Following the new guidance published in response to the Government’s plan to Living with COVID, visiting arrangements have now been revised reflecting it’s guidance for care homes and easing the restrictions on the number of visitors allowed.
As of 4th April 2022, there will be no regular asymptomatic testing for residents, and self-isolation will only apply if a resident tests positive for COVID-19 or if they are admitted from a hospital where there is an active outbreak.
Where a resident is showing symptoms of COVID-19 they will need to isolate and take 2 Lateral Flow tests. The first test is to be taken as soon as they develop symptoms (known as day 0) and the second is 48 hours after the first test (day 2) to confirm their COVID-19 status. If both results are negative, they can come out of isolation providing that they are well.
Should one of the tests be positive, the resident will need to isolate in their room for 10 days and take part in daily Lateral Flow testing from day 5. Residents can end self-isolation after receiving 2 consecutive negative tests 24 hours apart, or after 10 days isolation. Residents in isolation can come out of their room for some time outside (i.e. in the garden), providing they wear a face mask in the communal grounds of the Home 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 even if there is an outbreak in the home.
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, which is the same as our team members.
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 COVID19 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 you should refrain from visiting. Visits are not limited in time, however, to accommodate as many visiting parties each booking slot will be for one hour. Visits can be extended if there are vacant slots.
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 wear a type II surgical facemask, which will be provided by the care home.
Whilst in the resident’s bedroom and providing that people remain socially distanced and there is adequate ventilation in the room, visiting party can remove their facemask. Certain communal spaces which can be closed off to other residents and visiting parties can be booked for a family gathering. Please speak with our team for further details.
We will continue to support visits out of the care home and providing there are no warnings from the local Director of Public Health, there will be no requirement to self-isolate on return to the care home, or indeed, take part in additional testing.