We are following the governments advice on how to deal with the Coronavirus, as outlined here.
Letter from Sally Tidy CEO
As you are aware the Government are imposing a new Lockdown in England this Thursday, as yet we have not had new guidance as to how this will affect our services, however as soon as we know we will ensure you are aware.
We are living in worrying times and I thought following the news yesterday, that reported a relatively local Care Home with a significant outbreak of Covid, I would write with an update of how the Society’s services are doing.
I am pleased to report that after the small outbreak in our Nursing home in April of this year where 3 residents got the virus, our residents since have remained COVID free. Our staff are being tested weekly and residents monthly. To date we have identified some asymptomatic staff, who have been isolated immediately, fortunately, this has not spread to any Residents. As we had 2 members of staff test positive in the same week, Public Health England defined this as an outbreak and placed Hatch Mill into lockdown, no staff or residents have tested positive since.
PPE supplies remain good and our staff are strictly following all infection control procedures. Masks are being worn at all times when in contact with residents and all communal areas have been redesigned to promote social distancing.
Please bear with us in these difficult times, our staff are going that extra mile to ensure all remain as safe as possible, we will be following the government guidance strictly and hope to keep the virus out. Please do not embarrass or intimidate our staff for implementing the rules – it is outside their control.
I appreciate this is a difficult time for all and heart-breaking not being able to see loved ones. We are trying our hardest to keep morale up, our staff are working endlessly to ensure your loved ones are not only cared for physically but socially as well. If you would like to know more, please chat to one of our staff or visit our Facebook page to see what we are doing. We have now launched our new website which will also have more information in the coming weeks. The links for both are below.
Chief Executive Officer
1st October – The Society is concerned that with winter approaching external visiting areas may be unsuitable. We will endeavour to provide COVID safe internal visiting areas within our homes, however as we are sure everyone can appreciate, the logistics of this are challenging. Most homes will only have the capacity to receive one visitor at a time due to space and infection control processes, therefore, visiting times and frequency may have to be restricted. Please check with each home individually for visiting capacity and protocols.
Please note that our visiting policy may be withdrawn at any point if the local area ‘RAG’ rating changes. Surrey is currently GREEN.
1st September We have reviewed the governments advice and there are no changes to visiting in our homes at this time.
1st August We have reviewed the governments advice and there are no changes to visiting in our homes at this time.
1st July We have reviewed the governments advice and there are no changes to visiting in our homes at this time.
23rd June Please note;
- Social distancing will remain at 2m when visiting our residents, for the foreseeable future.
- Although the government may change this guidance, the Society has decided to safeguard the safety of our residents, our policy will be to take the more cautious approach.
- Visiting will also remain by appointment only. Please Do Not turn up without an appointment as we would not like to cause embarrassment by turning you away
- When you have made an appointment please can you stick to this time as we are trying to ensure all families get a chance to visit.
As you are aware the Government has changed its lockdown rules. At this time it has not been changed for Care Homes.
We know how much our residents have missed seeing their families so we have arranged an area in the garden in each home where social distance visits can be made. This will be one visitor at a time and will be following the strict 2 metre distance rule.
Unfortunately we only have limited space in our homes where this can be carried out safely. Please phone the home where your relative lives and staff will be able to clarify their visiting rules as due to space each home has slightly different rules.
To ensure the safety of our residents we ask you DO NOT visit if you are feeling unwell at all. .
If you would like to visit your relative please phone the home to book in advance. We do not want to cause any embarrassment by turning you away at the door.
We thank you for your understanding
We would like to thank our amazing staff for keeping our residents safe and being an extended family when they haven’t been able to see their own. It is because of their dedication and hard work that our Sheltered Housing, Homecare service and Care and Nursing Homes are free from Covid 19
MESSAGE FROM YOUR CHAIRMAN AND TRUSTEES
We are all so proud of our staff for keeping the residents in all our homes safe and happy as possible. They are all coping with the situation well. There are no issues with food – or indeed sherry!
Obviously we are taking every possible precaution during the current emergency and following all the public health guidelines. We have some supplies of PPE but need more like so many hospitals and care homes around the country.
Currently we do not have any cases of covid-19, but of course a single case would change the situation dramatically. We have plans in place to deal with this and to prevent, as far as is humanly possible, any spread to other residents or staff. However it must be appreciated that in the final analysis this may not be possible.
We have some staff who are self-isolating but so far none actually have the illness.
As a board of trustees we are monitoring the situation closely in conjunction with our Chief Executive Officer and we will ensure that everyone is kept fully up-to-date.
