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UK CF Medical Associations statement on coronavirus

Advice from the UK CF Medical Association (UKCFMA) for people with cystic fibrosis and their families to help minimise their risk of coronavirus (COVID-19) infection.

If you have questions that are not answered in the below please contact our Helpline on While we endeavour to answer all of your questions, please note specific medical questions should be answered by your CF team who have a full understanding of your medical history. As the outbreak develops, we are continuing to update our Q&A page on coronavirus and have also created an FAQ for those with concerns about how corona virus may impact education, work or finances.

Last updated: 24 March 2020

This statement is an update to advice given on 17 March following the latest NHS advice given on 22 March.

Current guidance is that all adults and children with cystic fibrosis are in the group of people thought to be extremely vulnerable to severe illness from infection with COVID-19. All people with cystic fibrosis, their families, friends and carers should follow the specific NHS guidance for shielding and protecting.

It is essential that people with cystic fibrosis stay at home at all times and avoid any face-to-face contact for at least the next 12 weeks until further advice is available. Do not attend your local hospital or outpatients without checking with your CF service first. Routine reviews will no longer be conducted face to face.

The government has set a website where people with cystic fibrosis can register for help such as shopping deliveries and any additional care that you might need whilst shielding.

People living in the same home as someone with cystic fibrosis are not required to adopt the same protective shielding measures for themselves, but it is essential that they follow all of the guidance for social distancing. They should only go outside for food, health reasons or for essential work and must stay at least 2 metres apart from all other people at all times.

Anyone who has to enter a home where a person with cystic fibrosis is living must wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds immediately on arrival and often whilst they are there.

Strictly avoid contact with anyone with a high temperature and/or a new continuous cough. If this is somebody who lives with you then they should try and stay somewhere else.

If you develop a high temperature above 37.8 °C and/or a new continuous cough, get clinical advice using the NHS 111 online coronavirus service and contact your local CF service.  If you don’t have internet access call 111. If you are seriously ill call 999.

Keep up with all of your regular treatments, do some exercise and eat well as advised by your CF dietitian.

Keep positive and look after your mental as well as your physical health. The every mind matters website has some useful tips about looking after your mental wellbeing.