Services during COVID-19

Introduction

Local authorities have set up community supports to help people during the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.

A number of other initiatives have also been set up to help people who are affected by measures to prevent the spread of the virus.

The Government has published a guide to keeping safe (pdf) while the COVID-19 emergency measures are in place.

This document lists the contact details for services you might need over the coming weeks. It will be updated regularly as more services are set up.

You can also read about supports for families during COVID-19.

Community Call

The Government announced the Community Call on 2 April. The purpose of Community Call is to co-ordinate local services and make them easy to access for people who need them.

Local authorities have set up local Community Response Forums in each local authority area. You can get the contact details for the forum in your area in the list below. You can also call a national number, which is being managed by the charity Alone.

The national number is 0818 222 024. This number is available from 8am to 8pm, Monday to Sunday.

What kind of help is available?

Call the national number, or your local authority’s community response number if you need help with:

  • Shopping for food, fuel and other essential household items
  • Transport to medical appointments
  • Delivery of hot meals through local meals on wheels services
  • Collection of prescribed medicines

If you are not sure who you should call for your particular needs, the national helpline and the numbers listed below will be able to advise you.

Carlow County Council 1800 814 300 covidsupport@carlowcoco.ie
Cavan County Council 1800 300 404 covidsupport@cavancoco.ie
Clare County Council 1890 252 943 covidsupport@clarecoco.ie
Cork City Council 1800 222 226 covidsupport@corkcity.ie
Cork County Council 1800 805 819 covidsupport@corkcoco.ie
Donegal County Council 1800 928 982 covidsupport@donegalcoco.ie
Dublin City Council 01 222 8555 covidsupport@dublincity.ie
Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council 01 271 3199 covidsupport@dlrcoco.ie
Fingal County Council 01 890 5000 covidsupport@fingal.ie
Galway City Council 1800 400 150 covidsupport@galwaycity.ie
Galway County Council 1800 928 894 and 091 509 390 covidsupport@galwaycoco.ie
Kerry County Council 1800 807 009 covidsupport@kerrycoco.ie
Kildare County Council 1800 300 174 covidsupport@kildarecoco.ie
Kilkenny County Council 1800 500 000 covidcommunity@kilkennycoco.ie
Laois County Council 1800 832 010 covidsupport@laoiscoco.ie
Leitrim County Council 1800 852 389 and 071 965 0473 covidsupport@leitrimcoco.ie
Limerick City and County Council 1800 832 005 covidsupport@limerick.ie
Longford County Council 1800 300 122 covidsupport@longfordcoco.ie
Louth County Council 1800 805 817 covidsupport@louthcoco.ie
Mayo County Council 094 906 4660 covidsupport@mayococo.ie
Meath County Council 1800 808 809 covidsupport@meathcoco.ie
Monaghan County Council 1800 804 158 covidsupport@monaghancoco.ie
Offaly County Council 1800 818 181 covidsupport@offalycoco.ie
Roscommon County Council 1800 200 727 covidsupport@roscommoncoco.ie
Sligo County Council 1800 292 765 covidsupport@sligococo.ie
South Dublin County Council 1800 240519 covidsupport@sdublincoco.ie
Tipperary County Council 076 106 5000 covid19@tipperarycoco.ie
Waterford City and County Council 1800 250 185 covidsupport@waterfordcouncil.ie
Westmeath County Council 1800 805 816 covidsupport@westmeathcoco.ie
Wexford County Council 053 919 6000 covidsupport@wexfordcoco.ie
Wicklow County Council 1800 868 399 covidsupport@wicklowcoco.ie

Services from An Post

An Post is providing extra services for older and more vulnerable people:

You can register with An Post to have a postman or postwoman call to your house during their delivery route. The postal worker can contact the Alone helpline on your behalf if you need help to access local services. You have to register for this service.

If you have post that you want delivered, you can put a sign in your window that says I HAVE MAIL, and the postman or postwoman will collect it and send it for you free of charge.

An Post will also have a newspaper delivery service. More details on this will be available soon.

You can get more information from the the An Post website

Local health services

If you are feeling unwell, you should phone your GP for advice. You should avoid going to the GP surgery.

If you have a scheduled hospital appointment (or any other medical appointment) during this time, phone your GP or specialist for advice on whether you should attend.

Your hospital may need to cancel or postpone some clinics and appointments. You should contact them by phone to confirm your appointments.

If you fall seriously ill, you should go to hospital. You can contact the emergency services for free on 999 or 112.

Pharmacies

Temporary laws have been put in place to allow GPs to send prescriptions to pharmacies by email. This means that you may not need to go to your GP surgery if you need a prescription for medication.

If you have a prescription that needs to be renewed, your local pharmacy can do this for you in most cases.

If you cannot go to the pharmacy, you can contact the local community support number listed above. The Pharmaceutical Society of Ireland has issued guidelines on the delivery of medicines through voluntary and state bodies.

Dental health

You will not be able to attend routine dental visits during the COVID-19 emergency period. For your health (and the health of your dentist), dentistry is temporarily limited to emergency services only.

