Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Northamptonshire
We are currently experiencing what is a significant and unprecedented public health situation with COVID-19. It is our duty as a homecare provides to update the community on what you can do to stay safe and vigilant. This is also an opportunity to share what One Stop Homecare are doing to help ourselves and those around us in Northamptonshire and surrounding areas.
At One Stop Homecare, our number one priority is the safety and well-being of our employees, clients, their families and the wider community. However, we do also understand that for some, regular assistance is necessary; which is why our companionship care service is still running with extra precautions in place. Our live-in care service is also running as usual and has been noted as the safest form of care, particularly with the high transmission rates within care homes.
We would like to take this opportunity to reassure you that we are doing all we can to keep our clients safe, and we are taking our responsibility in this difficult period very seriously with extreme precautions put in place.
Our COVID-19 Policy
At One Stop Homecare our policy is:
- Following the latest government guidance.
- Maintaining and regularly reviewing our business continuity and COVID-19 plan.
- Working together with the United Kingdom Homecare Association (UKHCA), local care associations and our local health and social care partners to ensure our processes remain as safe as possible.
- Being transparent and communicating regularly with our clients, employees, and wider stakeholders
Our Business Continuity & COVID-19 plans
Our business continuity plan includes details of the steps that are taken if our capacity to deliver care is reduced. We prioritise visits to ensure all critical care visits are covered first, using a tried and tested methodology that our staff have experience in following.
We recognise that Live-in Care services can significantly reduce the number of interactions between employees, members of the public and our clients. For this reason, we are working to increase our live-in care capacity in Northamptonshire to keep our staff and clients safe whilst providing the care that is desperately relied upon. Please contact your local care manager if you would like to discover more about this service.
Homecare– A safe option during COVID-19
During the current pandemic, it is vitally important that we continue to provide for those who rely on care in a strict, safe, and sensible manner. For those who are currently working as healthcare assistants, whether that be for a company, privately or for a friend/relative; recent weeks have forced a change in healthcare processes to reduce the risk of infection.
Currently, the safest form of care is home care, which dramatically reduces the risk of infection from person to person transmission. Our specially trained One Stop Homecare Carers can quarantine with the client inside of their home – away from large groups of people. When compared to the likes of a care home, with a high volume of people living, entering, and returning. This dramatically reduces the number of people that the client is exposed to – and for visiting care services, One Stop Homecare have minimised the number of carers required to provide for each client to ensure human to human contact is at its lowest possible level.
What are One Stop Homecare doing to protect clients during COVID-19?
In many circumstances, those who rely on care are the most vulnerable of the population. That is why One Stop Homecare has taken strict measures to ensure we are protecting our clients in these uncertain times. This article outlines how to provide safe care at home during COVID-19 using the current recommended guidelines from healthcare and virology professionals across the world.
Whilst we provide the care our clients desperately need; our One Stop Carers are using a range of PPE equipment to protect both themselves and their companions. The recommended PPE items to use whilst providing care are:
- Disposable plastic gloves
- Disposable plastic apron
- Fluid resistant surgical mask
- Eye Protection such as clear plastic goggles or a visor
Disposing of PPE
Where PPE has been worn during a visit to a household, the PPE should be doubled bagged and dated. Government guidance recommends it is then left in the household for a total of 27 hours before being placed into general waste. We have strictly adhered to this process to ensure that all PPE is disposed of safely.
Cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces
As the virus can remain on external surfaces, regularly cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces can help keep your home safe. That is why our care assistants have kept the households they tend to clean and infection-free during the current health crisis.
Minimising number of carers to clients
One Stop Homecare healthcare quickly responded to the developments of COVID-19 by minimising the number of care assistants that are necessary to provide for each client. This drastically decreases the number of care assistants that each client is exposed to, particularly for daily homecare services, massively reducing the potential of transmission.
Paying close attention to those we are caring for
We are closely monitoring those we are caring for to make sure that any potential symptoms are reported and acted upon. We can then take the necessary precautions to ensure any risks are diminished at source. The key symptoms to look out for are a high temperature and a new, continuous cough. You can find all the symptoms of Coronavirus here.
You can One Stop Homecare to provide the safest possible care during the current crisis. We have the safest processes and ways of operation, and recently received exceptional praises from our clients for our level of organisation amongst the One Stop Homecare team.
What you can do to stay safe during COVID-19
Here is a step by step list you can stick to in order to stay safe during the current health situation. All members of staff at One Stop Homecare have been practising the latest government guidance that is included within this list over the previous weeks.
Only leave the house for essentials
You should only leave the house for essential products to ensure your risk of infection is lowered. This means no unnecessary journeys or social contact whilst you are self-isolating at home.
Do NOT meet others, even friends or family members!
There have been many confirmed Coronavirus cases that have been symptomless, with many individuals completely unaware that they are carrying the virus. Additionally, it can take a few days for the virus to cause symptoms. Any of your friends/family could be completely unaware that they are carrying the virus and meeting them for any reason is a huge risk. Stay safe, stay home.
Always stay 2 metres away from other people
If you are to leave the house, social distancing practices such as staying two metres apart from one another can help reduce the transmission from one person to another. Many public places that are still open for business, such as supermarkets, have guidelines within the store to help you. If you have access to a surgical mask when leaving the house, use it.
Wash your hands regularly
Wash your hands regularly to ensure you are keeping them clean. This applies particularly when you are arriving home after leaving the house, after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. Do so for 20 seconds using soap or hand sanitizer the correct technique can be found here.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth
Another tip for safe care during COVID-19 is to avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth. This is to keep both you and those around you safe. If you have come into contact with the virus on your hands, touching yourself in these areas can higher the chance of becoming ill – highlighting the importance of our previous point, washing your hands!
Cover your mouth with a bent elbow, or tissue, when coughing or sneezing
The virus can be passed through air particles when you are to cough or sneeze, so if you do need to do it, aim for your bent elbow or some tissue paper – helping prevent the virus spread.
Stay informed – link
To ensure you are doing all you can to keep yourself and those around you safe, stay up to date with government guidance to find the latest updates and advice.