F Paul Whitlock
ALL OF OUR HOMES ARE CURRENTLY CLOSED TO ALL VISITORS, as per the governments advice on how to deal with the Coronavirus
- There are designated external areas outside our care homes with a gazebo and seating available so you can see and speak with your relative the other side of the window. This is by appointment only to conform with the governments social distancing policy.
- Skype accounts have been set up for each home; if you would like to Skype your relative please phone us so we can arrange a chat for you.
MESSAGE FOR FAMILIES WITH A LOVED ONE IN THE CARE OF THE ABBEYFIELD WEY VALLEY SOCIETY
I and the trustees of the Society are very aware that our residents are all in the vulnerable category since they are all over 70 and a high proportion have underlying health conditions. You know that providing them with compassionate care as a member of our ‘family’ is our number one priority. Indeed it has been a guiding principle of the Abbeyfield movement from its inception. This will never change.
We are facing a challenging time for you, for them and our staff. Naturally while we are doing everything possible to try to prevent the coronavirus from gaining a foothold in any of our homes, that may not be possible. We have already put some measures in place but tighter control measures will then be called for and these will almost certainly be upsetting for all. I am sure you know that at the moment there is a national shortage of testing kits which means that any member of staff or their family who exhibit symptoms must self-isolate. We must expect to see staff shortages as the pandemic develops. I would ask all of you to observe any and all measures we may need to put in place.
This is not intended to alarm you but make you aware of how seriously we take the situation and assure you of our commitment to the health and wellbeing of our residents and staff.
Sally Tidy, our CEO, and her teams are working hard to keep everyone as safe as possible and implementing all government advice and the guidance we are getting from Abbeyfield nationally. They deserve our thanks for their dedication.
As I have said separately to our staff, this is a global challenge for our world which has hit us quickly and unexpectedly and everyone is feeling their way. Our Society is a microcosm of the nation and as a nation we have never failed to rise to the challenge, nor will we now.
I and my fellow trustees hope and pray that you stay well.
With all good wishes
F Paul Whitlock
- Ridgway Court is closed to ALL visitors at this time.
- Hatch Mill & Wey Valley House are asking that people avoid visiting to protect our residents and staff. However, if you do need to see your relative, we ask that you call ahead to make an appointment. We will only allow one visitor per resident and ask that these visits are kept to under half an hour.
- Skype accounts have been set up for each home; if you would like to skype your relative please phone us so we can arrange a chat for you.
- Tel no’s HM 01252 979103 RC 01252 715921 WVH 01252 712021
As you are aware the Society are trying to reduce the risk to our residents, as far as is practical, without causing distress and whilst following Public Health England and Government guidelines, with this in mind please find below our latest plan – Please note these actions may change rapidly, regular updates will be on our website www.abbeyfieldweyvalley.co.uk and posted on entrances.
- All visitors to homes are being informed not to enter building if they have travelled to risk area or if they have any symptoms.
- Door codes have been changed on all entry doors, staff will let people in and check hand sanitiser used. We are also offering a temperature check, with any who register above 37.5 on a tympanic thermometer being refused entry
- Visiting has not as yet been stopped, however visitors with small children are asked to reconsider bringing them into the homes
- If visiting please try to limit movement around the home, where possible staying in bedrooms throughout visit.
- All family meetings cancelled
- Volunteers have been asked not to attend at present, however have been asked to be on ‘Stand-by’ if the situation changes.
- All contact activities stopped (ball games etc)
- All non-essential hospital appointments cancelled, staff will take essential ones, where possible, to prevent them sitting around in hospital
- Cleaning hours have been extended to ensure surfaces can be wiped down regularly
- Food and cleaning stocks are all good, all deliveries are being made to porches
- Staff asked to identify any medical conditions which could put them at higher risk, so work streams can be adjusted if needed
- Staff with children asked to look at contingencies for child care if schools close
- Staff advised they may be consulted on annual leave being cancelled
- Residents given advice, meetings continue in sheltered houses with advice being given on what they do if they become unwell
- Nursing agencies being asked for their contingency plans, and asked to try to ensure staff are screened if necessary.
- Any agency staff are being temperature checked on entry to the homes
- External activities people have been cancelled, all outings cancelled
- RAG (red, amber, green) system being used to identify those residents at higher risk
- Charity Fund Day and our entry to Farnham Carnival cancelled
We know this is a worrying time for all, please abide by the sanctions we have put in place to reduce the risk to all within our homes.