During the coronavirus pandemic, we are still continuing to provide outstanding care to all our clients. We are also supporting new clients during this time, if you or a loved one need care at home, don’t hesitate to get in touch.
Contact us today to discuss how we can help on tel: 01789 204040
We want to inform all of our clients, and their families and loved ones, about our response to the ongoing Covid-19 outbreak, and reassure you that there will be no changes to the service that you or they receive, and that keeping our clients safe and well remains our number one concern.
In order to achieve this, we have introduced a number of measures and procedures across the company and we continue to appraise the Government’s guidance on delivering home care during this time, to ensure the safety of both our clients and our key worker caregivers.
The measures and procedures include operating with best practises in the use of Personal Protection Equipment (PPE), social distancing and robust infection control and hygiene measures which our caregivers are strictly following.
For the majority of those who will get the illness, we know the symptoms will be quite mild, like a cold or the flu, however the virus poses a significant risk to those with underlying health conditions, such as respiratory conditions or compromised immune systems. We would encourage people who feel they are at risk to be especially careful in following public health guidelines. Of course, anyone with immediate health concerns should contact NHS 111.
Our actions, (as of 18/11/2020) include;
Self-isolation of staff
All staff have been informed of the most up to date guidance in respect of potential self-isolation. Specifically:
- They must self-isolate for at least 10 days from when symptoms start, if they experience the onset of any of the following symptoms, however mild, and should arrange to have a COVID-19 test:
- a new continuous cough
- a high temperature
- a loss of, or change in, your normal sense of taste or smell (anosmia)
- If they are not experiencing symptoms but have tested positive for COVID-19, again they must self-isolate for at least 10 days, starting from the day the test was taken. If symptoms develop during this isolation period, they must restart a 10-day isolation from the day symptoms began.
- If they live with others, all other household members must also stay at home and not leave the house for 14 days. The 14-day period starts from the day when the first person in the household became ill or if they do not have symptoms, from the day their test was taken. If anyone else in the household starts displaying symptoms, they must stay at home for at least 10 days from when their symptoms appear, regardless of what day they are on in their original 14-day isolation period.
Social distancing and Shielding
The UK government have provided clear guidelines on the necessary social distancing measures required to prevent the further spread of coronavirus. Care staff are considered key workers during this time, and as such, all of our staff have been provided with regular information regarding best practice in relation to working and social distancing.
The clinically vulnerable
Further guidance has been provided regarding those who are clinically extremely vulnerable, who are currently advised to stay at home, except for exercise or essential health appointments. Unique Senior Care are also following these guidelines in relation to our staff.
Infection control measures
This virus is thought to spread most easily when the first symptoms show, and during the next 2-3 days. It is also clear that whilst anyone can get the virus, its impact is most serious on elderly people, especially if they have underlying health issues, which include Coronary, Respiratory or Diabetes related conditions. As these categories include some of our clients, following these steps is of even greater significance to help keep them safe and well.
Unique Senior Care already have strict standards on hygiene and infection control, and our staff policy reflects the most up-to-date advice during the Covid-19 outbreak. Details of our policy are as follows:
- When providing close personal care in direct contact (e.g. touching) and within 2 metres of anyone in the household, gloves, aprons and blue surgical masks are required. Where someone either has a positive test, or is suspected to have Covid-19, then fluid repellent masks are used in place of surgical masks.
- Whether the client has symptoms or not, and includes all clients, including those in the ‘extremely vulnerable’ group undergoing shielding and those diagnosed with COVID-19.
- Whenever within 2 metres of someone (client or household member), even if we are not providing direct care to them.
- For all personal care, for example: assisting with getting in/out of bed, feeding, dressing, bathing, grooming, toileting, dressings etc. and or when unintended contact with clients is likely (e.g. when caring for clients with challenging behaviour).
If practical, household members with respiratory symptoms should remain outside the room or rooms where the care worker is working, they should be encouraged to follow good hand and respiratory hygiene and remain 2 metres away.
When within 2 metres of a client or household members but not delivering personal care or needing to touch them, and there is no one within 2 metres, a surgical mask is required as follows:
- For tasks such as: removing medicines from their packaging, prompting people to take their medicines, preparing food for clients who can feed themselves without assistance, or cleaning.
- Any other situation when in a client’s home; or with other staff members, a surgical mask is required.
The following are some of the key ways to help limit the spread of the virus
Clients, family members and employees should;
- Wash your hands and wrists. This is important advice and must be followed. Soap and water is the preferred method, hand sanitiser is only recommended where handwashing facilities are not available
- When entering or exiting any building hands must be washed, especially at a client’s home. Door handles and surfaces are high-touch risk area and extra care must be taken.
- Do not shake hands with anyone, whether at work or not.
- Avoid hugging and kissing anyone apart from your immediate family.
- Do not share cups or water bottles.
- Do not share food and drink.
- Ensure any cutlery or crockery has been thoroughly cleaned before use.
- Clean the rim of beverage cans/bottles before decanting.
- Please ensure you wear clean clothes every day.
- Please refrain from touching your face, nose and eyes. This is a challenge but it is important to keep trying.
- Clean surfaces as frequently as possible with anti-bacterial products, especially in high use areas.
Additionally, employees should also;
- Ensure Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is used wherever necessary and dispose of according to company policy.
- Keep any public areas clean, in line with our office policies
- Try to avoid using other peoples’ telephones or IT equipment.
- Phones, keyboards, mice, etc. should be cleaned in line with our office cleaning policy.
During this challenging time the Unique Senior Care Senior Leadership Team are focused on doing all we can to reduce the impact that the current situation has on our clients and employees. This includes;
- A member of the Senior Leadership Team has been appointed to coordinate all activity relating to the Covid-19 outbreak.
- All Unique Senior Care office staff are working from home, apart from the Operations Teams who remain working from their offices whilst strictly observing social distancing and infection control guidelines.
- Conducting a daily briefing on Covid-19 developments, including updating our contingency plans.
- Regular communications with our staff teams.
- Regular two-way communication with our local Public Health department, the NHS and Local Authority.
- Sharing best practice developments with other care providers.
Reducing non-critical meetings
Whilst we are focused on continuing to deliver services to our clients, we are now conducting all meetings via phone or video conference. We feel by removing any in-person meetings this will help prevent the spread of Covid-19.
Finally, we would like to stress that we want to ensure you receive the care and support you deserve and we are continuing to work very hard to make this happen in a safe and effective way.