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National Lockdown Update Message from Sharon Winfield, Avery Healthcare COO

As you may be aware, we are now in a national lockdown with further restrictions imposed on the Country, including visiting your loved ones in our care homes.  This causes all of us much anxiety, but I hope you understand that we must follow the rules in order to keep everyone safe.  The below details the latest lockdown measures relating to care home visits, which I urge you to read.  As ever, if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call the visitor helpline on 0800 470 2973.  Please note that this is a general enquiry line and not a line to make a booking for a visit.

National Lockdown – 5th January 2021

From this point, closed window visits and exceptional visits such as end of life will be permitted and should be discussed directly with the home.  If a home has a Garden Pod installed visits can take place in the Pods, however, if there is a positive case in the home I’m afraid the Garden Pod visits will cease until further notice.

The message from the Prime Minister is to ‘stay at home’, and it is very clear that the transmission rate of the current variant of the virus is extremely concerning.  Hospitals are struggling to cope, not only with admissions but also staff sickness.  We are certainly seeing increasing cases across our homes and kindly ask that you please try to be patient a little longer as we work through the vaccinations locally.

It is also important that you consider your own risk at this critical time and be assured that we are doing our very best to keep residents safe and well cared for.

Further information

Testing – as mentioned in my previous letter we have now significantly increased staff testing; please do be patient when contacting the home as the Management and their teams are busy supporting the residents and the testing regimes which has increased administration significantly.

Vaccines – the roll out of vaccines has commenced with the Prime Minister announcing that the primary focus is on care home residents to receive the vaccine by the middle of next month. This is positive news, and we are hopeful that by February, we will be in a better place to ease restrictions.

The Management and their teams continue to show amazing resilience on the frontline, and we are very proud of the way they and you, our families, have managed the pandemic to date.  We are all remaining focused on the priority to keep the residents and staff safe and commend all for such dedication, loyalty and hard work.