Relaxing of Covid rules for care homes met with caution in Shropshire

The relaxing of Covid restrictions for care homes has been met with caution by many across the region.

Debbie Price
Debbie Price

The Government has said that, from Monday, there will be no limit on the number of visitors allowed at care homes and self-isolation periods will be cut.

If there is a positive case of Covid-19 within a home, outbreak management rules will only have to be followed for 14 days, not 28.

Debbie Price, chief executive officer of Coverage Care Services, Shropshire’s largest not-for-profit independent care provider, said that although the Government had announced a relaxation of rules nationally in care homes from Monday, its homes would be continuing with many of the infection control measures they have in place.

She said: “We will still be asking people to book a visit when they wish to see a resident so that we can continue to manage and control visitor numbers in homes. We will also be asking visitors to continue to take lateral flow tests before admission to our homes.

“Our priority is to keep our residents and staff safe by minimising as many of the risks as we possibly can.

"Infection control measures will therefore remain in place across all our homes, including the wearing of PPE by visitors and if, at any point, we get an outbreak of Covid in a home, we will be restricting visitors to essential caregivers only.

“We have a duty of care to all those we look after and with the Omicron variant continuing to spread in our communities, we will continue to be vigilant at this stage.”

A spokesperson for Barchester, which has homes at The Mount and Coton Hill in Shrewsbury, Church Stretton, Ludlow and Much Wenlock, said: “We are delighted with the news that from Monday, in England, the visiting guidance from the Government will be changing.

"We are looking forward to welcoming more visitors and will be updating our visiting protocols as soon as the full guidance is released.

"It would seem that there are still safety precautions to take such as testing before coming in and wearing PPE but despite this, it looks to be a really positive step forward. In the meantime, our teams have meetings planned to quickly mobilise the practicalities of the guidance.”

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