***Update 9th May 2022: It is no longer necessary to pre-book your visit with the care home***
The government has announced a new set of guidance for care home visiting, which comes into force from 4th April.
The new arrangements remove the need for most visitors to carry out an LFT Covid test before entering the home, and also remove the requirement for the regular testing of residents without Covid-19 symptoms.
Whilst sensible precautions must remain in place to protect those in our care, we are pleased that this latest guidance makes it easier for our residents to see their loved ones - something which we know is incredibly beneficial for their mental health and wellbeing.
Visiting a care home
Until now, all those visiting loved ones in care homes have been required to show proof of a negative Covid-19 test result before entering the home. New government guidance now means that, as of 4th April, only those visitors providing personal care to residents will need to do an LFT earlier on the day of their visit.
All visitors will still be asked to wear facemasks, but only those providing personal care will need to test before entering the home. Those providing personal care on a regular basis will need to test twice a week and wear additional PPE as appropriate for the care they are providing.
Please contact the home directly if you are unsure as to whether you will need to test before visiting.
Testing and self-isolation for residents
In line with the latest government guidance, residents will no longer have to undertake regular asymptomatic testing as of 4th April.
Instead, residents will only be asked to test if they show symptoms, or if they are moving into the home from another setting.
Self-isolation now only applies if a resident has tested positive for Covid-19, or if they have been discharged from a setting (for example a hospital ward) where there is an active outbreak. The guidance no longer requires residents to isolate if they have been in contact with someone who has tested positive.
Isolation lasts for 10 days, but can end sooner if the resident has two consecutive negative test results on Days 5 and 6 of their isolation (with the date of their positive test being Day 0). Visiting may still be able to take place under certain circumstances with residents who are self-isolating.
Arranging your visit
Whilst all restrictions on the number and frequency of visits to care homes have now been lifted, we would ask you to please continue to contact the home directly to arrange your visit in advance.
Sadly, Covid-19 does still exist in our communities, and this may sometimes mean we need to take additional steps to keep our residents safe. We will do all we can to minimise any impact on visiting, as we know how important this is to residents and visitors alike.
We kindly ask that you do not visit if you are unwell or have symptoms.
Please pre-book your visit to ensure you are fully up-to-speed with arrangements at the home you are visiting, and can focus on spending time with your loved one. Thank you.