We have had another change in PPE guidance this week which means that masks are to be worn when supporting people within a 2 metre distance particularly within a residential setting this is protect them due to their health or vulnerabilities. We are implementing this across all our residential services and continue to take advice from the Infection Control team for each service. This means masks will become more commonplace in the services, we will do everything we can to reassure the people we support who will find this a little scary.
This puts a further pressure on our supplies which is worrying for us. We currently are able to provide the PPE as recommended and we are working hard to find new supplies all of the time. The PPE situation changes daily and we can offer assurances that we are doing everything in our power to keep the flow of the PPE we need. Should our situation change we will notify the people who are impacted immediately
We still have Covid 19 outbreaks in Heathside and the Mews and we are working hard to keep people in those services as safe as possible. We now have a small number of suspected cases amongst the people we support at Ryfields Village although we cannot access testing for these people so we cannot be sure. However we have implemented infection control measures in line with an outbreak just in case. All our other services remain out-break free at this moment in time.
We are now able to support colleagues or their families who have symptoms of COVID-19 to have a COVID-19 test, for negative results this means they can return to work earlier than the 7-14 day isolation period and continue to provide support for the people in our services.
Currently additional testing has been offered to Nursing and Residential services, as a result some residents have been able to come out of isolation which has had positive effects on their wellbeing. Unfortunately, this offer does not extend to Ryfields village and some of our other smaller services but we hold hope the guidance on this changes and we are highlighting the importance of testing to the appropriate departments.
Central Office Support
We wanted to tell you about some of the work our central office have been doing to help us during this time.
We have senior manager from Central office who is focusing on PPE and maintaining other essential supplies throughout this crisis which has meant we have managed where other providers have struggled to maintain our supplies.
We have a senior manager and a number of the administrators focusing on recruitment ensuring that we are able to back fill positions for those who are in isolation and to maintain safe levels of staffing during this difficult time, whilst maintaining standards and safer recruitment practices. This has been very successful and not only have we got some temporary cover in our services we have recruited to nearly all of our vacancies.
We have a senior manager who reviews the enormous amount of guidance that is issued daily and ensures our policies and practices are responsive to this and reflect the guidelines. This person is also escalating any concerns to the right people who can influence for us. This person also keeps in contact with our regulators and commissioners to ensure we have the support and guidance we need when we need it.
We have senior manager responsible for maintaining quality and compliance across the organisation and offering support and guidance to our service managers.
Our board is actively involved with all key decisions and responses to Covid-19 and we have weekly meetings with the Chair and the Central Leadership team to help direct our response.
In addition we have a very committed and competent team of Service Managers on the ground in the service delivering ongoing direction and support.
Not forgetting our most important people our amazing team of support workers, cooks and housekeepers.