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BREAKING NEWS: New coronavirus guidance for social care issued by the government

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Guidance on who should visit those in care during the coronavirus outbreak and what to do if a positive case is identified.

The guidance comes after many care homes went into lockdown after the number of cases rose sharply in the UK this week.

Health & Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock said: “I understand how worried people most in need of care will be about coronavirus, and how concerned families around the country will be for their loved ones. And I want everyone to know we are working around the clock to ensure we do everything possible to reduce the risk vulnerable and elderly people face.”

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Anyone who is suspected of having COVID-19, with a new continuous cough or high temperature, is advised to not visit care homes or people receiving home care and self-isolate.

People receiving care should be isolated in their rooms if they have coronavirus symptoms. Care staff are advised to use protective equipment to minimise the risk of transmission.

GPs have been asked to look at the possibility of offering digital appointments for patients and their families.

Councils have been told to map out all care and support plans to prioritise people who are at the highest risk and contact all registered providers in their local area to facilitate plans for mutual aid.

The guidance can be found by clicking here.

A new taskforce has been launched by the government to support local areas bringing together experts from across key sectors, including adult social care, to assess Local Resilience Forum plans, and provide support and advice to ensure that they are robust.

More information on the local taskforce can be found here.

 

Tags : Best practiceCoronavirusHealth & Safety
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The author Lee Peart

40 Comments

  1. My husband has alzeimers disease he is in a care home I was so distressed to be informed that I am only allowed to visit for one hour between 6+7pm a time when most residents are tired and ready for bed to think after all our years together and time is of the essence my husbands comfort of a visitor is significantly reduced WHO IS MAKING THESE DECISIONS. IT IS CRUEL WHAT HAPPENED TO A PRAGMATIC APPROACH I am so distressed by these decions

    1. I totally understand your pain. My dad has Alzheimer’s and can’t understand the how’s and why’s of all this. Currently we can still visit but there’s talk of “lockdown “. He will not cope with not seeing family as a bare minimum. We still take him out at least three times a week as mentally he does not do well spending all day everyday in the home. I fear for his mental health and would rather he live what is left of his life in the best way possible, even if that means he contracts the Coronavirus. At least he would die knowing he was loved as opposed to feeling abandoned.

      1. Yes, Bethan. I absolutely agree. Care home residents are always worse off, mentally, while living in care homes. To be fair, care homes do nothing to improve their residents quality of lives. If THAT isn’t the truth, then I don’t know what is. I really beg to differ when people think that poorly people are better off living in care homes than living with family or friends. Time to get rid of these care institutions.

        1. I work in a care home, lockdown is entirely for the residents safety, we are doing our utmost to keep the virus out of our home and our residents safe. Yes it is very confusing and frustrating for them not being able to see their loved ones but we assist them to make face time calls to their families which helps even for Dementia residents who even though they don’t always understand enjoy seeing their loved ones faces.
          Our care home holds activities every day and we are still doing this through lockdown to keep the days as enjoyable and stimulating as possible. Staff are wonderful and even though exhausted they smile and care for our residents giving them love and as much happiness as they have always done.
          Carers are not given enough credit, they go above and beyond their duties and work tirelessly to give residents the feeling that we are all a family. I am proud of my team and felt I should stand up for us reading these comments.

        2. Such ignorant comments from somebody who doesn’t even put their name to them
          You have insulted all care home workers, who have worked tirelessly during this pandemic to look after other people’s loved ones. Very often going to work scared and worried about transmitting Covid-19. The care team that I work with are extremely dedicated to their work and have become the residents family during these unprecedented times.
          People that make sweeping judgements about all care homes only add fuel to the fire, that all homes are bad. Believe me there are lots of good ones out there.

    2. 🙏🙏🙏🙏 WE ARE LIVING IN A TIME WERE PRAYING IS MUCH NEEDED AND TRY ING NOT TO MEDITATE ON FEAR. MY THOUGHTS ARE WITH YOU ALL AND PRAYERS.

      1. I have a daughter in a care home she is 40 years old .can the care home take her out in the minebus we have thy can’t take her out on the bus

  2. What about care in the community? I employ carers. I feel greatly at risk since my carers are visiting others in the community or have other employment where they meet many people.

