Coronavirus advice

As the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic continues, the safety of our residents and colleagues remains our number one priority. 

As experts in specialist care for those with complex needs, our service users fall into the higher risk category within the general population, and we are therefore taking every possible step to minimise the risk to them and our colleagues.

We’ve implemented a number of precautionary measures, some of which are shared below, and are closely monitoring the situation and following the Government’s guidelines and advice. 

Last updated: 28 September 2020

What are we doing? 

We’ve implemented a number of precautionary measures and are closely following the Government’s guidelines and advice. We understand that this is a worrying and unprecedented time and we will aim to keep you up-to-date and fully informed with all of our plans and procedures. 

Visits

We know how important seeing loved ones is to our residents, and we want to support this as best we can whilst maintaining a safe home for everyone. Our homes are working in line with national and local guidance to facilitate visits, where it’s safe and appropriate. If you’d like to enquire about a visit, please contact the Home Manager to find out more about the visiting arrangements in that home. Please note that visiting procedures may vary by area, depending on guidance from the local Director of Public Health England, which we must follow.

If it is felt that we cannot facilitate a safe visit at this time, we ask for your continued patience and support. We appreciate that this might be difficult for many of our residents and their family and friends, and we will continue to work with them to ensure that they can keep in regular contact. Wifi is available in all of our homes and we've purchased 60 iPads so that people can keep in touch via video calls. Our Home Managers and support teams will be in regular contact with family and friends directly, to provide updates about their loved ones. 

In line with Care Quality Commission guidelines, our homes will permit visits when someone's health has significantly deteriorated and they are now receiving end of life care, which may or may not relate to Coronavirus (COVID-19). These visits will follow strict protocols to reduce the risk of spreading the virus, and must be agreed in advance with the Home Manager. To protect those living in our homes, we can only facilitate one visit per person, each day, for 20 minutes. We will not allow entry to any family members that have Coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms or are self-isolating due to someone in their household having symptoms. We will endeavour to follow this guidance as much as possible, but have been made aware that, in some areas, local police have overruled these visits.

Keeping active and engaged

Our teams are working hard to encourage and support people to stay active and engaged. All of our homes have a dedicated Activities Team that is supporting people to maintain their interests and hobbies as much as possible, and take part in group and individual activities within the home. You can keep up-to-date with what our homes are doing on our website and social media - follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram.

Pre-entry screening 

We continue to implement strict signing in and out procedures across our homes. All essential colleagues who enter an Exemplar Health Care building must complete a screening questionnaire, have their temperature taken and wash and dry their hands before entry. We will not allow entry to anyone who is displaying the symptoms of the virus, has a temperature of above 37.8 or has recently travelled to a category one country. 

Infection control 

Our colleagues continue to receive up-to-date training about infection prevention and control, and specific training about Coronavirus (COVID-19). This includes an awareness of the necessary precautions to help prevent the spread of the infection, such as regular hand washing, the correct use of Personal Protective Equipment, and covering coughs or sneezes with a tissue. 

Our homes have also increased their daily cleaning schedules and we’re providing extra supplies of cleaning products and Personal Protective Equipment, to ensure that everyone living and working in our homes stays well. We're confident that we have adequate PPE for the coming months, and are continually sourcing new supplies. 

Staffing 

Since the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic started, we’ve recruited over 200 Support Workers, on both temporary and permanent contracts, to help us to cover any staff shortages due to sickness or isolation. We also have a large reliable team of bank and agency staff, as well as non-direct care and central team colleagues, who are in place to support our homes if needed.

We continue to advertise for a number of temporary and permanent roles across our 32 homes – check out our latest vacancies

Admissions

Exemplar Health Care is still taking referrals, where possible and appropriate, and we hope that this will help to ease the pressure on the NHS and wider health and social care system. 

For more information or to make an enquiry, please contact our Referrals Team on 01709 565777 or email referrals@exemplarhc.com

Questions or concerns? 

We understand that this is a worrying and unprecedented time and we will aim to keep you up-to-date and fully informed with all of our plans and procedures. 

If you have any questions or concerns about Coronavirus (COVID-19), please contact your Home Manager in the first instance, or email us at enquiries@exemplarhc.com (Monday to Friday 09.00-17.00).  

For the latest advice, please visit the Government website