Increase to visiting numbers – We are pleased to inform our residents family and friends that, as of 17 May 2021 each resident will be allocated up to 5 designated visitors that can visit them within the home. However, this remains restricted to 2 visitors at any one time and the guidance regarding LFD testing and booking process remains the same. All visitors are required to wear PPE and can may hold hands however close contact is not yet permitted as we remain cautious about spread of infection.
Outdoor visits – Friends and family members who are not designated visitors may continue to visit from outdoors, however these visits must booked in advance and maximum of 2. In the interest of resident safety, they must also wear full PPE and socially distance from the resident.
External outings – With regards residents being taken on trips outside the Home this may now be facilitated if they arrange for a designated visitor or staff member to accompany them. Residents may visit parks and other outdoor spaces however they should not go indoors unless absolutely necessary i.e. to use the toilet facilities. Visit to dentists/chiropodists etc may also be facilitated without the requirement to isolate for 14 days, however anyone who is admitted to the Home or is subject to a hospital in-patient stay will be required to isolate for 14 days.
Dear Relatives and Friends We are pleased to advise that in compliance with the Government’s recommendations, controlled visits for families and friends will soon be facilitated across our homes from 8 March 2021. This is extremely positive news as it will finally enable our residents to reunite with their loved ones. We are acutely aware that social interaction is vitally important for our residents’ emotional and psychological welfare and that this has been dearly missed during this pandemic. However, we must remind ourselves that the pandemic and Covid-19 are still very much prevalent, therefore the safety and welfare of our residents, staff and indeed visitors is of paramount importance and all visits will be facilitated keeping this in mind. Please note that all relevant existing policies and procedures will be amended in line with the Government’s new guidance. All visitors must adhere to these guidelines during visits. We would like to thank you all for your incredible patience and understanding at this time. Please rest assured that all families and next of kin will be advised fully of particular guidance and practical measures in writing prior to the commencement of visits.
We reported on our last website update that we were excited at the thought of our residents being able to reunite with their families and that Prestwick Care would do their utmost to facilitate such visits. Our goal has not changed, however, as you will be aware, recent guidance and Government instruction has meant further restrictions and regional lockdowns due to increased risks. As you will be aware from widespread coverage, daily fatalities have been over 1,000 a day and our NHS is under extreme pressure, even more so than in the first wave. I am pleased to inform you that we have a now been supplied with rapid testing kits and facilitated the training required for our staff to be able to successfully follow the administration process. Our colleagues at the Local Authorities, PHE and CCG have been liaising with all the care providers regarding rapid testing plans. As we mentioned before, this is a mammoth task to comply with regulations and legal requirements, as well as providing the manpower required to carry out this testing safely and efficiently. We continue to work with Local Authorities and our NHS colleagues so that monitored and structured visits will be facilitated in the coming period. Please rest assured that we do understand the frustration and heartache it brings to families to continue visiting restrictions and that we do not take this action lightly. We are committed however to follow Government instructions and above all, work to keep your loved ones safe and protected. We ask you once again to be patient and encourage you to remain in touch with us using virtual visits, telephone calls etc. to continue to communicate with your families and our staff. Please also keep in touch via our website for further updates. We are here as ever to support you and our residents through this very difficult time.
We are extremely excited at the thought of our residents being able to reunite with their families and would like to reassure you that Prestwick Care will do their utmost to facilitate such visits. However, it would appear that the Central Government’s announcement has been made in haste without adequate preparation and planning at the local level. To date, our homes have not been supplied with the rapid testing kits or the training required for our staff to be able to successfully follow the administration process. Our colleagues at the Local Authorities, PHE and CCG have been liaising with all the care providers regarding rapid testing plans. Although they acknowledge this is a mammoth task to comply with regulations and legal requirements, as well as the manpower required to carry out this testing, they are not aware of what support if any would be offered by Central Government. We would like to assure everyone that we at Prestwick Care will do our utmost to prepare, plan and work with Local Authorities and our NHS colleagues so that monitored and structured visits could be facilitated. During this evolving period we will provide continuous updates as policies and procedures are developed, and the provision of rapid testing kits along with adequate training is finalised. In the meantime, we encourage you to remain in touch with us using virtual visits, telephone calls etc. to continue to communicate with your families and our staff. Be safe and take care.
24.11.20 Update – Possibility of Opening Care Homes to Visitors
We are sure that you would have been following the National Press Reports regarding opening of care homes to visitors. We at Prestwick Care are acutely aware of the difficulties all relatives have been experiencing while not being able to enter care homes. Our residents too would appreciate nothing more than the idea of being able to see their loved ones again and more regularly. Our staff have also missed the relatives and their valuable input and support that is so important to improve our day to day care operations. Currently, we are starting to receive some initial guidelines from Local Authorities, Public Health England as well as CCG’s who are working cohesively across the region while providing input. These however are initial steps as any care home visits under the current pandemic would have several significant considerations prior to such visits being facilitated. Our focus all along while restricting admissions and non-essential visits, has been the welfare of our residents and staff. We are sure that we continue to receive your understanding in this regard while we work to develop proposals and implement policies to accommodate safe and structured visits into the homes in due course. We will continue to provide regular updates on our website in this regard.
As you will be aware from the news reports Coronavirus remain prevalent in the North East meaning further restrictions have been placed on the local community which includes care homes. Prestwick Care would like to thank visitors for respecting the procedures we have implemented to maintain the safety of the residents and advise that there are currently no changes to the above statement.
From 4th September 2020, Prestwick Care received information from Public Health England of a rise in Covid 19 cases in local care homes. We have therefore made the decision, to manage the risk to the residents in the care homes, to close the homes to all visits including Garden and Window visits. We will continue to monitor this and open the homes up at the earliest opportunity. This is not a decision we wished to take and appreciate that this is not a decision families would wish for, however we trust that your ongoing support will enable us to keep your loved ones safe.