    1. I work in community care and I am also worried as dont know if to self isolate but I am well enough and dont have any symptoms as or yet but it’s scary because I work with elderly vulnerable patients on palliative care and dont want to put then at risk or harm but nore do they seem worried about the virus as such it’s more of the food and other essential shortages at the moment and staff going off sick its worrying

    2. I fully understand all your concerns. I work in a care home and what people need to consider is that although they might be prepared to allow their loved one to risk infection what about everyone else that lives and works in the home. I’m sure things will be put in place if really necessary. The world is basically going on lockdown to protect the vulnerable in society!

      1. A care home in West Oxfordshire has had proven cases of Covid, but the management won’t allow staff to wear PPE unless directly doing something with a resident. They say the PPE scares the residents…

  3. My mum has Alzheimer’s and I received a phone call on Friday morning saying a lockdown is now in place. I was not allowed in to explain to mum why I wouldn’t be there. She has started a new drug for anxiety and initially it makes her anxiety worse. I understand the reason for lockdown but Carers are still going out and in and if this carries on for weeks/months I worry about the effect it will have on my mum

  4. If you employ carers they will be taking the necessary measures to ensure that they do not transmit the COVID 19 virus. I totally understand that you feel distressed at not being able to see your husband, however care homes are on lockdown for a reason. Your husband is more at risk due to his health and age, as is the case with most care home residents. It’s not to upset, it’s not to be awkward, it’s to save lives. Speaking as a care worker in a home, the threat is real and keeping non essential personnel offsite and restricting visits will help in the long term.

  5. residents with complex health issues receive support from family members in partnership with the home. Without this support the person will not survive current medical conditions let alone the threat of virus.
    Each person needs to be assessed to see where extra support is being given from external visitors.
    It is not a one size fits all so should be treated sensibly with the welfare of the redidents being paramount
    There is no difference between a family member & an agency or care worker entering the homes unless the care worker remains on .the premises.
    Often agency or care workers are going to other jobs mixing with Lots of people so risk to residents is higher whereas family members are generally always mindful of there movements & their own health before going into care homes. With tighter restraints & monitoring there should be a way to allow families to still remain in partnership with the homes to deliver care the resident has been receiving from both parties. If it is a General visit these types of visits can be limited to one representative at an agreed time until
    We get through this Pandemic. If this contact has been key in the residents rehabilitation & sustainably it is detrimental to the resident to pull the support away. They will end up deteriorating from their existing conditions.. Each case should be treated sensitively..
    in addition perhaps more able residents with good mindset might think of returning to families for a period to give families reassurance ; freeing up the carers to support the more vulnerable.
    Only if it is feasible with environment; resources & the family can cope & all parties are in agreement.

    1. As a carer work in care home as to put lockdown. On home to protect home residents. Staff. Need be safe. Follower cqc NHS standards fully trained but if famiky was allowed. In be carry on not be beat. In care home. We aim safety others your allowed. Phone calls. If home never put lockdown on. Famiky did contact coronovirsa would be isolated in isc not be allowed with them as be conitmented and not allow. To after. Passed. So everythink. Is wellbeing of others. Not rip familys apart. It’s world we fighting. At present.

    2. My sister works in a care home and has been picked up by fellow workers in their car as there is no public transport. She has now heard that this is not allowed as they don’t all live in the same household. She has no other way of getting to work. Is this true?

  6. I work in community care and I am also worried as dont know if to self isolate but I am well enough and dont have any symptoms as or yet but it’s scary because I work with elderly vulnerable patients on palliative care and dont want to put then at risk or harm but nore do they seem worried about the virus as such it’s more of the food and other essential shortages at the moment and staff going off sick its worrying

  7. At the end of the day,all these provisions are in place for a reason….I have worked in healthcare for almost 20 years,and understand it is hard to cope with this abrupt change,I am a mum of an 8 year old and might have to go on t lockdown myself where I work…..its not what I expect or want,but it is what it is and we need to be strong and resiliant, we are all stronger as one…

  8. I work in a care home and while I understand the upset a lockdown is causing it is essential. With visitors coming in and out we have no way of tracking where you have been or who you have been with. You could unknowingly bring the virus in and infect not only your loved one but other residents and staff as well. Yes care workers are coming in and out to do their shifts but we are very mindful of our job and the vulnerable people we support so try to limit contact as much as we can outside of the job. We are also trying to minimise the amount of people coming into the home to minimise the risk of a spread of infection. It is hard but it is being done for the right reasons. And as someone above has said maybe those more able residents and those of more sound mind could visit their family for a few weeks so the family know they are safe and to allow carers to support the more vulnerable or those in the home that have no family. It’s a testing time and I think a lot of people need to think of why things are being done a certain way. No one wants to stop anyone seeing their family but this is a need not a want. Stay safe everyone and to all the careers, home carers, doctors, nurses and health professionals let’s keep calm and carry on!

