzer, call/text and ask them to buzz you in, rather than pressing the button.
- Use hand sanitiser if you have any.
- Put on fresh gloves if you have any, ensuring that you touch only the cuff of the glove with your bare hand. This minimises the risk of transmitting virus to the exterior of your gloved hands.
- Ask the recipient to back away from the open door at least two meters.
- Put the double bag on the doorstep/on the ground immediately outside the door so that the person can reach it from inside. Do not step through the doorway.
- Fold down the outer bag so they don’t have to touch it. Don’t touch the inner bag.
- Do this as quickly as possible, and don't talk while doing it.
- Back away two meters, and let them get the items by picking up the inner bag and lifting it out of the outer bag, while you remain at a distance of two meters. (Feel free to shout greetings! But don’t hug/hand off items in person/etc.)
- When they have retrieved the inner bag, ask them to back away inside, and take the outer bag away with you.
- Wash your hands as soon as possible after leaving.
If the recipient is not happy for the double-bag to be placed outside the door (for example, in severe weather conditions), you can place it immediately inside the door, without stepping though the doorway, and follow the same procedure. After you leave, the recipient should wash/disinfect the area where the outer bag rested.
If you need to collect cash or any other items from the house, see Collecting items from someone who is immunocompromised protocol.