COVID-19 Restrictions easing: What it means to us

As Boris Johnson announced this week, the majority of restrictions have been lifted from the 19th July. This includes social distancing and removing the requirement of wearing a mask. We understand that this change can be stressful to both staff and clients and so below are the measures that we will be taking to ensure a safe continuity to our services.

The new rules:

Rules have not yet been confirmed to definitely happen on the 19th July but should step four proceed we will see:

  • No more limits on social contact to allow people to gather in groups of any size.
  • The removal of the “one metre-plus” rule in almost all settings other than places such as airports.
  • All remaining businesses, including nightclubs able to reopen.
  • No capacity caps on large-scale events such as sports matches, theatre shows or concerts.
  •  No more legal requirement on wearing face masks in shops or on public transport
  • The government will no longer require people to work from home
  • No more limits on the number of people who are able to visit care home residents

The Government has mentioned that these new rules will mean that cases will drastically increase. This means that we have to take steps to ensure the well being of both staff and client.

What will we be doing?

-All of our staff have received the COVID-19 Vaccine and most have already received both doses.

-We will continue to encourage staff to wear face masks and goggles in clients homes. This will continue to be a mandatory part of the job. We will also continue testing staff weekly for COVID-19 using PCR Tests. Our staff have been encouraged to order Rapid COVID Tests from the Government website to check more frequently. We will continue to follow the same protocol for isolating staff when positive, when they have been contacted by test and trace and when they have been in contact with someone who is positive.

PPE Such as gloves and aprons have always been a mandatory piece of equipment even pre-COVID so they will still be used at all times. Due to restrictions easing we are expecting more COVID Cases which may also lead to staff becoming infected. We have identified this as a risk and are taking steps to reduce the risk and also to find a solution should this happen. We are constantly recruiting for more staff and have staff trained and ready to replace others should they fall sick.

Our strategy of care has always been to have key carers for each client. This means that our carers work in geographical codes minimising contact with other carers. This is so that carers and clients can form a bond and get to know each other very well. Whilst this is still one of our priorities, this has become difficult due to the pandemic. Our carers are split based on geographical codes meaning new carers are being introduced to cover increased staff sickness. Staff are trained for all clients needs should they be required to cover sickness due to Coronavirus.

The office teams manage this process remotely from the office. We are communicating with staff by phone/electronically, so that carers do not have to visit office unnecessarily. This again, minimises the risk of transmitting the virus between our team members and protects the office based teams. Some of our office staff are first reserve carers who can step in as and when necessary.

Our clients are extremely vulnerable to this virus, so carers are fully briefed, according to the current guidelines. They are fully aware of the new processes and procedures, which need to be followed and new guidelines are communicated. It’s very important that understanding is confirmed, quickly and regularly to avoid confusion. All carers have access to full PPE that must be worn in all clients homes to protect them against catching the Coronavirus infection from clients and passing this on.

Everyone is facing an extremely challenging situation accentuated because COVID-19 is unprecedented and scenarios are constantly changing and developing. This means our guidelines for care have to also. We are doing everything that we can to continue to deliver the excellent care we are known for. This will never change and neither will our commitment to the safety and wellbeing of our clients and carers. As a company, we’re here to support our carers and their families as well as our clients and their families. We are all facing a very difficult situation together.

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