Statement from Managing Director, Linda Wrout, regarding Thornbury Care Centre
We have created a WhatsApp group for families/next of kin to inform you of our Covid-19 updates and information as quickly and clearly as possible. The type of information that we will post is what you would openly read on our notice boards inside the home and will never contain any personal information of residents, families or staff.
PLEASE NOTE: If you choose not to receive this information by WhatsApp then please delete the contact.
As we move through the winter months, Coronavirus shows no signs of abating with most of the country under tier 3/4 restrictions and we must live with it as best we can, everyone’s life has dramatically changed. From the onset of the first wave we implemented a comprehensive contingency plan with our immediate priority of protecting our residents and staff as paramount while being sympathetic to the duty of care we also have for their families and loved ones. We have worked together as a team, often in very difficult situations but with great determination and strong leadership and had come through the second wave clear of Coronavirus until last week when one resident and one member of staff tested positive following our routine weekly testing programme.
What we did:
- All staff and residents prior to this week tested negative, we have tested everyone again and await the results.
- We sent the staff member home to isolate, and the resident – who was initially taken to hospital – is now recovering well in a Covid secure environment to complete the isolation period.
- We immediately decontaminated the area with fogging machines and have done this everyday since then.
- We took regular observations of residents who had been in proximity in the days that followed.
- We notified the Health Protection Agency.
With our immediate response times and the measures we had put in place, we are cautiously optimistic that we have stopped the Coronavirus before it spreads and no-one else either resident or staff currently display any symptoms. However, we have been informed by the Health Protection Agency that because there were two people who tested positive, we are now categorised as having an “Outbreak” and must remain in lock down with no inside visits for 28 days from 18/12/2020 until 15/01/2021, there is nothing we can do to change this decision.
We were so sorry to bring you this news when you were so looking forward to inside visits over the Christmas season, if there was anything I could do to change this I would do it. We had everything prepared for your inside visiting which included staff training on Lateral Flow tests, an online software system to manage the bookings, plenty of PPE and had coordinated extra staff to work over the Christmas period. As the Covid -19 pandemic continues, we are constantly having to adapt and make the best of each situation, while the Christmas season won’t be the same, we will do everything we can to ensure your relatives have an enjoyable time full of compassion and care. It will Christmastime for everyone, including our incredibly hard-working staff and we will celebrate the best way that we can.
Other things we are doing:
- We have built outside safe visiting pods across our homes which will allow families to visit our residents in comfort instead of families being outside, they have two separate doors to enter, a partitioned glass screen which means each side can talk to each other safely.
- We prevent cross contamination between our homes and those outside by transporting staff in our own minibus to reduce the risks of the use of public transport, staff change into clean uniform on arrival, we stopped the use of agency staff who would normally cross over 2 or 3 homes at a time, stopped all our own staff crossing over between homes, keeping them to one home or one building only, some staff working from home, carrying out meetings via Zoom.
- We also invested in Covipro fogging machines and air sanitisers, as well as conducting regimented infection control measures in all our homes, weeks even before the first lockdown.
- Staff are screened by temperature and symptom check before they start each shift and sent home to isolate immediately if there is any doubt over presenting symptoms with immediate effect and all staff are routinely tested every week and from today this has been increased to 3 times a week to ensure the most up to date picture of our homes Covid-19 status.
- We are currently working to ensure the vaccination programme is implemented across our homes in line with the Government roll out and will update you accordingly.
~At this point I would like to say “Thank You” to all our residents, their families and friends who have shown such patience, understanding and support during these difficult times~
Warmest wishes for faith, hope and peace this Christmas season🎄
Linda Ann Wrout