Brendoncare homes coronavirus update

We recently circulated this update to families of residents across all our 10 care homes. If you have any questions please feel able to contact our Central Office in Winchester on 01962 852133 or by emailing enquiries@brendoncare.org.uk.

Update from Brendoncare

I know that for many, not being able to visit your loved one is very difficult, and I offer my personal assurance that we are doing our very best to maintain the kindness, care and support that is at the heart of our homes. Our teams are working hard to keep in regular contact with you, and to respond to your questions promptly. I have been so pleased to see that video calls are being used more and more to keep in touch. They are warmly enjoyed, and I hope they are helping you too.

I know that like me you will be watching the news, and will have seen increasing conversation about care homes, and so it feels right to update you on the key issues affecting us.

1 – Our current status on coronavirus

Across our organisation, now and in the coming months, we know we will see confirmed and suspected cases of coronavirus.

Advice from Public Health England states that if we consider a resident to have symptoms of the virus we should treat it as a confirmed case.  If that becomes the case, relatives of those directly affected will be informed and I assure you that we are prepared to take every precaution to care for and protect individuals in that instance.

2 – Guidance from Public Health England

As coronavirus is a new virus, it is not surprising that we are receiving regularly updated guidance. Our Chief Operating Officer, Zoe McCallum, is analysing this information on a daily basis, and providing regular updates to ensure we are caring in the best possible way.

3 – Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

Access to PPE has been a key concern for many, and I am pleased to be able to reassure you that we have appropriate supplies available to us. Our Central Office in Winchester is being used as a central store, so that if any new needs arise our homes can be quickly restocked.

4 – Staffing

Our staff are well trained and are taking every suitable precaution, however we are all susceptible to coronavirus. Early on, we saw an increase in absences across Brendoncare but this has now steadied, and I am confident that we are able to continue to offer good care to all our residents. We have received an unprecedented number of applications from people wishing to join our team, included those with care and nursing experience who are no longer able to work for their normal employer. These new starters are receiving our usual high standards of induction.

5 – Testing for coronavirus

Up until now, testing in social care settings has been very limited, and not available to staff. We are now seeing an improvement here, and I hope this will continue. Information is being provided to care home staff locally as processes differ across the country.

6 – Visiting

We remain closed to all non-essential visitors and this policy is likely to remain in place for some time to come. The only exception to this rule will be for the next of kin or closest relative for those residents who are receiving care at the end of their life.

At this time more than ever, we are so grateful for the expressions of thanks and kindness that have been shown to the staff of our homes.

We very much look forward to seeing you again, and in the meantime, from our homes to yours, please stay safe and well.

Best wishes,

Zoe McCallum

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