In light of the on-going coronavirus pandemic, we wish to reassure our residents, their families, our staff and suppliers that we are dealing with any suspected outbreak in accordance with published NHS Guidelines. This covers the potential identification and diagnosis of the virus in someone connected to one of our homes or support offices, as well as the process to be followed thereafter – isolation of the patient and the environmental deep cleaning of the home.
Coronavirus is a mild, upper respiratory tract infection, with or without fever, and a cough that can potentially develop into pneumonia, causing breathing difficulties. As with influenza, coronavirus can be more dangerous for vulnerable people such as the elderly and those with cancer, diabetes, chronic lung disease and other conditions that result in a weakened immune system. The virus is most often spread via close (up to six feet) person-to-person contact. Just like influenza and other respiratory illnesses, respiratory droplets from infected coughs or sneezes can land in the mouths or noses of those nearby or be inhaled into their lungs. However, it’s still unclear if a person can get 2019-nCoV by handling a virus-contaminated surface or object and then touching their own mouth, nose or eyes. Typically, with most respiratory viruses, people are thought to be at their most contagious when they appear ill with symptoms.
Restricted Access to the Home
Unfortunately, visitors, contractors, professionals, etc. cannot enter the Home unless it is absolutely necessary and the following precautions have been taken:
- Valid reason for entering the home, i.e. Resident in End of life, close family will be admitted and supported to follow our handwashing and disinfecting procedure on immediately entering the home. For any Resident showing increased distress or anxiety due to isolation restrictions, our staff will follow an “Essential Visit Plan” to identify safe access route and procedure for relatives minimising risk to staff and other residents.
- GP or Emergency Service will access handwashing/disinfection facilities prior to entry, OT’s and other professionals to be informed of “closed door” procedure and only vital appointments will be accepted.
- Contractors – only vital repairs and strict adherence to handwashing procedure. All contractors will be supervised by Maintenance Support during the entire visit.
- Deliveries and Supplies – delivered to outside the building front or kitchen area and brought in by maintenance/ancillary team.
- Post – container left in outer foyer to avoid entrance to the home. For signature required deliveries, staff will go to outer foyer to prevent unnecessary entry to the home.
If you are suffering with any symptoms of the virus or been in contact with anyone who is, please call NHS 111 immediately for advice. The NHS/Gov.UK publishes the following guidelines for those who feel that they may be at risk: