Your Safety is Our Priority
The health, safety, and wellbeing of our residents, visitors and staff is our top priority.
Our plans are kept under regular review and are updated as and when advised by the public health authorities.
Government guidance currently states that for the safety of our service users, no close-contact indoor visits can take place we will be unable to support other visits inside the home unless in exceptional circumstances.
We are being extra vigilant in monitoring our teams for signs of the virus using rapid result tests as well as PCR tests. Rapid testing will also be used to support additional visits in homes that are outbreak free when out of lockdown. Our regular PCR testing programme continues to safeguard service users and staff.
"We are welcoming new residents safely, so please contact us if you are looking for care or need any further help."
Our services are still accepting new admissions but with a few extra measures to keep everyone as safe as possible. All new services are being asked to take a test for the virus prior to admission and are closely monitored thereafter.
Timing of the vaccinations is driven by the national vaccination programme, but we are doing all we can to support what is proving to be an effective process. We recognise that both vaccines require a second dose before they are fully effective and as such, do not anticipate any significant changes to our current ways of working until the second dose has been delivered. Our number one priority remains the safety and wellbeing of everyone living and working in various services.
Since the early stages of the pandemic, our teams have been working to a COVID-19 risk assessment plan which is updated to reflect any changes to government guidance. This plan includes a range of measures aimed at both reducing the likelihood of new Covid-19 infections and reducing the spread of infections where they occur. Our key focus are included below:
- Our teams are following guidance around infection control and prevention measures and the correct wearing of PPE.
- We have maintained a high stock level of PPE, cleaning and decontamination items and continue to source from multiple suppliers to reduce the risk of any future shortages.
- We have been taking advantage of all available testing, ensuring colleagues have three weekly Covid-19 tests and residents are tested at least once a month.
- We have introduced protocols to support family visits that, when possible under Government guidance, are as safe and enjoyable as possible for all involved. We are continuing to invest in new technologies to maintain family connections.
- We are not accepting Covid-positive admissions and ask all new service users to have a test prior to admission
- Should there be a confirmed or suspected case of Covid-19 in one of our services, it will follow it’s Risk Management Plan which includes additional safety and IPC protocols.
- We have measures in place to limit the number of non-essential people coming into our homes. This includes a strong focus on reducing agency workers and postponing all non-essential visits.
- Teams are receiving additional support to deliver enhanced cleaning regimes using high quality hygiene products.
Keeping in touch
Services are working hard to find ways to keep service users in touch with their loved ones. Visiting options vary from service to service depending on the levels of risk in each service, property layout and the local community.
We are doing our utmost to keep service users connected to their loved ones using a wide range of tools. This includes regular using devices for Zoom, Skype and phone calls.
All visits must be pre-booked to enable us to manage them safely and ensure the appropriate cleaning and hygiene regimes are in place. This also enables our teams to identify which type of visit is best suited to you and your loved one and to take you through the protocols we have in place to protect everyone involved. If you are showing any symptoms which could indicate coronavirus, please do not travel to the service as you will not be able to proceed with your visit.
Rapid testing kits are still being rolled out by the Department of Health and Social Care. These tests are providing an additional layer of reassurance for service users and staff and enabling us to identify asymptomatic cases of the virus very early on. Once the national lockdown has lifted, these tests will enable us to offer additional visits inside our services.
Our teams are working in innovative ways despite Government restrictions to ensure our service users do not miss out on skills development and fun group activities. We have introduced the Service User Involvement Programme initiative and the Wheel of Engagement initiative to facilitate this during pandemic to improve quality of their lives in these difficult and confusing times.