Coronavirus Update

The health, safety and well-being of residents, visitors and team members remains our number one priority and as such, we continue to monitor our services and the impact of the virus whilst introducing the changes suggested by the Government plan in Living with COVID-19.

What we have implemented

During this pandemic we have implemented robust cleaning processes and adapted our environments to minimise the risk of spreading the virus. We have:

  • Installed automated entrance doors, where practicable.
  • Ensured all homes have sufficient steam cleaners for carpets, hard floors, and surfaces
  • Provided all homes with air purifying ozone machines
  • Installed automated sanitising stations for entrances to our homes and in all team areas.
  • Created easy access to a designated room to accommodate indoor visits with glass partitions.
  • Installed wall mounted contactless thermometers in entrances. These will sound an alarm if the temperature is above 37.8⁰C.
  • Set up a contactless signing in system, that uses an iPad and QR codes, to replace the current paper base system.

Visiting

We are delighted that the Government is now easing social restrictions. This advice now enables a higher number of people to come together both in and outdoors. We can now make informed, personal decisions on close contact, such as hugging, taking into consideration that close contact continues to carry a risk of catching or spreading COVID-19.

In our Homes, residents are able to have as many visitors as they wish, who can visit regularly. There is no longer a requirement to complete a lateral flow test prior to the visit, but we endorse that you follow infection control measures socially acceptable in preventing the transmission of respiratory viruses: continue to use a type II surgical face mask, maintain reasonable distancing, respiratory etiquette and practice frequent hand hygiene.

Visitors will no longer be required to show evidence of a negative Lateral Flow test on the day of the visit unless they provide some level of personal care to a resident. If providing personal care visitors will be required to enrol on the twice weekly lateral flow testing.

Visits will continue to be scheduled and we ask visitors who are feeling unwell not to enter the care home, even if they have tested negative for Covid 19 and are fully vaccinated. Symptoms such as a cough, high temperature, diarrhoea, or vomiting may be an indication of other transmissible viruses and infections and therefore they should refrain from visiting.

Visitors and team members will need to wear personal protective equipment (PPE) when providing personal care or supporting a resident at a close distance. All visitors inside the home will need to continue to wear a type II surgical facemask, which will be provided by the care home. Team members and visitors who provide personal care, may require additional personal protective equipment (such as aprons and gloves), please speak with one of our team members.

Whilst in the resident bedroom, and providing that people remain socially distanced and there is proper ventilation in the room, facemask can be removed and resident and visiting party can enjoy a drink. Certain communal spaces, which can be closed off to other residents and visiting parties, can be booked for a family gathering.

Visits indoors away from the Care Home and overnight stays can be planned and, as long there isn’t any warning by the Director of Public Health for each locality, there will be no requirement to self-isolate on return to the Care Home or indeed, to take part on additional testing.

Activities and Events

We have also risk-assessed our day-to-day activities and are adhering to social distancing measures. We are isolating residents and team members who develop COVID-19 related symptoms and protecting residents where appropriate. Our individual communities within the home have been kept separate and we only bring together a reduced number of residents for safe social events and activities in accordance with current Government guidelines.

Despite the challenges faced from Covid-19, our teams are still running a full and engaging programme of activities and have introduced innovative ways to keep residents connected with each other. This includes making use of our facilities such as our hairdressers and cafés and arranging 1-2-1 activities. We are also pleased to have welcomed back entertainers our residents enjoy, whilst ensuring that infection control measures are followed.

New Residents

We continue to welcome new residents to our homes. We are following robust screening measures for potential carriers of the virus, this includes testing residents prior to their move-in.

In line with the most recent government’s announcement, residents moving into a care home no longer need to complete an isolation period, providing they take a PCR test within the 72 hours before admission (or a lateral flow test if they have tested positive for COVID-19 in the past 90 days) and a lateral flow test on the day of admission (day 0).

If either of the tests is positive, or indeed the place where they are moving-in from has an active outbreak, they will be required to self-isolate in their own room.

Where an isolation period is necessary, residents will benefit from a personalised 10-day settling-in period wellbeing program, allowing the team to explore their likes and dislikes, including the types of food they enjoy and the activities they like to spend their time doing.

Contrary to previous guidance, residents in isolation will now be able to come out of their room for some time outside (i.e garden), providing they wear a face mask in communal grounds and take the shortest route between their room and the outdoor space. Residents will also be able to receive one frequent visitor during this time and even, if there is an outbreak in the home.

Our team members continue to be vigilant for any known signs of the virus, and screen residents twice daily for variations in body temperature and blood oxygen saturation levels which are early signs of an infection. We have established regular access to GP services and other clinicians.

This has been one of the most difficult times for all of us, but we must continue to follow the guidance available to reduce onward transmission of COVID-19, and we thank you for your understanding, support, and co-operation.