Beating bowel cancer together

Advice for clinically extremely vulnerable people

Page updated: Monday 30 November 2020

Some people with cancer are more at risk of becoming seriously ill from coronavirus. The Government has produced guidance for these 'clinically extremely vulnerable' people. It is also for their family, friends and carers.

Extremely vulnerable people include:

  • people with cancer who are having chemotherapy
  • people who are having radical radiotherapy for lung cancer. This includes people with bowel cancer whose cancer has spread to the lung
  • people receiving immunotherapy treatments
  • people receiving other targeted treatments which can affect their immune system.

For the full list, please refer to government guidance.


If you develop symptoms

If you think you have developed symptoms of COVID-19 such as a new, continuous cough or fever, seek clinical advice using the NHS 111 online coronavirus service or call NHS 111. Do this as soon as you get symptoms.

In an emergency, call 999 if you’re seriously ill. Do this as soon as you get symptoms.

Do not visit the GP, pharmacy, urgent care centre or a hospital.

Prepare a single hospital bag. This will help the NHS provide you with the best care if you need to go to hospital as a result of catching coronavirus. Your bag should include:

  • your emergency contact
  • a list of the medications you take (including dose and frequency)
  • any information on your planned care appointments
  • things you would need for an overnight stay (for example, medication, pyjamas, toothbrush and snacks)
  • your advanced care plan (only if you have one)


There is separate guidance for people in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. We’ve reviewed government advice and put together the information pages below.

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