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Government to lift care home visitor ban “within days”

Senior Man With Carer At Home

Care home residents are set to be allowed to see relatives and friends again within days, the government has revealed.

Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock told ITV News that “COVID-secure visiting” would resume shortly in England.

Hancock said: “In the next few days we will be setting out how COVID-secure visiting can happen in care homes, how we can have more visits of loved ones in a way that is very careful and in a way that keeps care homes safe.

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“There will be more details soon, but I think people are yearning to see their loved ones and the residents of care homes get so much from visitors. It’s been a very, very long period and that period when there hasn’t been any visiting allowed to care homes, that’s coming to an end very soon.

“I very much hope that in the next few days we will be able to make this change. We have been understandably very careful about it and we’ve got to get it right.”

As reported by AMP sister publication, Care Home Professional, non-essential care home visits have been banned in the UK since the beginning of lockdown in March.

The UK government has faced mounting pressure to ease restrictions with the Scottish government having issued its guidance last month.

Leading dementia charities Alzheimer’s Society and Dementia UK wrote to Mr Hancock this week warning of a “hidden catastrophe” taking place in care homes as a result of the visitor ban.

The charities said the ban had had particularly damaging consequences on the mental and physical health of those living with dementia, who make 70% of the care home population.

A DHSC spokesperson said: “Throughout this pandemic it has been our priority to protect care home staff and residents.

“We understand the challenge that limitations to visits has placed on staff, residents and their loved ones and that is why we will be setting out further details shortly on how we can carefully and safely allow visiting in care homes.”

Tags : CareCare HomeCoronavirus
Alex Douglas

The author Alex Douglas

4 Comments

  1. Really brilliant news Finally !
    Lessons learnt if there is a next time people outside the homes who provide support to residents should not be pulled away; same rules should apply if removing them has a harmful or detrimental impact . Not all families are visitors there is a huge difference. some family members aren’t actually visitors or get to enjoy a visit. They are Putting in support strategies; tweaking & complimenting the Care given so well in care homes. Disabilirty & Dementia etc needs the input from teams not just one group.. They work in partnership with the home..Residents & staff are missing this support as the task is so great with so many residents with individual & diverse needs. When all this is over there is alot of work to come for the staff the residents & the family support or key worker.
    Rehabilitation where its possible sadly Dementia residents will be lost only some will find way back to some normality additionally so many lost to illness; Covid; frailty;; despair; the ones who died alone away from there loved ones. Lesson must be learnt.

  2. Family should never be kept away…there should always be a a designated family member who can attend…my father is 99 years old and I haven’t been in his home for 15 weeks its an absolute disgrace. They say essential visiting only…?.let me tell you this when your parent is 99yrs old every visit is essential…

  3. They don’t know what damage this has done to people suffering from Alzheimer’s In care homes who can’t see their loved ones. Same for us, this has been unbearable, there’s tears every day, the thought of my darling dad wondering where we are is too painful to imagine. We are losing him more and more each day.

  4. I cannot believe we have still not had any notification for this. My son is not even in a clinically vulnerable category but has still not been allowed home or visits to the care home recommenced! Does anyone know what is happening??

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