Visiting your friends and relatives in care homes
Today we have written to care homes, and the families and friends of residents, outlining new guidance for care home visiting in the county.
Dear family and friends,
As you will know, since I wrote to care home managers in October, the national situation linked to Covid has changed, with local and regional restrictions largely being replaced by a set of nationwide measures.
You may also remember that we were exploring ways that might make it possible for more visiting to take place at the same time as keeping the risk of Covid to a minimum.
We know that it has been a difficult and distressing time not being able to see your friends and family, and I want to assure you that we take no pleasure in restricting visiting and nor do we have any intention to keep you from seeing those you care and love for a moment longer than is necessary.
In light of new national guidance being issued on Thursday 5 November, it was important that we had the chance to review the new national guidance associated with care home visiting, to ensure plans we had developed complemented the national position.
We have now sent our revised guidance and advice to care home managers setting out some general principles which will allow more care home visiting to take place and a check list to help them to evaluate the risks associated with their home, their residents and their visitors. An overview of the new plan will made available on our website by the end of Wednesday 11 November.
With the current rate of infection in Gloucestershire at 125.7 per 100,000 population and rising, and a number of cases linked to care home staff and residents, it is still important that measures are in place to protect residents from Covid-19. This might include: a maximum of two consistent visitors, staggered arrival times and physical Covid secure measures, such as screens.
Please bear with your home as they digest the new guidance, and work through their individual risk assessments. They will be in touch with you on a one-to-one basis as soon as they can.
We will continue to review our overall approach to care home visiting and will continue to engage with, and inform you of any further updates.Thank you again for everything you are doing to prevent the spread of the virus and the ongoing sacrifices you have made to help keep all in Gloucestershire safe.
Sarah Scott, Director of Public Health
Margaret Willcox, Executive Director of Adult Social Care