Reviewed 26th May 2023
This page is reviewed and updated regularly. Please check back for updates.
People with pulmonary hypertension (PH) have been classed as clinically extremely vulnerable to COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic.
Although restrictions have now been lifted for a long time, it is important to respect and be considerate of those who may still wish to take a more cautious approach.
If you have pulmonary hypertension, it is really important that you are fully vaccinated. We have a page dedicated to vaccine questions here
We now have a website dedicated to documenting people’s experiences of the pandemic with PH. Visit it here.
In England and Scotland the rules have changed, meaning most people are now unable to access free lateral flow tests. Unfortunately, having pulmonary hypertension does not automatically make you eligible for free tests.
These tests are only available free for those who also qualify for antiviral treatments – those who are immunosuppressed, or who are at the highest risk of becoming seriously ill from COVID-19. If you fall into this category, you will have been notified.
If you have a hospital appointment or procedure that requires you to take a lateral flow test, your hospital will advise you where to obtain this.
Some NHS and social care workers are also eligible for free tests. Find out more here.
If you live in Wales or Northern Ireland, the rules are different. You can access the latest guidance for these nations below:
Following feedback from our members, who told us they would find it helpful to hear from people with PH who have contracted COVID-19, we asked for your experiences. You can read them here.
The NHS is offering antibody and antiviral treatments to people with COVID-19 who are at highest risk of becoming seriously ill. You can find out more about these treatments available here.
Having pulmonary hypertension, does not make you automatically eligible for these treatments. At present, they are being used only for those who are at the highest risk of getting seriously ill from the virus, and this includes those with suppressed immune systems. Those who are eligible should already have received a letter letting them know. If you are unsure about your eligibility, please contact your specialist.
Please watch this video with PH consultant Dr Charlie Elliot, where he explains why hospitals and healthcare settings are safe, and what you should do if you still feel nervous about appointments.
This video was recorded in Spring 2022.
Although legal requirements to wear face coverings have now been lifted in the UK, they may still be required in some areas, such as in healthcare settings.
If you find it difficult to wear a face covering because of your PH, you do not have to wear one – even in places where they are required.
We have created this bespoke exemption notice that you can carry with you and choose to show if you wish.
Some people who find it difficult to wear a mask choose to wear a face shield instead.