Visiting our care homes
We are continuing to take all necessary precautions to prevent the spread of Covid-19 and protect our customers as much as possible.
Our updated guidance applies from 4th April 2022.
Our teams continue to work in line with government guidelines to manage the risk of Covid-19 transmission, and keep our customers as safe and well as possible.
To help ensure the safety of our customers and staff we remain focused on safe visiting practices, such as infection prevention control measures, carrying out risk assessments where applicable, testing arrangements, and the continued use of face masks and robust hand hygiene measures.
Contact with relatives and friends is fundamental to care home residents’ health and wellbeing and visiting will always be encouraged, there should not normally be any restrictions to visits in or out of care homes - including the number of visitors. Where a care home resident has confirmed Covid-19, every resident should still be enabled to continue to receive one visitor inside the care home
Care home residents will no longer be asked to isolate following high-risk visits out of the care home (including following emergency hospital stays) and will not be asked to take a test following a visit out.
Whilst GreenSquareAccord provides options for regular visiting, it may not always be possible for every home to offer all types of visits at all times - particularly in the event of an outbreak; outbreak restrictions will be in place for different lengths of time, depending on the characteristics of the home, the outbreak and the results of outbreak testing. In these instances, the home will contact designated family members to advise.
Key things to know about visiting in GreenSquareAccord residential care homes:
- Currently, when there are no restrictions due to outbreak or isolation at our care homes, there are no limits on the number of visitors.
- Most visitors to care homes will no longer need to test before entering but are asked to take necessary precautions to keep themselves and their loved ones safe, in line with general population guidance.
- Only visitors providing personal care should provide evidence of a negative lateral flow test before visiting (unless medically exempt). This may be an email or text from the NHS reporting the result or a date stamped photo of the test cartridge. If visitors are unable to produce a negative test, you may be asked to reschedule. The care home will not need to retain records of proof. Please note:
- Free lateral flow tests are available for these visitors during periods of high prevalence.
- You will be asked to wear appropriate PPE (provided by the care home).
- If you attend once or twice a week, you should test on the same day of your visit (testing can be completed at home or on site).
- If you visit more than twice a week, you should test a maximum of twice weekly, 3 to 4 days apart. Please contact the home’s manager for further clarification if required.
- Visitors should not enter the care home if they are feeling unwell, even if they have tested negative for Covid-19 and are fully vaccinated. Transmissible viruses such as flu, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and norovirus can be just as dangerous to care home residents as Covid-19. If visitors have any symptoms that suggest other transmissible viruses, such as cough, high temperature, diarrhoea or vomiting, they should avoid the care home until at least 5 days after they feel better.
- Visitors should continue to make arrangements with care homes in advance of the visit.
- Visitors should wear a face mask when visiting the care home.
- Visitors are asked to follow any guidance and procedures put in place by the home to ensure compliance with safe visiting practices, to include infection prevention control measures and use of PPE.
- Visits at the end of life will continue to be supported. Testing is not required in any circumstances for an end-of-life visit.
- GreenSquareAccord care homes now use a digital reception service to facilitate entry and exit of the home. If you have not yet visited the home since the introduction of this, please contact the home's manager who will be happy to guide you through this simple process.
- Visits may take place in a room most practical and comfortable for the resident (for example, residents with dementia may be able to take place in their own room with familiar belongings).
- Vaccination remains a primary protection measure against Covid-19, this is to ensure that safe care is provided to people who receive care and support. We encourage family members/visitors support to get a Covid-19 vaccine and a booster dose as and when you are eligible, as well a vaccine for seasonal influenza.
- In the event of an outbreak in a residential care home, outbreak restrictions will be in place for different lengths of time, depending on the characteristics of the home, the outbreak and the results of outbreak testing. Where this is happening, the home will contact designated family members to advise.
Thank you for your continued understanding and support. Our care teams appreciate how supportive customers, their families and friends are being as we try to ensure customers can see their family and friends safely.
For more information about visits to care homes please visit the GOV.UK website.