From being one of the first care homes to offer residents and staff the Covid-19 vaccine to investing in technology to help with mental health needs, Gloucestershire-based Lilian Faithfull Care has been adapting quickly to the challenges of Coronavirus.
SoGlos reveals 11 of the ways Lilian Faithfull Care homes are keeping staff and residents as safe as can be during the pandemic.
Lilian Faithfull Care operates five care homes and two day care hubs across Gloucestershire, providing residents with exceptional levels of care – including specialist dementia care.
It has taken proactive steps at all stages of the Covid-19 pandemic to keep its residents and staff safe while protecting residents’ mental wellbeing. It is regularly reviewing the measures that are in place to ensure Lilian Faithfull Care homes remain a safe home for life for its residents.
For more information, visit lilianfaithfull.co.uk.
Lilian Faithfull Care is still able to welcome new residents into its homes, providing they have had a negative Covid-19 test.
Once they have moved in, they’ll be in ‘home isolation’ for two weeks and will receive another Covid test around day five plus another around day 10. If all tests are negative, they’ll be able to start joining in with activities in the home once the initial two weeks is up. For more information, check out Lilian Faithfull Care’s expert insight on moving into a care home during the pandemic.
Faithfull House in Cheltenham was one of the first six care homes in England to offer residents the Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine. Since then, residents in all five Lilian Faithfull Care homes have been offered or received the vaccination.
Staff from Lilian Faithfull Care were also some of the first to receive vaccinations from Gloucester Royal Hospital – with over half having already had their first dose.
With weekly testing for staff and routine tests every 28 days for residents, Lilian Faithfull Care aims to stay on top of any asymptomatic cases of Covid-19 to help prevent the spread of the virus. Staff are also trained to do their own lateral flow tests at home twice a week.
If any residents are feeling unwell, they are automatically tested on the same day. With residents and staff also having their temperature taken daily to build up a picture of each individual’s natural temperature range, making it easier to spot any variations.
Lilian Faithfull Care is operating a safe care bubble system in its homes, with residents living on the same floor forming a bubble. Staff working within these bubbles don’t move around the homes and, if agency staff are required, they’ll only be working for Lilian Faithfull Care and will take part in the weekly testing programme.
At the moment, there are also no visitors allowed into homes, with GP and care appointments taking place virtually wherever possible.
There is already a strict infection control policy in place at Lilian Faithfull Care, but it has also introduced a wide range of measures to strengthen existing cleaning routines.
These include installing contact-free, automatic hand sanitiser dispensers throughout homes and UV light machines in communal areas, as well as using anti-viral fogging machines within the home, cleaning entrances and key touch points every hour and deep cleaning the entire home every week.
Lilian Faithfull Care’s activity coordinators have been working hard to create a full activity schedule that’s both stimulating and safe for residents under the current government restrictions.
From relaxing activities like art, baking and flower arranging to active sessions including gentle exercise and indoor bowls, there’s plenty for residents to do safely in their bubbles. There are even virtual singalongs, board game evenings and cinema nights.
Thanks to its strong relationship with suppliers, Lilian Faithfull Care has had plentiful supplies of PPE throughout the pandemic – such as masks, visors, gloves and gowns.
All staff and visitors to homes must wear PPE, with staff being provided virtual training sessions on how to use PPE safely and effectively and visitors being talked through PPE procedures on arrival.
Although Lilian Faithfull Care homes aren’t able to welcome visitors during lockdown, there are special provisions that allow people receiving end of life care to have visitors. The manager at each individual home will be able to make these arrangements.
For anyone who is considering moving to a Lilian Faithfull Care home, it is offering live video tours and the opportunity to virtually meet staff, while prospective residents aren’t able to visit in person.
Isolation can be tough on people’s mental health, especially for care home residents who aren’t able to see their families. Lilian Faithfull Care has invested in more devices such as iPads to make sure residents can keep in touch with their loved ones virtually.
Lilian Faithfull Care is also investing in new technology – it’s currently trialling a new robot device called Genie which can help residents make video calls easily, as well as fundraising for interactive projectors with games and activities to keep residents engaged and having fun.
The postcards of kindness and Christmas cards of kindness initiatives from Lilian Faithfull Care encouraged schools and families to post messages to residents during previous lockdowns, to keep them connected to their community.
Sending cards, letters, drawings and gifts is a great way to let residents know their loved ones are thinking of them – with Lilian Faithfull Care quarantining all post and presents for 72 hours before giving them to staff or residents, to prevent cross-contamination and keep them safe.
If any staff member tests positive for Covid-19, they will leave the home immediately. They won’t be allowed to return to work until after the full self-isolation period has elapsed and they have had a negative Covid-19 test.
If any resident tests positive, they will self-isolate within their own room and receive care through barrier nursing, as well as various additional measures including extra PPE and locking down individual floors or bubbles. Families are also kept fully informed if the risk to residents has increased.
But families will be reassured to know that Lilian Faithfull Care homes have only experienced around a quarter of the number of infections compared to other care homes in the UK during the pandemic – and some homes haven’t had any infections at all.
For more information about Lilian Faithfull Care, visit lilianfaithfull.co.uk.
By Chloe Gorman
Tuesday 09 February 2021
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