Latest update: w/c 27th July
Latest update for family and friends
Challenging times are ongoing for everybody but particularly those who live in care homes and work in the sector. I would like to continue to express my heartfelt thank you for the incredible commitment shown by colleagues, and the resilience and faith shown by residents and their families.
We maintain the highest level of vigilance and follow all Government guidance and so are continually updating processes and protocols to ensure that our residents’, employees’ and visitors’ safety remain at the heart of every decision taken.
After being selected to take part in a Government testing pilot programme, employees have been tested weekly throughout July regardless of whether they show symptoms, and residents will all have one test. This enables us to identify potential cases of COVID-19 much sooner and between July 6 and 29, we carried out 11,585 tests, which have returned a 99.45% negative rate in employees and 99.77% negative rate in residents. The Government announced that all care homes would receive ongoing testing from 1 August and therefore we are expecting to move seamlessly from our pilot to this new process.
Encouraging socialising in the homes has been a key development and residents can now take part in activities with fellow residents in small groups and socially distanced at a distance of two metres. The only exception to this is new residents who are required to isolate for 14 days in line with Government guidance.
We have been accommodating two people from the same household or social bubble to visit their loved ones in our homes, but the latest Government guidance now restricts that to one constant visitor. We appreciate how disappointing this will be to families, but it is important that we follow all the latest guidance from the Government.
Visits are held by appointment only in homes that are not experiencing an outbreak, which the Government defines as two individuals whether resident or employee who are a confirmed or suspected case. Visits will happen in an outside space or from a ground floor room window. In line with Government guidance, we will allow a resident unable to access the outdoors to have a visit in their room under strict protocols. We will continue to prioritise visits from up to two individuals from the same household to residents who may be in end of life care. To arrange a controlled visit please contact the Home Manager.
We are also complying fully with the NHS Test and Trace service, which requires all visitors’ details to be recorded. The information gathered will only be accessible to our Information Governance team and will be automatically deleted after 21 days. The information will only be shared with NHS Test & Trace, and only if they request the details of visitors to the office for that period following a positive diagnosis of an employee or other visitor.
We know that the return of hairdressers to homes is something that residents have wanted, and we have put robust procedures in place to enable this, while maintaining high levels of safety for residents and employees of our homes. A risk assessment will be carried out for each appointment and appointments will not be possible for residents of a home that has experienced an outbreak within the last 28 days. Residents who are isolating or have had a positive test within 14 days will also be unable to have an appointment.
The salon must be thoroughly cleaned before and after every appointment and all shared items such as magazines will be removed. The hairdresser must have had a negative COVID-19 test result before restarting appointments and this will be done by the home on a weekly basis as will a temperature check on every day the hairdresser attends the home.
Each home will also provide full PPE for the hairdresser and visitors.
Please continue to be reassured that we are all working tirelessly to ensure that your loved ones are staying safe, happy and well. I encourage you to look at our social media pages or our OSJCT Moments page on our website to see the continued wonderful experiences our residents are having while being cared for by our frontline heroes.
Here are ten ways we are supporting our residents and colleagues during Covid-19. Our homes are open to admissions, visit https://t.co/AdZ6KVP2fF for more details. #trustwecare #adaptingtoCovid pic.twitter.com/m9Y0va9R5x— OSJCT (@OSJCT) July 27, 2020
If you wish to view further information for visitors, please click on this link to take you to our visitor information news page.