Our take on Christmas away with family or friends.

Because we are a specialist residential care service we have strict care home guidance to follow (this can be seen via the previous post).

The guidance allows us to formulate risk assessments to make sure we can say yes to most requests as long as families commit to helping us.

Here is our take on making Christmas enjoyable and safer for everyone (unless anything changes beyond our control).

People are encouraged to go to family homes for xmas for small gatherings with that household providing everyone who will be there provided us with an LFD (rapid lateral flow test) before they go and again before we accept them back here into our care homes if the stay was overnight. No one there should be unwell with something that could be brought back here.

If anyone else joins you who wasn’t tested they must LFD test negative before arriving and not be poorly.

If families intend to visit out (for example to see extended family for dinner or to exchange gifts indoors then the people in that location must all LFD test negative close to the time before our resident arrives.

No residents should be going out to pubs, restaurants etc (anywhere high risk) unless they are prepared, willing and capable of coping with 14 days of strict isolation in their room when they return here. Our risk assessment is designed to avoid the need to isolate because we feel doing so would be very unfair.

No one who has been informed that they are a close contact of someone who has Covid should be near our residents. You should ask people this question before allowing them to enter your home.

If people can comply with the testing while with family request then there is no need to isolate on return because we are allowed to opt for ten days of LFD testing if the outing isn’t high risk.

If anyone agrees to this but intentionally breaks the agreement then they impose isolation on their loved ones.

If people can follow all of this then there is no reason residents can’t stay with family or friends and enjoy their usual routine when they come back with the exception of daily lfd testing that they are quite familiar with now.

Families must agree that if anyone in their household tests positive during the stay the resident would need to isolate with them before coming back here unless we already have covid positive residents in the house they are returning too.

All of this will be undone if our homes go into outbreak status if staff or residents here test positive so we are all being incredibly careful so home visits can still go ahead.

We can supply families with a plentiful supply of LFD tests to make this happen and are happy to discuss plans to make sure we can keep things low risk to avoid catching Covid or the need to isolate.

Please remember that the need to LFD extends to travelling in private cars etc before a resident enters the car. Where possible please all wear a mask in any vehicle and lower windows a little to get air moving because it reduces the chance of catching covid in such a small space.

Opening a few windows at home to get fresh air circulating also helps to reduce the spread of the virus too.

If any families are finding it difficult to get face masks we can help. We have hand soap and alcohol gel to share if needed because keeping hands clean is a big part of infection prevention.

We have been asked to avoid using public transport (particularly buses) so if anyone would experience financial hardship by needing to book a taxi please speak to us as we are able to help with this.

We know now that testing close to the time people will meet works best at preventing the spread of all Covid variants so please try to test in the two hours before visiting others and ask them to do the same for you.

We will do our very best to support you but really need everybody to help us.

Thank you for caring.

#say yes if they will all test.