Covid-19 (Novel Coronavirus) Bulletinseven-steps-support-news ·
If you are a client, or the family/guardian of one, and exhibiting flu-like symptoms please get in touch with us immediately. We have arranged for a letter to be sent out to clients concerning the current corona virus situation.
There is currently a lot of national awareness and precautions for the novel coronavirus COVID-19; as such we are sending out this bulletin to outline some procedures and highlight current guidance.
We want clients and their families to rest assured that we will deal with this, and any future situations that arise, based only on the most up-to-date information provided by the government, health and social care authorities, and the national health service. We will always act in the best interest of our clients, our staff team, and our community.
“Like the common cold, coronavirus (COVID-19) infection usually occurs through close contact with a person with coronavirus via cough and sneezes or hand contact. A person can also be infected by touching contaminated surfaces if they do not wash their hands.” - NHS England
We will follow guidance from the Government, local council, public health bodies, and the Care Quality Commission in coordinating a response to Covid-19. Our standard health and safety, hygiene, hand washing, and dress policies will consistently underpin our response to Covid-19, which in most cases will be more than sufficient in mitigating risks. Our response will ultimately be pragmatic and flexible as the situation develops - and as advice from the above mentioned third parties changes.
We have consulted the following guidance and publications, the following resources will be useful in further reading keeping up-to-date with the latest information:
Public Health England
- Guidance for social or community care and residential settings on COVID-19
- COVID-19: interim guidance for primary care
- Public health matters blog
National Health Service
- Overview > Coronavirus (COVID-19)
- Emergency Preparedness, Resilience and Response > Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Care Quality Commission
Department of Health and Social Care
At this stage, our basic methodology of risk mitigation for Covid-19 follows our current health, safety, and hand-washing policies and NHS guidelines:
- Wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at-least 20 seconds,
- Always wash your hands when you get into home or into work,
- Use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available,
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not hands) when you cough or sneeze,
- Put used tissues in the bin straight away and wash your hands afterward
There are currently no plans or reasonable reason to expect any closures or cancellations of our premises and/or support. If this becomes the case we are prepared with a Business Continuity Plan and will continue to follow advice from the relevant public bodies and regulators.
If a staff member is returning from China or other affecting regions they should inform us and if symptomatic, call NHS 111 immediately. If we ascertain there is a risk to clients or other staff this may result in shift changes or cancellations.
“No restrictions or special control measures are required in these settings while a member of staff or resident is waiting for laboratory test results for COVID19. In particular, there is no need to close or send staff home at this point. As a precautionary measure, the NHS are currently testing a very large number of people who have travelled back from affected countries, the vast majority of whom test negative. Therefore, until the outcome of test results is known there is no action that needs to be taken.” - Public Health England
Our standard dress policy applies, including the use of safety equipment where appropriate. There is no current recommendation for the use of face-masks outside of a clinical setting. The most important measure is the use of a proper hand washing technique.
“During normal day-to-day activities facemasks do not provide protection from respiratory viruses, such as COVID-19 and do not need to be worn by staff in any of these settings. Facemasks are only recommended to be worn by infected individuals when advised by a healthcare worker, to reduce the risk of transmitting the infection to other people. It remains very unlikely that people receiving care in a care home or the community will become infected.” - Public Health England
Our business continuity policy states:
“In cases of epidemics through illness, we will ensure any advice given in advance by a public or government health body is strictly adhered too (such as workers accessing vaccinations). Workers already carry necessary resources to uphold hygiene and safety standards (such as sanitizer gel and disposable gloves). In the event of further required resources; they will be provided. We endeavour to do as much preventive work as possible – in order to prevent, to the best of our professional ability, the illnesses of people we support and workers. If a high number of our workforce becomes ill, we would look to access workers from a local provider we already work closely with.”
Update 11/03/2020 - W&P Training have posted some helpful guidance which we have and will continue to review along with the other sources above. Further information and useful answers are available from law firm Baker McKenzie.
Thank you and we wish you all the best at this time. Please feel free to get in touch with any concerns or information.
~ Seven Steps Support.