We are delighted to have reunited our residents with their first designated visitors at the majority of our care homes in line with the most recent government guidance.
However, we must make sure that we reintroduce visiting in the safest possible way. We have carried out dynamic risk assessments and reviewed our visiting policy in accordance with the new guidance. Each resident has their own individualised visiting plan and we continue to encourage close family members to be involved in the development of this.
We understand how difficult the decision to name designated visitors may be and we have been supporting our residents in any way we can. Where a resident is unable to make this decision for themselves, we have been working with family members and friends to make a best interest decision on their behalf.
All visiting arrangements are subject to strict infection control protocols and vary depending on location.
Care Home Visiting in England
In England, our visiting arrangements may expand from 12th April 2021 to allow each resident to choose up to two designated visitors to visit them regularly indoors. The manager of your loved one’s care home will be in contact with the additional designated visitor with full details and confirmation of the start date.
Care Home Visiting in Scotland
Currently, in Scotland, guidelines allow us to reunite residents with up to two designated visitors visiting one at a time.
Care Home Visiting in Wales
In Wales, the announcement from the Welsh Assembly on 12th March has indicated care home visits will be able to commence, but this will be under caution until residents have had their second Covid-19 vaccination. Current guidance allows each resident to identify one designated visitor or a designated deputy. Each care home has to comply with additional guidance from the local Director of Public Health which may vary from Welsh Government advice. The home manager of your loved one’s care home will assist in explaining the arrangements.
Changes to Visiting
The manager of your relative’s care home will contact you by letter, email or telephone when their new visiting arrangements are ready, advising the start date, booking process and infection control procedures visitors will need to follow. This will include information on the lateral flow tests that nominated visitors will be required to take.
Many of our care homes have already welcomed their first designated indoor visitors, while others are finalising their plans to open for pre-booked visits when it is safe for them to do so. We kindly ask that you bear with us until we are confident that each home can welcome nominated visitors safely and comfortably for our residents, their relatives and our staff.
Additional visiting options including garden, garden pod (with a substantial screen) and window visits may also be available. These depend upon the location and layout of your local care home.
For the most up-to-date visiting arrangements for your local care home, please contact your home manager.
*The term ‘designated visitor’ means that it must be the same two people or person visiting.