More information about visits for people in care - October 2020
This information is from North Yorkshire County Council.
It is about some work we have been doing so that people who live in care can keep in touch with their friends and family.
In September, we advised all care providers to stop visits until the end of October.
We did this to help people in care to stay safe from Covid-19.
We asked a group of people to work together to think of ideas about how people can keep in touch. This group includes:
- people who live in care homes
- people who have relatives in care homes
- people who work in or run care homes
- North Yorkshire County Council health and social care staff.
The group had three meetings online in October.
People talked about their experiences of the rules about visiting. People said it was hard not being able to see people they love.
The group wrote down lots of ideas that might make it easier for people in care to be able to stay in touch with their families and friends.
They called this the Keeping in Touch Plan.
You can read the group’s ideas below. What do you think of the ideas?
Did they forget anything? You can send us an email at HASCovidComms@northyorks.gov.uk and let us know.
Task Group draft recommendations
5. Make easy to use information that help everyone to understand the rules and processes for Covid-safe visiting.
This should include information about people living in different tiers; the type of care setting; and if the person has mental capacity.
6. Care providers should have a ‘Keeping in Touch Plan’ for each care setting. This should include risk assessments for the setting and for people who live there.
This would include plans for:
- face to face visits (indoor and outdoor)
- window visits
- virtual visits using technology
- meeting people in the community
9. Care staff are often rushed trying to organise visits for people along with their caring duties and other tasks. Some staff also need training about supporting people with visits.
The Government and North Yorkshire County Council should provide funding for training and for extra staff to support organising visits.
10. There should be support for residents and care staff about using technology to keep in touch. This should include:
- access to a reliable internet service
- access to tablets, iPads and smart phones
- the accessibility of software eg Zoom
- training for people and care staff
Some advice could be given by Technology Champions – these are residents who are comfortable with using technology to stay in touch and can advise other people. We think technology can also help with other things that reduce isolation e.g. physical and mental health activities, virtual appointments with professionals and social events.
11. There should be clear information for providers on supporting people who lack capacity to have meaningful contacts and activities.
This includes advice about best-interest decision making and the role of independent advocacy.
12. There should be standards and advice for care settings about best practice for setting up and management of indoor visiting spaces;
For example, entering and exiting a room using two separate doors.
16. Write clear information for people in care settings who need to use public transport.
This includes working with transport providers to provide information about what they are doing to keep transport clean and Covid-safe.
It also means planning around supporting people with mobility and accessibility issues and appropriate use of PPE.