Support to self-isolate grants now available for parents

Parents who need to take time off work to look after children who are self-isolating can now apply for financial support.


The help is available as part of a package of support for residents across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough aimed at assisting people who are legally required to self-isolate and reduce the spread of Covid-19.

More than 2,268 payments have already been handed out totalling £1.134m across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough to people who have been notified by NHS Test and Trace to self-isolate.

The scheme has now been expanded to include parents of children aged 15 and under (up to 25 with an EHC plan) who are not legally required to self-isolate, who need to take time off work if their children are required to do so. Parents can claim for the £500 grant if:

  • Their child has been asked to isolate by NHS Test Trace or by their school or childcare setting due to being identified as a close contact of someone who has tested positive, and the isolation starts on or after 8 March
  • They are employed or self-employed
  • They cannot work from home
  • The parent or guardian meets all the other criteria for the Test and Trace scheme

People are able to claim more than once for subsequent periods of isolation and only one parent can claim for a child.

Dr Liz Robin, Director of Public Health for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, said: "It is good news eligibility for the scheme has been extended to include parents who need to have time off work to look after a child legally required to self-isolate. It will allow us to support even more people to self-isolate to reduce the chains of transmission.

"We know that self-isolating may be a daunting prospect for some people, but our message is that help is at hand, so please get in touch with us.

"Financial support is available for people who cannot work from home and will lose income by having to self-isolate. Our network of support hubs can also help with grocery shopping, medicine collection, dog walking and many other ways too. 

"Self-isolation is absolutely crucial for reducing the spread of Covid-19 and helping everybody to get back to doing the things they miss."

People need to self-isolate if they have one or more symptoms of coronavirus or have tested positive, if they live with someone who has symptoms or has tested positive, or if they have been identified as a close contact of a positive case and told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace.

Cambridgeshire County Council, Peterborough City Council and the district and city councils across Cambridgeshire have a range of support available to help anyone to self-isolate.

This includes:

  • The government's Test and Trace Support Payment Scheme. This scheme entitles people who meet certain criteria to a one-off payment of £500 if they lose income as a result of not being able to work. This payment can be made available on multiple occasions if a person comes into contact with people who test positive a second or even third time.
  •  For anyone not eligible for the Test and Trace Support Payment Scheme - a local discretionary hardship fund is available to help ensure people don't suffer financially.
  • In Fenland, Fenland District Council's COVID-19 Community Hub can support people with grocery shopping, medicine collection and other day-to-day essentials. It can also refer people directly to a Citizen's Advice Rural Cambs advisor who can provide free, impartial advice to help with concerns such as money, debts, benefits, Universal Credit, work and employment and much more. Contact the hub on 01354 654321 or email:
  • The Rosmini Centre in Wisbech can also provide advice and support on the above issues in different languages. Call 01945 474422 or email:

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