  9. My partner is a care worker in a dementia home,as much as family members wish to see their family members in the home ,they have to limit who comes and goes to protect both residents and staff ,my partner is staying home other than going to work to protect the vunrable people he works for, i my self am in the high risk with health issues ,if care workers catch this virus who will be looking after your loved ones ,let alone the speed this virus would move through a care home ,which would be catastrophic to both residents and care workers alike .please trust that care homes and their staff are doing there very best at this difficult time ,and are putting your family before there own

  10. I work in a care home and it is in lockdown, however our activities coordinator has taken them out on a walk in wheelchairs,so if in lockdown why are they allowed out of premises

  11. ‘Everybody’ has to trust each other..We have to trust where others have ‘been’!!! ..I mean look at the ‘state’ some humans are ‘behaving’ in ‘This’ situation. already…off-course ‘Some’ ‘Arnt’ going to tell you the truth!!!..Scary.

  12. Why cant all Care workers be tested or screened for Covid-19 before they enter the premises. This will save lives.

  13. If I ever develop Alzheimer’s I’d happily take the chance of getting something that would kill me quickly rather than be forced to endure the horror and indignity of dementia for years. I intend to make it clear in an advanced directive that I would not want my life prolonged by being protected and wrapped in cotton wool.

  14. Can I take my partner to work , she’s a care worker in a home, we have separate addresses but she can’t drive and would not be able to get to work on time using public transport, which would take a couple of hours and require more than one bus.

    1. im the same, i work 3 days a week as a maintenance man in a care home for mental health , ive been cleaning windows and basically scratching around finding things to do , i dont feel safe i feel im putting myself and family at risk for basically nothing, i was told if i dont come in i wont get paid,

  15. My wife is working in a care home and I’m on the high risk list .she wants to self isolate but her work wont let her and if she gets it will only get sick pay for 2 weeks

  16. What are the best ways I can help my mother by phone while in care home? She is , I think, deteriorating mentally. I sing, read poetry which she loves, sing hymns as she misses Church. She seems increasingly confused about how to work TV, phone etc. Any advice lines?

  17. @ KRIS, me too 🙂 What is the point in receiving care for years on end, and then just dying? Who wants to come back as a vegetable? I am going to have a DNR put in place. It’s all about the care homes these days. The care staff want all of the credit, but I’m afraid that has to be earned, or should be. Not by force of the government. But by being decent enough. You are right. It would just be a waste of life and very boring to just be living in a care home for year after year. I feel upset just THINKING about it.

  18. i work 3 days a week as a maintenance man in a care home for mental health , ive been cleaning windows and basically scratching around finding things to do , i dont feel safe, i feel im putting myself and family at risk for basically nothing, i was told if i dont come in i wont get paid,

  19. Having read most
    Of these comments i am shocked and dismayed by the lack of thought for the care staff .
    If you are anti care homes Or feel you can do better for your family member take them home and look after them Your self . But it’s about time care homes and there staff had a respect for the job they do and there own families cannot . Be grateful for these incredible people who are doing there best not just at this diff i time but all the time .

  20. I am a carer and my clients daughter refuses to adhere to social rules where you shouldn’t have friends in and out of your house – the father and daughter live together can I refuse to go in when she has her friends in? They are aware of the lockdown and 2m rules

  21. Hi I work as a chef in a nursing home, I appreciate these are trying times but only just recently my manager has asked me to wear a mask, I was furloughed for 2.5 months but been back to work in last 3 weeks. The try I have is i have asthma and COPD and in the kitchen i can only wear a mask for 30 minutes tops before I have breathing difficulty, I am currently wearing a visor which is not practical as the steam from cooking causes it to blur and i still cant breathe 100 per cent properly i purchased a cotton mask with filter but she said this is not acceptable, we have temperature checked every shift, swabs every week constant hand washing and i have no contact with the residents and distanced from staff what are my options?

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