Here at Apple House care homes, we recognise and value the importance of safe visiting to our services.
COVID-19 continues to throw considerable challenges at all of us in our communities. At a time of uncertainty and change it is often our families we turn to for support and love to see us through difficult times. We at Apple House believe this connection to our loved ones is fundamental to emotional wellbeing. How then do we uphold a strong and positive visiting ethos at a time when social interaction and mixing of households potentially causes harm?
The Government stated, on 4th November, that ‘Care homes will be encouraged and supported to provide safe visiting opportunities as new national restrictions come into effect.’
Prior to this we had already begun to think creatively about how we could form safe spaces outside our buildings for the specific purpose of providing dedicated visitor spaces. With this in mind, we set out to commission the installation of small log cabins and summerhouses in our gardens. These are now nearing completion and mean that those invaluable connections with the people dearest to those whom we support can be maintained. Of course PPE continues to be used, social distancing respected but our visitor pods are non-clinical friendly spaces, at our homes but not IN our homes.
Creativity is key.
We continue to adapt and evaluate all that we do, with the people we support at the forefront of this at all times. Where we metaphorically hit a wall, we seek guidance from PHE and our very supportive local authorities, and together we find a way to overcome the hurdles thrown at social care by COVID-19. In so doing, we can try to create a new normal, one which doesn’t impact the most vulnerable in our communities and one which protects these invaluable family connections as much as possible.
— Jane Montrose