You should continue to look after your oral health by maintaining a healthy diet and oral hygiene routine. The HSE has information on learn how to care for your teeth and gums.

Mental health services

You may feel mixed emotions during the COVID-19 emergency period. This is a challenging time, and feelings of stress, anxiety and worry are normal. Your mental health is just as important as your physical health, and it is important you look after it during this time.

If you need to talk to someone urgently, you can call Samaritans at any time for free on 116 123.

While you may not be able to see a counsellor face to face, you can access many mental health services online, over the phone and by text. These include:

Samaritans

If you are in distress or struggling to cope:

  • Free-phone 116 123 (any time, day or night)
  • Email jo@samaritans.ie (for a response within 24 hours)

Pieta House

If you are suicidal or engaging in self-harm:

  • Free-phone 1800 247 247 (any time, day or night)
  • Text HELP to 51444 (standard rates apply)

Aware

If you need support with your own mood or the mood of a friend or family member:

  • Free-phone 1800 80 48 48 (from 10am to 10pm daily).
  • Email supportmail@aware.ie for a response within 24 hours.

Crisis Text Line Ireland

If you need confidential messaging support at any time, day or night:

  • Text TALK to 086 1800 280 (standard rates may apply).

The HSE has a full list of online, phone and text mental health services.

You should try to keep in touch with friends and family through phone calls, video calls or texts with friends. Social media can also be useful for keeping in touch during the emergency period. However, if you feel as if social media is adding to your worries, consider taking a break from it.

Resources for exercising at home

During COVID-19, you can only exercise within 5 kilometres of your home, keeping a 2-metre distance from other people at all times. If you would like to do additional exercise at home, there are many resources to help.

Age & Opportunity broadcasts a series of 15-minute seated exercise sessions for older adults online. You can watch the exercise sessions live on Facebook at 11am on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. You can also watch previous sessions on YouTube.

Cara Centre has also put together a series of 10-minute circuits that can be done at home or in your garden. The series includes adapted exercises for wheelchair users or people with reduced mobility. You can access these exercises every week.

Triathlon Ireland has shared a selection of at-home workout videos too. While you might not be able to swim, bike or run, the videos include at-home strength sessions and nutrition advice. You can watch the exercise sessions on YouTube.

You can find more exercise resources on the Sport Ireland website.

Religious services

Christian denominations

You might not be able to attend mass or church services during the COVID-19 emergency period, but you can watch many church services online. You can find links to a variety of church services (as well as scheduled mass and service times), from the following websites:

If you do not have access to the internet, RTÉ News Now shows mass at 10.30am every weekday from St Eunan’s and St Columba’s Cathedral, Letterkenny, Co Donegal.

You can watch RTÉ News Now on:

  • Saorview, channel 21
  • Sky, channel 521
  • Virgin Media, channel 200
  • Eir, channel 517
  • RTÉ Player or RTÉ News Now app

Islam

If you would like information about Ramadan during the COVID-19 emergency period, the Irish Council of Imams has issued a statement about the rules for fasting and prayer at home.

For more updates, you can visit the Islamic Cultural Centre of Ireland’s website, or you can follow them on Twitter and Facebook.

Judaism

For advice on Judaism during the COVID-19 emergency period, you can phone the Jewish Representative Council of Ireland on (01) 546 1096. Alternatively, you can email them on office@jewishireland.org.

Household services and repairs

Supermarket deliveries

If you are 70 or older (or if you are particularly vulnerable to COVID-19), you should try to avoid going to the shops. Instead, you can have your groceries delivered to your home.

Some supermarkets allow you to shop for groceries online and have them delivered at a time that suits you. You should only use this service if you cannot go to the supermarket yourself. Delivery slots are limited and should be reserved for those who need them most.

You can read more about shopping during COVID-19.

Hardware shop deliveries

If you need supplies for DIY or home repairs, a number of hardware shops around the country offer home delivery. You can buy a range of items online and have them delivered.

Depending on the store, you may have to wait approximately 7-14 days for your order to arrive.

Utility services during COVID-19

Some utility services have been designated essential during the COVID-19 emergency period.

If you have an electrical or plumbing emergency, you can call a plumber or electrician. The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission has advice on hiring tradespeople. For your safety (as well as their own), plumbers and electricians must meet all HSE and WHO hygiene standards. You should always use a Registered Electrical Contractor (REC) to carry out electrical work in your home and ask for a Completion Certificate after the work is done.

If you have an urgent question about your drinking water supply, you can phone Irish Water at any time on 1850 278 278.

If you smell gas, you should phone Gas Networks Ireland immediately (day or night) on 1850 20 50 50.

If you have a power cut, you should phone ESB Networks’ 24-hour emergency line on 1850 372 999.

Request a call back

If you have a question about your situation during the COVID-19 emergency period, you can request a call back from the Citizens Information Service.

Volunteer to help

If you want to volunteer in your local community, you can read Government advice for volunteers. You can also contact your local volunteer service.

Page edited: 8 May 2020