COVID-19 health protection guidance
- Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Overview and latest guidance
The guidance publications on these pages are intended to provide public health information for health and social care and other settings in Scotland.
All our guidance documents are live documents.
They are updated as the situation develops.
Health Protection Team (HPT) guidance
Health protection teams (HPTs) are encouraged to view the guidance online. Saving versions offline means you may miss updates.
As of 7 September 2022, the Scottish Government has produced updated guidance on use of face coverings in social care settings (including adult care homes).
See the main messages in COVID-19 - information and guidance for social, community, residential care and prison settings
Recently updated guidance
Subscribe to COVID-19 health protection updates
Guidance for health and social care settings
This set of guidance covers settings or situations that primarily involve health and social care.
COVID-19 care home outbreak checklist
The COVID-19 outbreak checklist is a supplementary resource for those working in care home settings during an outbreak of COVID-19 infection.
More information on COVID-19 outbreak management in care home settings is available in COVID-19: information and guidance for social, community and residential care settings.
Guidance for non-healthcare settings
This set of guidance covers settings or situations that do not primarily involve health and social care.
Infection prevention and control (IPC)
For all infection prevention and control advice for health and social care settings, refer to the National Infection Prevention and Control Manual (NIPCM).
There are a number of educational resources to support the COVID-19 response.
These resources are aligned as appropriate with national guidance detailed on this website.
Correct use of alcohol-based hand rub (ABHR)
Correct hand hygiene technique using soap and water
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
This short film shows the correct order for putting on, the safe order for removal, and the disposal of PPE for healthcare workers in a primary care setting (droplet). This technique could also be applied in other settings.
It aligns with guidance for PPE requirements in primary and secondary care settings. However, the PPE donning and doffing shown is not exclusive to these settings as PPE requirements for practitioners will vary depending on the clinical activities being undertaken.
Current guidance relating to PPE is liable to change and practitioners are reminded to refer to current guidance which can be accessed on this website.
Sampling and testing for COVID-19
Upper respiratory tract sample
This short film describes the techniques involved in obtaining an upper respiratory tract COVID-19 diagnostic sample.
Swab test in care home residents
This film on the NES website provides the information and keys steps to follow to obtain a swab test from people in care homes. Its focus is on how you safely and correctly perform a swab test in the throat and nose, and includes packaging of the specimen on completion of the test.
Packaging of diagnostic samples
This guidance video outlines the correct way to package samples from suspected COVID-19 patients for Category B transport, in line with UN3373 requirements. It is part of the initial investigation of possible cases collection.
View further information on our website about infection prevention and control and laboratory safety, including appropriate use of PPE, decontamination and handling of waste.
COVID-19: safe handling and processing for laboratories (external website) from Public Health England covers clinical diagnostic laboratory practice in England.
Further resources from NHS Education Scotland (NES)
TURAS Learn has a range of COVID-19 educational resources for all health and social care staff.
Content is under continual review and practitioners are asked to frequently refer to the website to ensure that they have access to the most current resources.
The Infection Prevention and Control (IPC) zone on TURAS provides information on education resources for health and social care staff and students in Scotland.
Information for the public
You can find out information for the public on COVID-19 on NHS inform
If you are considering or intending to travel you can find country-specific guidance on our fitfortravel website.
Health professionals advising travellers can find guidance on our subscription travel health website TRAVAX.
COVID-19 guidance archive
These are for reference only and should not be used or circulated.
We maintain an archive of all previously published versions of the health protection guidance and supporting resources that relate to COVID-19.
This archive includes resources that have been retired from the website because they have been superseded or are no longer required.