COVID-19

 

12th March 2020

​

Dear All

 

Re: Coronavirus COVID-19

 

I thought I would write to let you know the steps that we have taken to combat the coronavirus.

 

  1. All staff receive detailed infection control and food hygiene training as part of our mandatory training programme.

  2. Every member of staff has received a 1:1 training session on the coronavirus, its symptoms and the actions that should be taken to help prevent its spread.

  3. We have issued Easy Read hand hygiene guides for our service users and the staff have sat down and gone through these with each person.

  4. We are providing our staff with information bulletins weekly and as and when there are changes to the government guidelines.

  5. We have purchased significant supplies of hand hygiene products and these are being made available to staff and service users alike.

  6. We have purchase supplies of Personal Protective Equipment should we need to support individuals whilst in self-isolation.

  7. We have instigated a procedure to review supply levels weekly so as to ensure restocking is achieved well before depletion.

  8. Staff are continually prompting individuals to wash and sanitise their hands.

  9. We have instigated a detailed Coronavirus Business Continuity Plan that is now in operation alongside our normal business continuity protocols.

  10. We have limited non-family visitors to the home to only those meetings that are essential.

  11. We have instigated a visitor screening process for anyone who does need to attend the home for essential purposes.

  12. We have completed coronavirus risk assessments for all service users and have put into place specific action plans for those individuals that we have identified as high risk due to their age or underlying medical conditions.

  13. We have revised our activities plans to reduce the risk of exposure to the virus via proximity to large gatherings.

  14. We have issued guidance to our employees about overseas travel and have ensured that we are aware of all of our employee’s overseas travel plans. We continue to assess these against the list of areas designated as high risk.

  15. We have ring-fenced a budget for investment in on-site activities and entertainments.

  16. We have reaffirmed our relationship with a supplier of agency staff should this be necessary and checked their Coronavirus protocols.

  17. We have mapped a process to follow should a staff member notify us of their infection or suspected infection or that of a service user.

  18. We continue to review the government guidelines daily.

  19. We have imposed an embargo on staff booking annual leave in order to better manage our staffing numbers should the virus start to impact on the availability of staff.

  20. All staff have access to a free counselling helpline should they have any concerns which they to discuss confidentially.

  21. We are in contact with the supplier of our medications in order that any issues they may be experiencing are communicated to us as early as possible.

  22. We have stocked up on additional food supplies.

 

Both Andrew and I, as well and our Managers and Deputies, are working every hour to ensure that we are as prepared as we possibly can be for whatever the next few weeks and months bring.

 

As a preventative measure we are asking visitors, including family members and friends, to minimise visits to our homes until further notice. Therefore we are asking you to restrict your visits to a minimum in order to keep your loved ones, and all our other residents, as safe as possible.  We have not taken this decision lightly, and appreciate that this may cause some discomfort, but feel that this is a necessary step to take.

 

In addition, visits from the local community and external entertainment into the home have been cancelled for the foreseeable future.  Our staff will do all they can to ensure that life in our services remains as comfortable and sociable as possible.  We will still ensure that vital medical visits are made, and our staff will ensure that any visitors that do come into the home are not displaying any symptoms and that they thoroughly wash their hands on entering the home.

 

Please do not visit if you are feeling  unwell, particularly if you have a cough, a fever, or high temperature, or have shortness of breath or have  recently been abroad or been in close contact with someone who has, or if you, a partner, or a dependent has recently returned from a Category 1 or Category 2 country as defined on the NHS website. 

 

We would really appreciate your support with these measures. In the unfortunate situation that we do have a case in one of our homes we will need to stop all visiting completely and we will keep you informed accordingly.

 

If there is a situation that requires a non-routine visit to the home we would ask that you discuss this with the Manager to ensure that the appropriate precautionary measures can be taken to limit any potential risk.

 

Please rest assured we will continue to do everything possible to keep our service users and staff safe and healthy. This is, and always will be, our highest priority.

 

Yours sincerely

 

Nicola Elliott

Managing Director

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Head Office: 1 Oak Croft, Bearsted, Maidstone Kent, ME14 4GF | Telephone: 0845 527 0228 | email: info@oakviewcare.com

Home locations: Carmarthenshire, Wales | Berkshire, England